Bentley has yet to offer an electrified model, but according to a report from Automotive News, it will add plug-in hybrid technology to its entire lineup in the next few years.
Some of the first vehicles to receive plug-in hybrid powertrain options will be the Bentayga and the all-new Continental GT. A plug-in Bentayga will arrive in 2018, while a plug-in Continental GT will make a showing after a new W-12-powered model debuts. The plug-in version will have a V-6 engine, but its power output should rise to V-8 levels, Bentley CEO Wolfgang Durheimer told AN.
The decision to offer a plug-in hybrid version of every model in its lineup signals that Bentley is serious about the technology. Bentley sees plug-in hybrids as an important part of a green future, not just a temporary solution until it’s ready to bring out fully electric vehicles.
“PHEV sometimes is mentioned as a transitional technology — it will be out of our way pretty soon,” Durheimer said at the 2017 Automotive News World Congress in Detroit. “From my point of view, plug-in hybrid technology provides the best of two worlds.”
According to Durheimer, one of the main draws is that plug-in hybrids can travel long distances more easily than pure electric vehicles. “I think the combustion engine will follow us for a long time,” he said.
Bentley’s plans have been brewing for at least a few years. In 2014, the automaker debuted a plug-in hybrid concept based on the Mulsanne at the Beijing auto show. At the time, it said 90 percent of its model lineup would be available as a plug-in hybrid by the end of the decade.