Bentley shows SUV concept at Geneva
06/03/12 11:44 Filed in: News
It has been a fairly open secret that Bentley
has been looking at the SUV market as a possible extension to its range. Now, at the Geneva Motor Show, Bentley is testing the reaction of the public with the Bentley EXP9F concept.
The relative buoyancy of the SUV sector of the market has not escaped the notice of luxury car brands. There are rumours of Jaguar eyeing up the potential (notwithstanding its sister company Land Rover already providing a comprehensive SUV range). Lamborghini are said to be planning to re-enter the SUV market. And there are rumours of Maserati casting envious eyes at the potential.
Closer to home, Eterniti
are aiming to invent a new luxury SUV brand
which they claim to be the “world’s first Super_SUV” – just the market that EXP9F will be aiming at, if it reaches production.
As is often the case with concept cars, Bentley are going out of their way to underline that this is a concept and there are no definite plans for production. But it must be highly likely given the potential create a third model range alongside the Mulsanne and Continental. You can just imagine a Bentley SUV appealing to various world markets, such as the Middle East and Far East. Or, indeed, to those in the UK who just want the ultimate “Chelsea Tractor”.
The design brief for the Bentley EXP9F was to create a car that “feels equally at home at an opera gala performance, on the sand dunes and the overtaking lane of the autobahn”.
Its taller off-road stance certainly gives the EXP9F an imposing look that is unmistakably a Bentley. Power for the concept comes from a six-litre, turbocharged W12 engine and eight-speed transmission. But, Bentley say it could equally suit their new four--litre V8 or a hybrid powertrain.