Executives from Bentley Motors have suggested that the luxury automaker may combine its SUV and electrification strategies by developing a small electric-only sport utility vehicle that would slot below the Bentayga.
Speaking at a press event in Lisbon to mark the launch of the Continental Supersports, Bentley CEO Wolfgang Duerheimer said that the company anticipates strong market demand for a small Bentayga SUV. He cautioned however, that such a vehicle would need to be distinctly different from the Bentayga to avoid competition within the lineup.
For Rolf Frech, Bentley’s board member for engineering, a full-electric SUV would offer a compelling combination that would appeal to new customers.
A zero-emissions vehicle would also provide regulatory benefits as parent VW Group continues to deal with the aftermath of its diesel emissions crisis.
Should Bentley develop a electrid SUV, Frech indicated that it would arrive in 2020 at the earliest and would follow PHEV versions of the Bentayga SUV, Continental GT, the Mulsanne and Flying Spur. Those models will initially be equipped with a V-6 PHEV hybrid powertrain sourced from VW Group, followed by V-8 PHEV versions designed specifically with the U.S. market in mind.
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