Beautiful city, beautiful women, and most importantly, beautiful cars! The reveal of the new 2017 Bentley Bentayga, held at Bentley Atlanta in Roswell, GA was an event to remember. Although it was a soggy night with many days of rain before and many more to come, people arrived in impressive numbers. Copious luxury vehicles rolled into the parking lot to get America’s first look at the all-new SUV built by the world-renowned Bentley Motors.
The Bentley Bentayga is a beautiful SUV with elegant styling, tons of technology, and more horsepower than any SUV currently on the market. The front end styling of the Bentayga is very similar to that of the Continental GT. The headlight/grille combination screams GT. The interior is sheer Bentley class:
- Hides among hides of supple leather in the interior
- Hand crafted wood and metal accents
- Gorgeous combinations with the diamond stitched leather seats.
The 8″ touchscreen navigation and 1,950-watt, 18-speaker audio system by Naim will get you to your destination in style. If need be, it will get you there fast! The 22 way adjustable seats hug your body for ultimate comfort as you rip mile after mile of open road powered by the 600 hp W12 twin turbo engine that produces 663 lb ft of torque that achieves 0-60 mph in 4 seconds flat and tops out at an astonishing 187 mph. Putting this power to the ground is an automatic 8-speed transmission coupled to an AWD trans axle. With the AWD system, this luxury SUV is capable of taking you off-road as well. The Bentayga features a four-mode adjustable air suspension, electronic active roll control, and electric power-assisted variable steering. Look out Land Rover! Bentley is on your heels!
If off-roading is not your thing, cruising the city streets is just fine. Keeping this beast firmly planted on the ground are 22″ polished 5 split spoke wheels wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero tires. There will be tons of interior color and wood options for the Bentayga as well as other 20″ and 22″ wheel options. When you go to buy yours, take your imagination and have fun.
I had the opportunity to chat with a few attendees and I received mixed reviews: Some loved it, others hated it. Then you have the few that are on the fence and simply don’t know how to feel about it. Those that instantly fell in love all had one thing in common; they loved the overall design of the Bentayga. The living room like seating, the elegance of the wood, and the design of the body lines.
Those that were opposed had reasons ranging from duplicated design (Continental GT) to “I was expecting more.” Those of us that were unsure… Well, we just enjoyed the event and looked for things to sway us in either direction.
One young lady I spoke with that fell in love with the Bentayga had this to say:
“Oh my gosh, I love it! It reminds me of myself; curvy and sexy! I would love to have one!”
The “power-hungry” customers were definitely pleased. Who wouldn’t be with 600 hp at your finger tips (literally, w/ paddle shifters)? I would be very pleased.
My next mission was to get the family perspective. I found a lovely couple that appeared to be talking about the pros and cons. Of course, I put myself in their conversation. This couple currently owns 2 Bentley’s and had this to say:
HUSBAND: “I do, indeed love the design of the Ben..Bentayga? Is that right? Bentayga! Yeah, anyway, its gorgeous. I love the lines and most of all; the power. I can show out when I’m around ‘certain people’ [air quotes] and relax when I’m with my baby [hugs his wife with one arm].”
WIFE: “I like it, but don’t love it. It looks kind of feminine. When I pick a car, or truck in this case, I want it to look mean. Aggressive. I want it to look like a man’s car so when people see me get out of it, they’re like, ‘is she really driving that?’ The headlights just don’t do it for me. That needs to stay on their cars. It may be the round shape of the body. Maybe the color? I don’t know but, It reminds me of our GT.”
That brings me to those that weren’t so impressed with the Bentayga. I heard similar comments from numerous people about the body styling; it looks like Continental GT. I was thinking the same from the beginning but didn’t find that to be a bad thing. The Continental GT is an amazing and absolutely beautiful machine. Porsche did it with the Cayenne and was a vast success. Many that own a GT at this event did not like the design simply because of the similarities of the front fascia. Some of the remarks I received were “It looks like a lifted GT. I could have done that to my own car” and “I think they should have used a different color to introduce us to it. That’s an old people color.”
The “on the fence” crew had similar comments regarding the color. Bentley should have chosen another color for the big reveal. “I don’t know, there’s just something missing. To be honest, I really think it’s the color. I need something to push me to say, ‘yes’ about this!” One gentleman stated. It seemed like everyone I spoke with that was unsure about the SUV were congruent about their distaste with the color. I too had pictured the Bentayga in a different color (black sapphire metallic or white w/a blue pearl and in a sport model).
The 2017 Bentley Bentayga, in all of its classy raw power, is now available for pre-order in the US. With its many luxurious options, powerful engine, off-road capabilities and sheer prestige, I don’t see why sales would not do anything but explode. After visualizing this in a color combination that suits me, I certainly would not mind adding one to my stable.
Photo: Hakim Wright