But what model will be the first to go electric?
Hybrid vehicles started off as a means for economy cars to achieve excellent fuel economy but cars like the McLaren P1 and Porsche 918 proved that the technology could be brought to a higher performance level and price point. Bentley has already adopted hybrid technology in the Bentayga SUV and a hybrid Continental GT is also rumored to be in the works. Eventually, Bentley will electrify its entire lineup, which will likely include a fully electric vehicle. According to Automotive News Europe, Bentley's EV may arrive before 2025.
Even though an electric Bentley seems likely, it still hasn't been confirmed for production. If approved, the EV would likely be based on a platform called Premium Platform Electric (PPE), shared with Audi and Porsche. By sharing the platform with Audi, Porsche says it will have around 30% on developments costs. The cost would be amortized even more if the platform was shared with Bentley.
Bentley needs to lower its CO2 emissions, which currently sit as the highest in the VW Group due to the company's reliance on heavy vehicles with large engines. An EV would drastically lower Bentley's overall carbon footprint.
Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark says "When is the first full-electric Bentley? That is currently in the decision process, but our target is definitely before 2025." The biggest obstacle is deciding whether Bentley can use Porsche's platform because developing a new one would be too expensive. This year has already been challenging for Bentley as the company faced delays with the Continental GT due to complications adopting Porsche's dual-clutch transmission.
We still aren't sure which model will be the first in Bentley's lineup to go electric. Some rumors indicate it will be the next-generation Mulsanne, while other rumors point to the Continental GT getting an EV variant. No matter which model is, expect to see an all-electric Bentley in the near future.