Bentley EXP 12 Speed 6e debuts in Geneva
Even among a sea of remarkable cars at this year’s Geneva show, the Bentley EXP 12 Speed 6e was a stand-out. The EV concept previews the brand’s future design direction, including touches that will make their way to the next Continental GT.
The electric Bentley concept makes use of a short front overhang, long hood, and smoked-finished, low-mounted grille. Bentley also pushed the wheels forward and replaced the bulky side mirrors with thin cameras. Copper headlights identify the EXP 12 Speed 6e as a fully electric vehicle in the Bentley lineup. Meanwhile, the “6e” logo lights up inside the grille when the car is running.
The topless two-door builds on the good looks of the previous EXP 10 Speed 6 coupe. Along with previewing a future exterior design, Bentley also showed off what it may bring to future interiors. The copper details continue inside the cabin around the gear selector, door veneer panels, and the Bentley Dynamic Drive dial. A single piece of glass covers the entire center console, where there sits a high-definition OLED infotainment screen. On the steering wheel, cut-glass sections house a variety of controls, and there are two buttons, one for delivering performance on demand and another that limits speed. Passengers can play with their own control panel on the front fascia.
Bentley envisions offering long-distance range and rapid inductive charging for this EV. But when the feature is not available, the car can be connected to a main AC power supply through the auxiliary charging point, which is hidden behind the rear license plate.
While it’s unclear when Bentley will offer a full electric model, the automaker is easing its way into electrification with plug-in hybrids. The first model to receive such technology will be the Bentayga in 2018. Over the next few years, plug-in hybrids will be offered throughout the range.