Bentley planning sub-Bentayga SUV and new sports car

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Bentley will add a mid-sized SUV and a dedicated sports car to its global portfolio in the coming years as it continues to expand its line-up of ultra-luxury automobiles. Autocar reports the British brand’s second crossover model will slot beneath the recently unveiled full-size Bentayga (pictured above and below), and between Porsche’s Macan and Cayenne SUVs in terms of size, but will be priced well above both. Bentley’s mid-sized SUV will reportedly cost around £120,000 in the UK, which is about the same price as the flagship Cayenne Turbo S, which in Australia costs $284,300 plus on-road costs. The new SUV is set to borrow a high percentage of powertrain and chassis components from the Bentayga, helping to keep development costs and complexities low and to speed up its drive to showrooms. A concept version is tipped to debut in about two years’ time, about a year ahead of the production model’s launch. Bentley CEO Wolfgang Durheimer has admitted the smaller SUV hasn’t received final approval from Volkswagen Group executive yet, but is confident the success of Bentayga will make giving it the green light a no-brainer. Bentley has already revised its annual sales projections for Bentayga on the back of unexpectedly strong pre-orders, boosting predictions from 3600 to 5500 a year. Durheimer told Autocar it was “easy to imagine the Bentayga accounting for 50 per cent of all Bentley sales in a relatively short time”. Of the new SUV’s powertrains, the boss said the similarities with Bentayga would mean “it’ll be a matter of plug and play”. It’s expected that the Bentayga’s W12, V8, diesel and hybrid powertrains will also be on the table for its smaller sibling. Bentley’s mid-sized SUV will be followed a few years later by a new sports car inspired by the EXP 10 Speed 6 concept that debuted at March’s Geneva motor show. A natural rival for compatriot Aston Martin’s fleet of low-slung sports coupes, the new luxury performance model is rumoured to be offered with an Audi-sourced V8 as well as a Tesla-rivalling twin-motor, all-wheel-drive pure-electric drivetrain. Durheimer says Bentley now believes “battery technology [is] reaching a point where such vehicles are making sense”, and promised of a potential future Bentley EV: “the performance will be stunning”.