Bentley Mulsanne to Reportedly Get 550HP Performance Version
Bentley appears to have a taste for performance models lately, with production vehicles looking set to benefit from its sporting heritage in addition to racing. Following the Continental GT3-R stripped-out model, the luxury car manufacturer plans a power upgrade and chassis tweaks for the top-of-the-range Mulsanne sedan as well.
Celebrating the GT3’s racing success, the Mulsanne super sedan could launch as early as the Paris Auto Show in October. “We will see Mulsanne developments at motor shows in 2014,” Bentley CEO Wolfgang Dürheimer told Auto Express.
A hotter version of the Mulsanne would further position Bentley as a sporting luxury brand, especially since the GT3-R got an excellent reception at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. According to company insiders, the GT3-R’s success has given Bentley confidence to develop more high performance models.
The performance version of the Mulsanne is expected to retain the 6.75-liter twin-turbocharged V8, with a power upgrade giving it around 550hp – up from 505 in the standard model. Consequently, 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) time should drop below 5 seconds, which would be pretty impressive for a large luxury sedan weighing significantly more than 2 tons (4,409 lbs).
Bentley is also expected to modify the chassis for a more dynamic feel and adopt some weight saving measures.
The Bentley Mulsanne lineup continues to grow as our spies have snapped the first photos of a long-wheelbase variant.
Caught testing in the distance, the Mulsanne LWB has a familiar design but adopts a thick B-pillar that is rumored to add approximately 200-250mm to the length of the car. The additional room will benefit rear seat passengers as the long-wheelbase variant is intended to be a chauffeur driven model.
Little else is known about the car but it will reportedly be offered exclusively in China. This strikes us as a bit strange considering both the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class and Rolls-Royce Phantom LWB are offered in a variety of markets.
Regardless, the Mulsanne LWB is expected to be powered by a 6.75-liter V8 engine that produces 505 bhp (377 kW / 512 PS) and 1020 Nm (752 lb-ft) of torque. It enables the standard Mulsanne to accelerate from 0-60mph in 5.1 seconds, so expect the long-wheelbase variant to be a few ticks slower.