INTRODUCTION: Bentley Bentayga Aims For The Top

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Some would say “it’s about time” for Bentley to build an SUV. Now that it’s hitting the road next year, Bentley’s Bentayga is aiming to be the ultimate SUV.

Number one with a bullet: that’s how the Bentayga is rolling into the ultra-premium SUV segment in early 2016.


It’ll be the most expensive SUV, at $229,100.

Bentayga will be the most powerful SUV; its twin turbos and twelve cylinders belt out 600 horsepower.


Bentley calls it the most advanced 12-cylinder engine in the world; it features direct and indirect fuel injection, along with Variable Displacement cylinder deactivation, which takes it down to six cylinders under a light load. There’s also Start-Stop idle shutdown. Torque is a hefty 663 lb.-ft.

Bentley claims a 0-60 time of 4.0 seconds and a top speed of 187 mph, making it the fastest SUV.

All Bentaygas will have the W12 engine paired with an eight-speed automatic with a coasting feature. Let off the gas in fifth gear up to eighth, and the torque converter opens, dropping the engine to idle speed. Bentley cutely says this allows the Bentayga to “sail” until you re-apply the throttle.


The W12 will be the only engine on debut, but Bentley says that diesel and plug-in hybrid Bentaygas are coming later.

Underneath, there’s a air suspension with active roll control.

Styling is familiar Bentley, with a four-light front and crosshatched grillework.


Confidence and strength are transmitted with long curves and firmly defined contours.


Twenty-inch wheels are standard, with options of 21- and 22-inchers.


The massive Bentley haunches are as well-integrated as they can be on an SUV’s boxier form.


Tail light are Bentley with a capital B.


Lavish luxury awaits inside, with the word “bespoke” coming into rotation.


Many trim choices makes it possible to give the Bentayga interior a completely theme. There are fifteen hide options, 15 carpet options, seven veneer options, etc.


The driver’s environment is rich and fairly conventional.


Gauge fonts are blessedly refined…


…and there’s a standard windshield head-up display.


Rear-seat passengers have 18-way power seats (the fronts go 22 ways). Note the fixed rear wall that separates the cabin and trunk and renders cargo space un-expandable.


Each chair has its own flat-screen display…


…which doubles as a detachable tablet.


A novel option are these hampers, all of which can be pulled out and double as seats at your outdoor affair.


One of the hampers is a cooler…


…which will indeed fit your Dom Perignon.


Ultra-luxury SUV buyers appear to have already maxed out the Bentayga’s projected 3,500-unit first year of production with 4,000 pre-orders, according to Automotive News.


Their embrace of the Bentayga is appropriate, as many buyers in this top segment demand the best of everything. On many scores, the Bentayga appears to deliver exactly that.


Tell us in the comments: Do you think Bentley’s Bentayga is the ultimate SUV?