Bentley’s refreshed model portfolio is being crowned with a new ultimate version of the Continental GT Mulliner to sit at the pinnacle of the Continental family and two-door grand tourers. With enhancements to both its W12 engine and its advanced chassis shared with the GT Speed, the GT Mulliner W12 becomes the most powerful, fastest, most dynamic and most luxurious Continental GT yet created.
The new GT Mulliner W12 takes the best of all worlds to create the ultimate Continental GT combining the performance and dynamism of the Speed, the comfort of the recently-announced Azure and the magic touch and artistic flair of Mulliner handcraftsmanship. Its W12 TFSI engine, handcrafted at Bentley’s carbon neutral factory in Crewe, delivers 659 PS (650 bhp) resulting in a top speed of 208 mph (335 km/h) and 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds (0-100 km/h in 3.6 seconds). Electronic All-Wheel Steering enhances the dynamic nature of the Continental GT Mulliner W12 in each of the driving modes. The Mulliner-unique 22” wheel design features self-levelling badges which ensure the Bentley ‘B’ remains vertical at all times.
The cabin of the Continental GT Mulliner W12 is one defined by luxury, and showcases a level of choice and customisation that only Mulliner can provide. A unique colour split is exclusive to the car, with a new combination of primary and secondary hide joined by a third colour through a flowing design line. Eight different three-colour combinations are proposed by Mulliner, using Bentley’s palette of hides and threads to create striking yet elegant contrast throughout the cabin. A choice of 88 Piano wood veneers encourage further personalisation. “Diamond in Diamond” quilting to the seats, door trims and rear quarter panels is made up of almost 400,000 stitches with each diamond containing exactly 712 individual stitches. Naturally these are available in a spectrum of coloured threads, too.
To the outside, a suite of exclusive exterior design features separate the Continental GT Mulliner from the rest of the family. At the front, the new ‘Double Diamond’ matrix grille defines the new Mulliner signature style, complemented by matching front fender vents echoing the same silver and black design and with Mulliner branding. All of these features are available either with a bright chrome or with the more contemporary gloss black appeal of Mulliner Blackline Specification. Approaching and opening either door reveals the other Mulliner design features – mirror caps in either satin silver or black with Mulliner Welcome Lamps beneath, and illuminated outer door sills with Mulliner text.
The GT family now spans a range of models each with a different emphasis, to make customer choice easier. The Azure range is for those prioritising wellbeing and on-board comfort, while those customers wishing to concentrate on driving pleasure can specify the new V8-powered GT S. Going one step further, the W12-powered Speed is the pure drivers car, delivering exceptional dynamic performance and no expense to grand touring ability. Above all these sits the Mulliner.
The new GT Mulliner W12 will be on display at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed, where it will take to the hill along with three members of the new S range. Joining these modern road-going products on the hillclimb will be the first car in Bentley’s Blower Continuation Series, Blower Car Zero.
The Continental GT Mulliner W12 is equipped with an uprated version of Bentley’s renowned 6.0-litre W12 TSI engine, delivering 659 PS (650 bhp) – a 4 per cent increase of 24 PS over the standard W12 model – whilst maintaining an extraordinary 900 Nm (664 lb.ft) of torque.
With exceptional handling, this results in a top speed of 208 mph (335 km/h) and 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds (0-100 km/h in 3.6 seconds), a reduction of 0.1 seconds. A combination of four chassis technologies give the new Mulliner model a level of agility, performance and ride quality that has been stretched to new levels.
Bentley Dynamic Ride and three-chamber active air suspension with adaptive damping play a key role in the balance of the car and provide a formidable foundation to build upon. The optional and newly-developed Carbon Ceramic Brakes, Variable Electronic Stability Control, All Wheel Steering, and an Electronic Limited Slip Differential bolster the agility and performance even further.
Combining the new systems delivers Bentley’s philosophy that a vehicle should feel progressive and secure, yet still be dynamic. To achieve this philosophy in BENTLEY and COMFORT mode, overall grip is balanced between the front and rear wheels, while in SPORT this mode has been calibrated with a more rear-biased torque–split in all driving scenarios.
The Best of Both Worlds
Whether travelling across continents or over mountain passes, Bentley’s three-chamber active air suspension with adaptive damping, and Bentley Dynamic Ride provide control and comfort in abundance. The 48V active anti-roll control system was originally pioneered on the Bentayga and third-generation Continental GT and now tuned even further with the knowledge and learning since the systems introduction.
This innovative system features powerful electric motors within each anti-roll bar to resist body roll. In their firmest setting, the motors can deliver 1300 Nm in 0.3 seconds to counteract cornering forces and keep the body level.
The Electronic All-Wheel Steering enhances the dynamic nature of the Continental GT Mulliner W12 in each of the driving modes. This is even more apparent in SPORT mode, as the steering combines with Bentley Dynamic Ride and the electronic limited slip differential for a level of agility unlike any other Bentley road car, utilising up to 4° of steering lock on the rear wheels.
At low and medium speeds, the GT Mulliner’s rear wheels are steered in the opposite direction to the front wheels to aid a rapid change of direction, noticeably increasing the feeling of nimbleness. The steering feels sharper and with a quicker ratio, and a commensurate increase in steering feel provides even more driver confidence. At high speeds, the rear wheels steer in the same direction as the front, to improve stability.
The eLSD allows true active torque vectoring across the rear axle, which is then fine-tuned with torque-vectoring by brake systems. Together, these technologies improve turn-in and provide exception traction on corner exit – and, of course, allow the keen driver to induce slip angles and to balance the car on the throttle.
Unrivalled Luxury And Attention To Detail
The cabin of the Continental GT Mulliner is one defined by luxury, and showcases a level of choice and customisation that only Mulliner can provide. A unique colour split is exclusive to the car, with a new combination of primary and secondary hide joined by a third colour through a flowing design line.
Eight different three-colour combinations are proposed by Mulliner, using Bentley’s palette of hides and threads to create striking yet elegant contrast throughout the cabin. A customer can, of course, choose their own set of colours or specify the cabin colours and materials from the full suite of Bentley hide colours, veneers and stitching.
The Mulliner Driving Specification is fitted as standard, bringing the “Diamond in Diamond” quilting to the seats, doors trims and rear quarter panels, now with both contrast and accent stitching running through the diamonds design.
It takes almost 400,000 stitches to deliver this quilting across the cabin of the car, with each diamond containing exactly 712 individual stitches – each one precisely aligned to point to the centre of the diamond it creates. Developing the embroidery process to deliver this process alone took 18 months.
The seats themselves are finished with embroidered Mulliner logos. The floor mats are edged with micro-piping to match the rest of the colour theme of the interior and chrome Bentley ‘B’ retention caps are an example of the fine details that separate the Continental GT Mulliner.
The roof of the cabin is trimmed along its full length with indented hide, or smooth hide to match the seat backs if the fixed glass roof is selected.
The centre console is dressed in a unique diamond milled technical finish that uses precision machining to form a perfect pattern of facets, flanked either side by Grand Black walnut veneer with chrome overlays. A unique Breitling clock sits in the centre of the console, while the passenger side fascia is finished with a silhouette of the car’s exterior profile and the Mulliner logo. The veneer flows into the doors, where it is completed by a discreet Bentley ‘B’ motif.
For the driver, the brushed-metal finish of the Breitling clock is carried through from the physical world to the digital, with a unique design to the main gauges of the LED main instruments cluster where careful skeuomorphic design and the application of digital textures makes the virtual dials look like real metal.
The Continental GT Mulliner W12 truly is the ultimate combination of craftsmanship and performance. Available as both a coupe and a convertible, the car is the pinnacle definition of everything Bentley knows about making the best grand tourers in the world. For those wanting the luxury and comfort of a Mulliner model but with the character of a V8, the Continental GT Mulliner V8 remains available