Bentley last November confirmed plans to launch its first electric vehicle in 2025 on the road to road to a full-electric lineup by 2030.
The first EV will be a sleek, aerodynamically shaped crossover blending elements of a sedan and SUV, with Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark previously describing it as being something like the Jaguar I-Pace but bigger and bolder.
Hallmark has since provided a few more details in an interview with CAR published on Monday. According to the Bentley boss, the first EV is linked with Audi's Artemis project which will also spawn a similar model for Porsche, perhaps as a replacement for the Panamera. Audi's model derived from the Artemis project is due in 2024 but will be previewed with a concept in 2021. There are rumors it might be badged an A9 E-Tron.
Volkswagen Group PPE modular EV platform
The basis for the trio of high-end EVs is expected to be a version of Volkswagen Group's PPE modular platform. The platform debuts soon in an electric Porsche Macan, and in its initial form will feature an 800-volt architecture. The high voltage, in combination with efficient cooling systems, means cars based on the platform will be able to charge at rates of up to 350 kilowatts, making 80% charges in about 20 minutes possible.
In his interview with CAR, Hallmark said the biggest issue is the added weight of batteries, though he also said rapid improvements in power density are being seen.
Solid-state batteries, which are much denser than current liquid-type batteries, are a potential solution, though Hallmark has previously said the technology won't likely be ready until closer to the end of the decade.