Unless you simply MUST have the W12.
Filling the gap between the 500-hp Flying Spur V8 and top-of-the-line W12, Bentley has just unveiled the Flying Spur V8 S. Underhood you'll find the same 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 that lives in the Continental GT V8 S, with 521 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque on tap. 0-62 mph comes in at 4.9 seconds, shaving three-tenths off the V8's sprint time, and top speed sits at 190 mph. The V8 S is visually differentiated via a black front grille with body-colored insert, a Beluga gloss rear diffuser, and the same 20-inch open-spoke alloys as its stablemate.
Optional dark-tint lights, black mirror covers, and Mulliner-spec 21-inch six-spoke rims are available to buyers who want a more aggressive look. Carbon-ceramics are also a must-have optional extra. The cabin comes clad in two-tone seats with contrasting roof center bow, piano-black wood veneer, a knurled gear lever and shift paddles, and three-spoke sports steering wheel. Wolfgang Dürheimer, chairman and chief executive of Bentley Motors, said: "The Flying Spur remains unrivalled in its ability to combine class-leading comfort with remarkable dynamic ability. It's the perfect choice for the customer who wants ultimate refinement as well as an exhilarating, spirited drive."
Variable displacement, enabling four of the eight cylinders to shut down when cruising, also helps to keep the V8 S relatively fuel efficient, returning 25.9 mpg on the combined cycle. As well as the power upgrades, throttle response and transmission calibrations have been sharpened, allowing for more low-rev power, while the all-wheel-drive system has a 40:60 rear-biased torque split. Engage 'S' mode and the throttle response sharpens even more, along with additional engine braking from the ZF eight-speed box that locks out the eighth gear.
The suspension has been upgraded to improve handling and body control, with Bentley recalibrating the CDC (continuous damping control) and retuning the stability control system accordingly. Look out for live pics of the Bentley Flying Spur V8 S from the Geneva Motor Show, where it will have its global debut next month.