's Great British Cars – Bentley Continental GT

Sun 15th Jul 2018

Great Britain, great cars. The UK motor industry is respected the world over, and though many of the vehicles are actually owned by foreign manufacturers, there can be no doubting of the fantastic heritage of the British motor.

To celebrate Britain’s famous history is launching a series looking back on some of the most famous vehicles the UK has ever seen.

Bentley Continental GT
When Rolls-Royce and Bentley split in 1998, there were few happy faces as it looked like years of a perfect partnership might be at an end. Bentley traditionalists however may have harboured a secret hope that the parting of way may herald a bright new future of independence for a brand, which for some, had had to live in the rather large shadow of the company behind the Ghost.

With the Volkswagen Group at the helm, they were determined to maintain Bentley’s place at the very highest echelon of luxury motors, and maybe to take it to greater heights.

The first crack at going it alone brought a stupendous piece of engineering and design, and one which may have had the Rolls-Royce team wondering what on earth had happened. The Bentley Continental GT after all had its origins in a concept car, the Java, which had been shown to the public way back in 1994.

The public finally got a glimpse of the Continental GT at the Geneva Motor Show and then soon after the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Though it had a high-end price tag, it still achieved an impressive 3200 deposits in its opening weeks and was put into production soon after at Bentley’s Crewe plant.

Though the Bentley Continental GT has many admirers, its marketing is aimed directly at those slight under the age of 50.

Years of manufacture: 2003-present 
Price when new: £110,000
Price now: £141,240
Engine: 5,998cc 12cyl petrol, 552bhp
Top speed: 198mph

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