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STYLING | 8 out of 10
Car and Driver
makes the Benz look even more like a frumpy Solara
more distinctive than that of those other more imposing, less elegant carriages
The 2010 Bentley Continental line of coupes and convertibles continues to grow with limited editions. Already offered as a GT Speed and GTC Speed, the Continental range includes a new Supersports edition for 2010, with even more power and finery. In all, there are five Bentley Continental two-doors, each with a wide range of cosmetic and luxury touches available for personalization.
The two-door carries a base price, including gas-guzzler taxes and destination charges, of about $185,000, which zooms to more than $275,000 with the new Supersports edition. The competition? A scant handful of machines, including the Mercedes-Benz CL-Class coupe, the Ferrari California, and the Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe and Drophead Coupe.
Between the Continental GT coupes and GTC convertibles, there's a distinct choice offered to buyers. While both cars are spun from pieces common to the Bentley Continental Flying Spur sedan, their looks and driving appeal are more distinct than you might realize at first glance. The imposing elegance of the pillarless Conti GT coupe is more modern and appears smaller than its actual length and weight suggest. Edmunds implores you to "check out the quad circular headlamps, fastback profile and imposing 19-inch wheels-now that's attitude." Automotive calls the Conti lineup "more distinctive than that of those other more imposing, less elegant carriages that probe the limits of how large a car should be." The Continental GTC convertibles, with the roof arc sheared off, take on a more timeless, vintage look, with vivid creases on the body above the front and rear fenders giving it a thicker, more static appearance. It's more of a boulevardier, though it shares the coupe's circular headlamps, chromed matrix grille, and LED tail lamps. "Shearing the roof from the Conti coupe leaves a convertible that's less purely sexy than the hardtop," MotorAuthority opines, "but the GTC Speed has a laid-back, vintage appeal embellished by sharp pleats in its fenders." The look is similar in the front to the coupe-"The GTC looks much like the GT in front of the windshield," says Cars.com, "but the GTC's rear deck has a chrome strip around the passenger compartment"-though the convertible top stows away completely so that the convertible "maintains a sleek profile," Edmunds observes. Supersports editions stand out with their new front fascia and hood vents, along with a wider rear track that gives the special version "some nicely cut shoulders," Motor Trend notes. "Gloss-black 20-inch wheels fill the wells," Car and Driver adds, "and the rear spoiler features an extra lip contour for aero purposes." In an understatement, "the styling of the Supersports will never be described as subtle," they remark.
The cabin of all Continentals mixes traditional materials and shapes smartly. Bentley logos, chrome, and wood trim span the Continental GT's wide dual-binnacle dash, with a Breitling timepiece ticking away in the center of the dash, surrounded by walnut or knurled aluminum-or whatever custom trim the owner specifies. The cabin is "a standout, even in this rarefied segment," Edmunds says. "There's a charming old-world feel to the whole affair, highlighted by push-pull vent controls, a Breitling timepiece, and switches and levers constructed of real metal." Cars.com details Bentley's choice of "six natural, unbleached, laser-cut wood veneers" while MotorAuthority outlines the way in which "Bentley logos, chrome and wood trim span the dual-binnacle dash." Bentley takes the homage to its zenith with the Mulliner Driving Specification; it wears diamond-quilted leather seats, a knurled shift knob, and a three-spoke steering wheel, and on the Continental GT Speed and GTC Speed, the Mulliner package adds dark-finished metal trim, a rear spoiler, and wider exhaust pipes for a slightly menacing look. Car and Driver calls the Supersports' interior "splendid," rendered in special low-nap Alcantara and ultra-soft cowhides."
The 2010 Bentley Continental GT and GTC offer high rollers a distinct choice in how they roll.