Bentley recognizes that even the one-percenters who buy its cars are interested in saving money at the gas pump. To that end, Bentley will use the 2014 Geneva auto show to introduce a new V-8-powered version of its Flying Spur luxury sedan.
The engine in question is the same twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 available in the Bentley Continental GT, in this case producing 500 hp and 488 lb-ft of torque. That's still enough to rocket the Flying Spur to 60 mph in 4.9 seconds and on to a top speed of 183 mph, but Bentley says the V-8 model will be significantly more fuel efficient, at 14/24 mpg (city/highway).
That may not sound like a planet-saving figure, but the Bentley Flying Spur is currently offered only with a twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 engine that is rated for 12/20 mpg. With the 616-hp twelve-cylinder engine, the Flying Spur can hit 60 mph in 4.3 seconds and tops 200 mph, but we doubt most customers will really notice that the V-8 car is significantly slower.
While the 2015 Bentley Flying Spur V-8 uses the same eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive system as its W-12 big brother, visually the two cars are very different. The new Flying Spur wears figure-eight style exhaust tips, red-accents Bentley Wings badges, black front grilles, 19-inch "Classic" wheels, and dark eucalyptus interior trim. Owners can also add the Mulliner Driving Specification, which bundles diamond quilting, "Jewel" oil and fuel caps, 20-inch wheels, alloy pedals, and the option of either Dark Stain Burr Walnut or Piano Black interior veneers.
The 2015 Bentley Flying Spur V-8 goes on sale this spring. Pricing hasn't been announced, but expect it to undercut the W-12-powered model's $205,825 starting price.