Bentley calls this video “The New Sound of Bentley,” a soundtrack it refers to as “stirring” and “thunderous.” We’re betting it’s the sound of the turbocharged V-8 variant of the Bentley Continental, set to make its appearance at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show.
The 4.0-liter V-8 will be shared with Audi, and will be used to supplement the 6.0-liter W-12 that Bentley uses throughout the Continental range. Both power and fuel economy of the force-fed V-8 remain to be seen, but you can expect enough horsepower to get a two-and-a-half ton Bentley airborne, coupled with a significant improvement to the W-12’s EPA fuel economy rating of 12 mpg city and 19 mpg highway.
The focus on fuel economy isn’t for customer benefit, since no one will shop for a Bentley Continental because of its EPA mileage numbers. Bentley, like other automakers, is having to embrace smaller, force induction engines to achieve upcoming EPA mileage standards.
Don’t be surprised if Bentley eventually borrows a page from Aston Martin’s playbook, too, and releases its own version of a city car. It doesn’t take too much imagination to picture an Audi A1 with a more prominent grille and a flying B badge.