3/5/2012 | 1 MINUTE READ

Bentley’s SUV Concept. . .

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. . .or “What Would Lord Peter Wimsey Drive?” “EXP 9 F had to represent the absolute pinnacle of the sport utility sector, setting a new benchmark for this type of vehicle.

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. . .or “What Would Lord Peter Wimsey Drive?”

“EXP 9 F had to represent the absolute pinnacle of the sport utility sector, setting a new benchmark for this type of vehicle. The style had to reflect Bentley’s sporting character despite its radically different package and purpose together with sculptured, flowing surfaces in keeping with the Bentley tradition.”

That’s Dirk van Braeckel, director of Design for Bentley, talking about the concept SUV the company is revealing at the Geneva Motor Show.

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Yes, there are the cues like the mesh grille, round lamps and power line along the body side. Those are 23-inch allow wheels with spokes that are mean to evoke the shape of turbine blades. The design language: “hewn from solid.” All of which probably underscores the need for the Bentley 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged, 600-hp W12 engine. Presumably this massive machine would need some power-turbine-type propulsion system, especially as there is a selectable “off-road” setting.  Don’t want to be stuck in the mush, what ho?

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Speaking of off-road: the silk-wool floor mats are reversible. Flip them over and there is saddle leather, more oriented toward the off-road experience. Of course, the interior of the car is one that cossets the driver in a British club-like environment.

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Last year, Bentley sold 7,003 vehicles across the globe. Which is rather significant when you consider the six-figure price tag and the fact that there are just two models (Mulsanne and Continental).

Still: Does the world really need another SUV? It may not. But Bertie Wooster might.


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