• Jun 24, 2010
Touring Superleggera Flying Spur - click above for high-res image gallery

Those wacky Germans. They're always on the hunt for the next new niche and the second one of them discovers the next big thing in automotive packaging, the others dog pile on. The most obvious example is the Mercedes-Benz CLS – the so-called four-door coupe. Mercedes beat everyone to market with their swoopy, low-slung sedan. Then BMW did the CS Concept, Volkswagen launched the CC, Audi is readying the A7 and BMW will most likely put the four-door Gran Coupe Concept into production. Still not convinced? How about X3/Q5/GLK?

Now it looks as if Bentley is now looking to muscle in on Porsche's new niche, the five-door sport-luxury yacht, the Panamera. What's that you say, Bentley's British? Sure, in execution, but peel back the skin a bit and the Continental rides on a Volkswagen/Audi chassis – the Phaeton and last-gen A8 if you must know. Let's not forget that Bentley's president is named Franz-Josef Pfaegen and that he considers the Continental to be Bentley's, "911." That's 911 as in Porsche 911, not emergency/national tragedy. So yes, Bentley is as German as schweinebraten und hefeweizen.

In a conversation with the actually-British Autocar about the next generation Continental, a source within Bentley admitted that they're looking at adding a five-door Panamera-type hatchback to the super coupe, sedan and convertible line up. They feel there's growth potential in that particular body style. Bentley has been in rapid growth mode since Volkswagen rebooted the brand in 2003 by launching the Continental GT. Adding a five-door would only further expand the brand's appeal to the world's wealthier citizens.

Should Bentley build it? Why not? That said, it should also be building a three-door shooting brake version like Touring Superleggera's doing with the Flying Star. However, a five-door probably has a slightly larger audience. Additionally, if the new Bentley hatch is anywhere near as useful as the Porsche Panamera, owners will love the car. Besides, a Panamera-like Continental will be as close as we'll ever get to a twin-turbo W12, AWD Bentley station wagon. Bring it.



[Source: Autocar]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 27 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I say build it! That would be the coolest thing. Take a chance Bentley!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Bentley and Porsche are both part of VAG, so why would they be competing with each other??
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just what the world needs, a $90k station wagon.

      I saw Cadillac's $45k station wagon at the mall today.

      Good luck with that GM.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Farber - The world already has enough $90K station wagons, it's the market for $175K+ station wagons that Bentley is trying to break into.
        • 4 Years Ago
        A $90,000 Bently?

        LOL!!!!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        No doubt, more like $180k. If they sold them for $90k, they'd sell every one they could build. Bentley's for half off!!
      • 4 Years Ago
      An expensive hearse! No Thanks.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Here was me thinking it'd be nice if Bentley got back into its racing roots.

      I'd love to buy a sporty, lightweight coupe in the traditional Baby Blue Bentley.

      A manual gearbox would be nice too.

      A man can dream for useless things, can't he?
      • 4 Years Ago
      FYI

      The Audi A8 is not a related chassis, the Pheaton and Bentley are the same chassis. The A8 is on the D3 all aluminum chassis and the D1 is a standalone steel platform just for the Phaeton and Bentley Continental GT/Flying Spur. . .

      Come on guys this has been covered before...
      • 4 Years Ago
      the bentley flying spur speed is already fast enough for $220,000. its a 5600 pound car with 0-60 in 4.6, 600hp and 200mph top speed. the panamera turbo is faster 0-60, but it only weighs 4000 pounds. the bentley interior luxury and overall build quality is much better also.

      by making a "5 door" that competes with the panamera, bentley would just be taking the flying spur and making it uglier with an awkward sloping back and adding a little more power to an already beastly engine
      • 4 Years Ago
      Well, this thing sure makes the Panamera look pretty. Porsche buy these designers a nice dinner.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Isnt this 3 door? O.o
        • 4 Years Ago
        You're sorta correct. In typical AB fashion, they weren't very clear that the photo is of a concept TOTALLY UNRELATED TO THE HEADLINE.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Agreed with Boxer frantic.

      They SHOULD have had a 5 seater 4 door convertible by now,i really want to see which company will REALLY step out of the safe design box. Anyways, I bet your Mercedes will step it up AGAIN (just like they did with the CLS),and will make they 4 door 5 seater convertible (I think the had a concept 2 years ago,that everyone though WOULD be the Baby Maybach,that Maybach STILL needs). Maybe it will be Maybach.

      Aiming at the Panamere would be steping down,they need to step UP,NOT ,Step Down. Panamere my neighbor's fat smelly toe (rolling my eyes).
        • 4 Years Ago
        i thought Maybach was going out of business/Mercedes was going to stop making them?
      • 4 Years Ago
      i would love it, but only as a 3 door
      • 4 Years Ago
      "Report: Bentley considering five-door fastback to rival Porsche Panamera?"

      PLEASE DON'T!!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        I seen several Panamera's and they are hulking machines in person. Lines not as graceful as the Aston Martin Rapide. It looks like an extended 911.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ montoym

        Just last week I saw one on the read, looks way BETTER in PERSON.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I kind of thought the same thing until I saw a Panamera on the road not long ago. Man, those things are straight-up beautiful in person. Somehow looks strange in photos, but it just works in person. I saw it coming at me the other direction and that head-on view made it look otherworldly.

        Plus, aren't they one of Porsche's biggest sellers currently? Much better received than originally thought.
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