Full 2007 Bentley Continental GTC Review
What's New for 2007
The 2007 Bentley Continental GTC is an all-new four-seat luxury convertible based on the Continental GT coupe. Bentley's twin-turbo W12 engine is standard, as is all-wheel drive.
In recent years, Bentley has become quite adroit at sizing up the wealthy consumers who shop at the top end of the automotive market. Although pedigree and prestige still count for plenty, today's buyers expect real substance behind the exquisitely detailed badging. Accordingly, Bentley's newer entries offer the kind of unbridled, infinitely customizable luxury the traditional British marque has always been known for, while drawing upon the modern-day technology and engineering expertise of Bentley's German benefactor and parent company, Volkswagen AG. The brand's latest offering is the 2007 Bentley Continental GTC, a four-seater that affords buyers the opportunity to savor Bentley opulence with the top down.
Getting that top down is a remarkably simple affair. Press a button and the top vanishes in less than 25 seconds, and it will function at speeds of up to 20 mph. You won't find a "hump" behind the cabin either, as is traditionally the case with convertibles. Bentley has relocated the car's rear suspension to make room for the storage of the Continental GTC's top, resulting in a sleeker profile than you'll find in most drop tops. The look is accentuated by the strip of polished stainless steel that encircles the cabin and runs along the windshield.
This theme of platinum-plated, we've-thought-of-everything efficiency is repeated all throughout the 2007 Bentley Continental GTC. The car weighs 5,500 pounds, but with a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 engine underhood, it's capable of cracking the 5-second threshold in the 0-60-mph test. In addition, the Continental GTC handles itself with a nimbleness that belies its size. Four suspension settings are available, allowing drivers to customize their ride to one that's as plush or firm as they see fit. Speaking of customization, Bentley owners may choose among 17 interior color options and four types of wood trim to create a swank cabin that's uniquely theirs.
The Continental GTC is a touring convertible. Though it offers a more dynamic drive than Bentley's other drop top, the Azure, its heavy curb weight prevents it from being as sporting as its rivals, the Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG convertible and the Aston Martin DB9 Volante. But neither of these cars can touch the Continental GTC when it comes to sheer, all-out luxury. Unbridled sumptuousness is what Bentley buyers expect, and in this respect, the 2007 Continental GTC is in a class all its own.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
A four-seat ultraluxury convertible, the 2007 Bentley Continental GTC comes in one feature-laden trim level. Standard amenities include 19-inch wheels, adjustable suspension damping with four settings, a power convertible roof, bi-HID headlights with high-pressure washers, premium leather upholstery, dual-zone climate control, 14-way power and heated front seats, a 12-speaker sound system with a six-disc CD changer (mounted in the glovebox), a navigation system and Bluetooth. A wealth of customization options is available, allowing buyers to pick from out-of-range exterior paint colors and special interior trim materials and color schemes. Also available are goodies like 20-inch wheels, a heated steering wheel and lambswool rugs.
Powertrains and Performance
The Continental GTC gets its juice from a 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 good for 552 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. The W12 is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, which delivers power to all four wheels through a standard all-wheel-drive system. Bentley says the Continental GTC will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds, and is capable of a maximum speed of 195 mph.
Standard safety features on the Bentley Continental GTC include stability control, traction control, antilock disc brakes, side airbags and a tire-pressure monitoring system.
Interior Design and Special Features
Not surprisingly, the Continental GTC offers a cabin that's rich in luxury. Fine wood and premium leather are everywhere, and Bentley's hand craftsmanship is in evidence in details like the Breitling clock and metal bull's-eye air vents. With the top lowered, the Continental's cabin remains placid at speeds of up to 50 mph with the windows down. Raise the windows, and things are quiet enough to facilitate conversation at speeds of up 80 mph. If greater speeds are required, a chrome-and-aluminum windblocker can be erected across the rear seats to settle air currents. Without the blocker, there's room for two passengers in back. Luggage capacity is 8.3 cubic feet – less than that of the Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG, but more than that of the Aston Martin DB9 Volante.
The Continental GTC handles with a confidence that allows it to feel buttoned-down during even the boldest of driving maneuvers. By choosing the stiffest of the car's four suspension settings, body roll can be all but eliminated, even around tortuous turns. Despite the car's 5,500 curb weight, acceleration is never less than bracing, though the Continental GTC's heft does prevent it from offering the outright sporting feel of a DB9 Volante. Instead, the 2007 Bentley Continental GTC woos drivers with the kind of serene, well-planted ride Bentley buyers expect.