Bentley eyes all-electric GT future
published : 11 Jul 2019 at 16:05
writer: Richard Leu
EXP 100 GT concept celebrates brand’s centenary and previews a potential flagship BEV coupe.
Ah, Bentley design taken to its extremes…
Bentley turns 100 years old in 2019, so it’s time for something special from the brand’s team of designers and engineers.
Seen here in official pictures is the EXP 100 GT concept car embodying a substantially evolved design language inside and out.
The front grille, head lights, tail lamps and body silhouette have all been pushed to their extremes. Note how the use of copper tones help give the EXP 100 GT a classy feel in the typical Bentley fashion.
Likewise, the cabin is equipped with futuristic-looking seats for four, materials made from things organic and minimalist fascia. All occupants get the so-called Personal Assistant, an AI feature for them to talk to.
Can the steering retract away?
Bentley says the EXP 100 GT can drive by itself bestowing it the Level 5 driving autonomy degree. In fact, several other manufacturers have already showcased this tech in recent concept cars, particularly Audi.
The more crucial news would be the drivetrain. All four wheels are powered by an electric motor bringing the combined torque output to 1,500Nm. Standstill to 100kph requires a mere 2.5sec and top speed is rated at 300kph.
Despite being a large coupe measuring 5.8m in length and 2.4m in width, the EXP 100 GT is claimed to weigh 1,900kg. That’s quite light by standards of today’s super coupes.
Bentley hasn’t mentioned what kind of batteries are used in the EXP 100 GT. But it’s most likely to be advanced solid-state ones rather than today’s widely used lithium-ion type. This additionally explaining the 700km driving range and the ability to recharge the batteries to 80% in 15min.
Looks like a nice formula for an all-electric Azure replacement…
With the EXP 100 GT, Bentley is visualising how a grand tourer could look like in the future. As well, the British luxury brand is aspiring an all-electric car thanks to be linked with Porsche and Audi, two other nameplates having BEV know-how.
And yes, an all-electric flagship GT should nicely form as an indirect replacement for the Azure, last made 10 years ago (the subsequent Mulsanne-based Grand Convertible was made in very small numbers).
Not only would a potential car give Bentley a similarly priced rival for the Rolls-Royce Wraith but also with true GT distinction from racy BEVs like the Pininfarina Battista and the imminent Lotus Evija.