Bentley's First Electric Car Will Be Sickeningly Fast - And Shockingly Expensive

Bentley's first all-electric will begin production in 2025, do 0 to 60 mph in just 1.5 seconds, and cost $250,000, CEO Adrian Hallmark has revealed. Speaking to Automotive News Europe, the CEO added that the "brutal acceleration" of the first electric Bentley is not its main selling point.

The shift to electric for the U.K. quality and luxury car brand will lean heavily on the Volkswagen Group and Audi technology. Bentley was purchased by VW Group in the late '90s. Audi — part of the VW Group as well — developed the PPE, short for premium performance electric platform. Bentley will use the PPE for its first EV. It "gives us the battery technology itself, the drive units, the autonomous capability, the connected car capability, the body systems and some innovations in those," Hallmark told Automotive News Europe.

In November 2020, Bentley revealed its electric roadmap and plans to go fully electric by 2030. Bentley's electric future is set on a transition plan. Through the company's Beyond 100 strategy, the brand has already presented the Flying Spur Hybrid and the Bentayga Hybrid. Bentley is also investing to make EVs even greener by recycling rare-earth elements and magnets and building integrated structures. In 2019, Bentley revealed the EV concept EXP 100 GT, a grand touring vision with strong futuristic design lines. However, Hallmark revealed that the first EV Bentley will produce will not be the EXP 100 GT.

Body, speed, engine, price, and luxury

Bentley's CEO stressed that the brand will not build an electric vehicle that follows any of the current EV trends. "What we will not do is try and make them look like electric cars," Hallmark said. He did not reveal what the exterior and body of the EV will be like but hinted at its shape as being "incremental to the current Bentley range of Continental GT coupe and convertible, Flying Spur sedan and Bentayga SUV." Hallmark added that these models will eventually also switch to fully electric power.

When talking about price, Hallmark said the new EV would be in the range of the Mulsanne despite not being a limousine. Bentley discontinued the Mulsanne in 2020, with prices for models of that year listing as high as $348,000, per Car and Driver. Automotive News Europe reported that one of the versions of Bentley's EV will cost about $260,000.

The engine will have 1400 horsepower, break 0 to 97 kilometers per hour in 1.5 seconds, and its main attribute will be "effortless overtaking performance from a huge amount of torque-on-demand," Hallmark said. "If we are 650 hp now with GT Speed, we will be double that with the BEV," Hallmark explained. The electric Bentley will go into production at the new "Bentley Dream Factory" in Crewe. The plant is part of a $3.4 billion investment for Bentley's electric future.