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LateNightCable

LateNight and PolarFox's Bentley GT Analisys

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LateNightCable
Erster Beitrag:
Letzter Beitrag:

I'm starting a new series where I critique the design of a featured car every week. ( or whenever I feel like it :wink: ) As an accomplished artist with a strong eye for asthetics, I feel I am pretty qualified to judge the refinement of various designs.

I will tell you the things I like about each car, and point out the the things I see as flaws if any, also I will talk about how the design could be improved upon.

So, to kick it off, I will start with the contraversial Bentley Continental GT.

-- LateNightCable

c442017a.jpg

Here in this front quarter view, we see just how bulbous the GT is. I do not find this to be a very well refined design, it looks like they were shooting for sleekness and internal volume at the same time, with the final design comeing off as neither sleek, or all that voluminous. The front matrix grill, which is a major Bentley hallmark is very small and swept - not good for a Bentley, It should be much larger, and more upright, exuding a commanding presence. The ovoid headlamps follow this " submissive " theme in their windswept stance. The only saving grace of the front, is the wide open lower fascia, which lends a lower and wider effect to the car. Overall, the front could use a more lean, hard edged look, with much better use of the trademark large Bentley grill. It almost looks as if there could be more room in the engine bay than in the passenger compartment - weird.

1365-4.jpg

In this side view we see that the bonnet is still very short looking. The front overhangs are not too bad, but it would be nicer if the space behind the front wheels was more extended, making the bonnet longer. The front should stand out somewhat from the rest of the car, drawing attention to the power beneith. This design as it is does not do that. In this case " integration " is not so good. The deep creases along the side add a much needed slimming effect, as does the pronounced " squared off " rear fender. The roofline looks good for the most part, but disolves into the rear deck which seems cut off. Achieveing not so much a fastback look but an " eggbutt " appearance. The rear could stand to be lightend, and sharpened up. As it is, it gives the impression that the suspension could bottom out very easely, not the impression you want out of a high speed GT.

1365-6.jpg

I am really surprised at how lacking in destinctive charictor this back end is. So much more could have been done to destinguish it from anything else, but its' as if the designers had no better ideas, because it's certainly not inspired. It would have " lifted " the back visually to place the license plate on the boot lid rather than the bumper, but thats minor. The flat, plain expanse out back just stares at you though. The taillamps in particular are very bland, they could be spiced up with a contrasting color such as a clear or amber lens. The tailpipes are okay, if you're into oval, although they are a little small. Looking at them you would never know they connect to such massive power - some would like that " sleeper " look, others may not. I personally think they should be more prominant. The grey diffuser looking thing beneith the bumper is meant to slim the rear, but the bumper should really be physically smaller. The rear haunches jutting out from the rest of the car, along with the creased lip on the boot lid combine to add a dose of athletisism.

In closing, I think the designers had a problem getting VW off of their minds while designing this car. It reflects the VW way, but not the Bentley way. I don't think it's nessesary for a Bentley to look so round and windswept. It should be upright, more square, dignified, and proud to be Bentley. This car has some details that work, but they are simply in place to make it look less fat. Sitting still, this car looks like it needs a gym workout bad.

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thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

To Piggyback off of LateNight's styling analysis, I will follow each of his up with a review and analisys of each part of the cars fundamental engineering. I may be an opinionated person, but I will subdue that for these bits and will present an unbiased engineering summary.

First off: Powerplant.

<img src=http://autozine.kyul.net/0_Inspiration/53/eb218_eng.jpg>

The engine is a 6.0L W12 formation consisting of two 15 degree V6 banks, which are themselves banked 90 degrees against each other on a common crankshaft. This unique engine layout offers a supremely compact engine. As a result, the front of the bentley need not be excessively long to accomdate the engine. Furthermore, this short engines allows for a near full front midship mounting, which yileds impressive weight distrobution.

While the 6.0L W12 was sourced from parrent company volkswagen, it is uniquely tuned for bentley and is produced in england. The modifications come to the variable valve timing system as well as the twin turbochargers and fuel and ignition timing, all of which have been altered from the standard volkswagen faire to produce an excessively authoratative 1,600rpm torque plateau, yet the engine's versatility allows for a fairly lofty power peak at 6,100 rpms.

Peak power is set to come in at an impressive 550hp. This is produced by a DOHC layout of heads, sporting four valves per cylender, electronically controlled variable valve timing, as well as dual intercooled INCON turbochargers, each boosting it's own respective pair of banks (the W engine has 4 banks!). The fundamental layout of these four valves heads can trace it's roots to the european spec. VR6 engine, which has been succesfully produced for years.

The only drawback of this W configuration is that, while it is very smooth in practice, it does not offer the inherent balance of a V12. It's doubtful you would notice a difference unless you drove the GT back to back with a V12 car.

The driveline:

<img src=http://www.canadiantracker.com/members/images/nacs2-TH.jpg>

The Bentley's formidable W12 power is directed through a ZF 6HP32 automatic transmission, the only available choice for this car. This transmission, the first available six speed automatic, debuted in the BMW E65 7 Series, and has since taken residence in a number of volkswagen and jaguar products. The ZF 6spd is a known slick shifter, clicking off very quick and buttery smooth shifts which approach undetectable. It's unusually low stall torque convertor has the capacity to take advantage of the unique low end torque properties of the twin turbo W12, surely offering a great off the line snap. The only fault in this transmission is that the gearing is more than a bit tallish, which can be a good thing, keeping your luxury bentley quiet and calm in demeanor when being driven in a sophisticated manor, but does hinder when one is driving for excileration.

The power is put to the wheels from there by an all wheel drive system with a viscious planetary geared central differential. It is the same Torsen permanent all wheel drive system utilized in audi's "quattro" system. This allows for a permanent gearing without the loss of ability to retransfer torque as neccesary. This system has been proven reliable on hundreds of thousands of cars. While not the most modern, the Torsen T-1 System is very good. It allows for great amounts of power to be seemlessly put down in a variety of adverse conditions, making this one of the most versatile bentley's made.

Chasis:

<img src=http://www.baileycar.com/bentley-gt.jpg>

The chasis which the Continental GT rides on was directly sourced from the upcoming Volkswagen Phaeton full size luxury sedan. With the full size sedan chasis comes a full size sedan weight, tipping the scales at a curb weight of 5,060lbs, it is every bit as heavy as a bentley should be. The front suspension from this is a relatively sophisticated system using a dual control arm layout, in which the A-Arms are layed out in the double wishbone setup, but are never physically convergent, forming a "virtual king pin", which removes any possibility of torque steer. The rear suspension is a trapezoidal multi-link layout, a design championed by Audi, which has made it's way into some of VW newer products, such as Phaeton, upon which GT is based. All around, variable air springs are used to suspend the vehicle, allowing for variable dampening pressure and ride height.

Zero to sixty times are rated by the factory to be 4.7 secconds, and 4.8 secconds in the 0-100kph. Top speed is said to be 190mph, fuel economy has yet to be released, but expectations are that it will be every bit as extravegant as the car.

Conclusion:

This will be a world class tourer, and a phenomenal car, it won't be a phenomenal bentley, and even though it is a bargain for a bentley, you can get everything it has in a CL600 for about 2/3 the price. The engineering is both tried and true as well as modern, cutting edge, and performance is impressive. What the laws of physics take away, some should be redeamed by technology. Overall, I give it a B.on engineering.

Pros:

Very powerful

New level of dealer support

All componentry is top notch

VW Parts bin brings new levels of reliability

AWD brings all weather capability

Impossibly versatile engine

Front suspension is cuttng edge

6spd Auto is the best available

W engine does wonders for weight distrobution

Cons:

VW Parts bin washes any unique engineering character away

grossly overweight

No Manual Transmission offered

W, while very smooth, does not offer silken V12 demeanor

PersianJ
Geschrieben

How does a CL 65 compare to this car?

Are they too different to be compared you think?

And do you think that maybe the next-generation CL for '06 will be much improved over the current CL?

So far from what I've read the CL 65 is supposed to be far quicker than the Bentley and has a lot more luxury/gadgets inside ....but some say the Bentley has more character .... interesting .....

The next-gen CL is supposed to be a big leap forward in every department compared to even the current CL, that will be interesting to see also .... :)

LateNightCable
Geschrieben

I don't think the GT and CL65 are too different to be compared, both being pretty large sport/luxury coupes occupying the same price bracket.

But regardless of a performance advantage or disadvantage, I think that the GT will win favor with a lot of buyers simply because it's a " Bentley ". Even Mercedes-Benz can't trump that pinache. The Bentley will definitely have more character and " hand-crafted " appeal. A high-tech image and lots of gadgets will sell the Benz.

zwadia
Geschrieben

I just think BMW has done a much better job than VW of maintaining the heritage of these marques (RR and Bentley). The continental GT is too far a departure for my taste. Even if you heralded back to Bentley's Le Mans past - you would find a totally distinct look to their racers. VW's Le Mans campaign for Bentley was some sort of a sick joke.... using the winning Audi Platform to kick it off.

LateNightCable
Geschrieben
VW's Le Mans campaign for Bentley was some sort of a sick joke.... using the winning Audi Platform to kick it off.

This is true. When I first heard that VW was planning for Bentley to return to LeMans, I new exactly what the motive was. It wasn't for development purposes, but for promotional reasons. VW wants to turn Bentley into a " mass producer ", leave it to VW to have their heart in the wrong place.

mv
Geschrieben

The one and only think i can't stand about this car is its weight...It hampers its fabulous engine...That's why a power hike is being prepared :lol:

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

it's a whale of a car, it was a mistake to put it on the phaeton platform, a platform already plagued with weight issues. Also, the engine in the GT sits mostly in front of the front wheels, so understeer is constant, and the W platfrom makes the center of gravity higher than it should be (especially since the engine sits higher in AWD cars anyhow)

LateNightCable
Geschrieben

Yeah, I've seen reviews of this car since, and it's not portrayed as a very sporting car at all. It's powerful, but doesn't feel incredibly so, the engine ( basically two VR6s' ) has no soul, and the car is not built to handle. They pumped this car up in the press like it was going to be an athletic five-star road rocket, but it turns out to be a barge. Somehow, none of this surprises me. The interior style is about the only thing I like about it.

I would take an old Continental T in a minute. Technically " obsolete ", but then sometimes perfection isn't perfect.

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

perfect is by definition timeless.

obsolete comes and goes.

15 years ago, rear wheel drive was considdered by many to be obsolete.

continental T is set to be replaced by a VW worked continental like the GT. That's really too bad, because the continental T is a fantastic car with a ton of sport, style, and elegance, and the GT is shamu. The nice cost saving, platform sharing measure of using the phaeton platform was a mistake (platfrom sharing and cost cutting are features that don't belong in a bentley). Having them use a little A8 suspension and aluminum space frame technology could have made an incredible car, but we can see where VW's priorities are. A huge turbo engine can't fix all problems, they have to learn that.

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