Flash Drive: 2008 Bentley Continental GTC
This 2008 review is representative of model years 2007 to 2011.
By Staff of MSN Autos
Finished in St. James Red with Beluga Black interior and contrasting red stitching, the Bentley Continental GTC is ultra-luxury in the grand touring style — but with a sporty attitude. This 2-door convertible is a big, heavy car, but the massive power from the twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 instantly makes it feel smaller. Step on the throttle and it delivers instant thrust, and will push the car to triple-digit speeds in just a few seconds. Equipped with the Mulliner Driving Specification (an $8,900 sport package), the Continental GTC feels remarkably nimble and quick. If you prefer a little anonymity in your life, the Continental GTC is the wrong car for you. – Mike Meredith
The style and visual panache of the older Continental R — sold as recently as 2002 — has been lost to make room for the enormous new W12 engine. The engine is tall, so although the Continental is no bigger than a Toyota Camry, it feels enormous. In terms of power, the 6.0-liter engine is a mountain. It’s smooth, and nearly 500 lb-ft of torque can accelerate this massive vehicle seemingly without effort. The revs build quietly and slowly but the speed just pours on. Though swift, the interior is what this car is all about. Although the dashboard is high (again, because of that engine), the materials are gorgeous and the style is fantastic. With an interior this beautiful, it’s no surprise that the Continental GTC looks best with the top down so everyone can see it. It might even be worth all $193,900. – Paul Hagger
If you’re willing to spend $200K on a new car, chances are you want people to notice — top up or down, the GTC doesn’t disappoint. The interior is stunning, with polished walnut and plush leather seats featuring red stitching and a flying red “B” embossed on the seatbacks. Double-pane windows and a fully lined top keep the interior whisper quiet even at highway speeds, but with the top down you get to hear the wonderful exhaust note generated by the 552-horsepower W12 engine. With full-time all-wheel drive, the GTC can take full advantage of that power. Plant your right foot and the 5,500-lb machine leaps off the line with a roar. Steering is precise and handling is good — this Bentley truly is a joy to drive. That is, as long as you ignore the trip computer. My heavy right foot resulted in an average of 9 mpg. – Perry Stern