Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore – Bentley Singapore has just introduced a new V8 powertrain option for the Flying Spur luxury sedan, or “luxury four-door grand tourer” in Bentley-speak. The new 4.0-litre engine gives buyers a slightly more economical and slightly more affordable option than the pre-existing 6.0-litre W12 models.
Granted, this is not the first time Bentley has fitted a V8 to its Continental and Flying Spur models. But as of now, this new variant of the Flying Spur is the only V8 sedan in Bentley’s range since the departure of the glorious 6.75-litre L-series V8 in the Mulsanne.
There are a couple of benefits of having a downsized engine in a Bentley. The V8 model is 100 kilograms lighter than the W12, making it more agile and manoeuvrable than the heavier car. It is more fuel efficient, sipping petrol at a modest 12.7 litres per 100km (as opposed to 14.8 litres per 100km in the thumping great 6.0-litre), and it produces less carbon dioxide, 270g/km versus 337g/km.
Of course, the V8 is less powerful, producing just 550 horsepower and 770Nm of torque. Though we doubt buyers of the V8 will be griping too much about the 85hp power drop from the W12. As expected, performance figures aren’t as impressive. Acceleration from 0-100km/h is rated at 4.1 seconds and it goes all the way up to a top speed of 318km/h. The W12 does the century sprint in 3.8 seconds and gets up to 333km/h.
But in a four-door Bentley, these figures are rather inconsequential. Especially when you factor in the opulence of the car itself. You’d be hard-pressed to wish it had better performance. The twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 is already mighty impressive, sending all 770Nm of torque to all four wheels at just under 2000rpm.
BENTLEY FLYING SPUR V8
Engine 3996 cc, twin-turbocharged V8 TSI
Transmission 8spd automatic
Top Speed 318km/h
Fuel Consumption 12.7l/100km (combined)