New Bentley Bentayga PHEV arrives at GenevaMarch 5, 2018
Bentley has added a plug-in hybrid powertrain option for the Bentayga SUV, making it the brand’s first electrified vehicle. The firm says it is its “first step towards full electrification”, and it lines up alongside W12, V8 and V8 diesel versions of the Bentayga.
Under the skin of the Bentayga Hybrid is a new turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine, mated to an electric motor and generator. Bentley has yet to release any power or performance figures for the new model, but claims CO2 emissions of 75g/km, while an official range of 31 miles on electric power only is claimed, as measured under New European Driving Cycle tests. Recharging the battery pack will take 7.5 hours from a household three-pin plug, and a 2.5-hour charge time is quoted for those with a proper connector.
While the Bentayga Hybrid retains the same Sport, Bentley, Comfort and Custom driving modes, the stop-start switch in the cabin has been replaced by a control for three new hybrid only features – EV Drive, Hybrid Mode and Hold Mode. Each of these modes alters how reliant the car is on the battery and electric motor for propulsion, with EV Drive switching the car onto electric power only, and Hold Mode for holding charge and relying more on the V6 engine.
The infotainment system and instrumentation has been changed too, to reflect the car’s hybrid power source. For instance, the rev counter has been altered with a new segment dedicated to how much electric power is being used, while a battery status dial replaces the coolant temperature gauge. A live energy flow diagram is now available on the infotainment screen and the TFT display in the middle of the instrument panel.
The satellite navigation setup works with the hybrid system too, calculating the best balance of electric motor and engine usage for every journey in a bid to be as efficient as possible. For instance, it can store electrical energy in reserve if the navigation sees city driving ahead. Bentley says it can ration electrical energy so efficiently, that on-board charge reduces to zero on arrival.
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