Bentley is working on its first ever electric vehicle, which is expected to debut in 2025 as the brand’s new flagship. It will have all the usual Bentley traits of luxury, exclusivity, performance and style, but the EV will have one important unique trait: its battery will grant it unmatched range, according to the automaker.
We currently don’t know what body style it will adapt, whether it will be a crossover or a sedan, but it may actually end up being something in between (either a tall sedan or a raised fastback design, if not a full SUV). According to this new report published by Autocar, work on the vehicle’s design is almost complete.
The source quotes Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark, who confirmed that work on the interior was 95 percent done, while the exterior design was 80-85 percent ready. He also made it clear that the manufacturer will take full advantage of not having a big ICE lump under the hood, so the vehicle might feature a departure from Bentley’s traditional design proportions - it may have more greenhouse than before.
Gallery: 2022 Bentley Flying Spur Hybrid
Mercedes has also adopted this approach, and while the EQS is unquestionably excellent to travel aboard of, opinions about its aesthetic qualities are mixed. Bentley will probably not give up on the long hood and sweeping design that it is known for, although it may give up on it slightly for improved practicality and space.
The vehicle will look quite different to the rest of the Bentley range, Hallmark confirmed; he said
It's an incremental product, so it will exist alongside our current cars. We're trying to shape a segment and game-changer, not just an electric version of what we already have. It will be more progressive than some of our current designs. Not radical, but with hints that signal we're entering a new era with this vehicle.
Let’s be clear: the design will look like a Bentley, feel like a Bentley and go like a Bentley. But yes, the overall aero efficiency will be a step change from our current cars. It will be among the very best for efficiency, no question. It has to be, because there are inherent weight and therefore efficiency issues with battery packs that we will overcome.
After this first EV, Bentley will launch four more by 2024 and while Jaguar has announced that it is going upmarket with its future (electric) offerings, it seems Bentley is not excluding launching a cheaper vehicle too. Hallmark said
Today all of our products are in a very tight price band. So I can say that we would like to either go up or down in order to exploit the brand further in terms of its potential.
And aside from the aforementioned big battery, it looks like electric Bentleys will come with some kind of hands-free charging. Hallmark didn’t know whether this meant inductive charging or a robotic arm that plugs in for you, but he said they were looking at implementing a solution like this.