Turns out, in case you didn't know, the rich are just like regular people. They too are concerned about the environment, even when tooling around town in their super-luxurious Bentleys. So the automaker is weighing the idea of offering a diesel engine in its SUV offering, which could help satisfy customers' demands for more fuel-efficient engines.

Chairman and CEO Wolfgang Schreiber told Autoblog in a roundtable interview at the Geneva Auto Show that the automaker is researching whether or not a diesel engine makes sense for the brand. Bentley, owned by the Volkswagen Group, could in theory use a diesel engine from anywhere in the Volkswagen Group family. We at Autoblog have hopes they'll revive the V10 TDI used in the VW Touareg until 2010, but ever-stricter emissions laws would likely make that problematic.

But rich people aren't so much like us that they'll be worried about petty things like pricing. Schreiber admitted the diesel engine could be a $15,000 option, which he said customers would probably find "acceptable." Given that the cheapest Bentley today starts at $177,000, typical customers probably won't be diddling around worrying about an extra 15 grand.

Schreiber verified that the SUV, which was confirmed for production in January, will go on sale in 2017. The SUV, based on the EXP 9 F concept shown in Geneva in 2012, is being designed from the start to include a plug-in hybrid powertrain. Other Bentleys are expected to get the plug-in hybrid powertrain down the line, and the automaker is also considering another four-door sedan or a two-door coupe, but Schreiber said it's too early to talk about what those vehicles may be. The automaker won't follow Maserati's lead and make something radically cheaper, like the Ghibli. "If you go too far away from where we are today, there is too much chance you could disappoint the current customer," Schreiber said.


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  • 25 Comments
      sparrk
      • 9 Months Ago
      No self respecting Russian mobster would drive such an ugly thing. Same goes for your average rappers, Arabs or Kardashians.
      carboy55
      • 9 Months Ago
      That might be the worst styled vehicle I've seen in some time. Did the Chinese design it? O-M-G.
      19secondsslow
      • 9 Months Ago
      Please stop showing us pictures of this thing
      jonnybimmer
      • 9 Months Ago
      They should consider just dropping it all together, though let's be fair, you can't blame them for wanting to rake in the millions of easy profit they can get from Russia, China, Middle East and US.
      waetherman
      • 9 Months Ago
      It's not so much that the rich are concerned about the environment as it is that they don't want to be seen as douches. Rich yes, evil no. And riding around in something that gets 9mpg, no matter what the cost, is kinda douchey.
      Quest
      • 9 Months Ago
      Why do you (and others) keep showing that pic; it's not what it's going to look like. That was the concept of a few years back that was universally panned; Bentley stated the coming CUV would look nothing like the concept pictured - they took to heart the negative feedback.
      greg
      • 9 Months Ago
      Apparently Bentley still thinks people want this thing even though it is HIDEOUS
        William Flesher
        • 9 Months Ago
        @greg
        As Quest noted above, Bentley has stated time after time that the production version will look nothing like this prototype.
          sparrk
          • 9 Months Ago
          @William Flesher
          True, the production version will have the new "laser" headlights.
      Fabian Romero
      • 9 Months Ago
      They don't care about 15 grand but they're worried about fuel economy? They're never gonna get that money back no matter how efficient.
      sstowes
      • 9 Months Ago
      This should be a priority, if for no other reason that to help amortize the cost of the same engine in other less expensive vehicles under the VW umbrella. Obviously, they're not worried about pricing because of the target market; the U.S. (followed by Russia and China) is likely to be the largest region for sales of a Bentley SUV; but even in Europe, the take rate will likely be diesel anyway. Use that market to spread cost around.
      Mark Schaffer
      • 9 Months Ago
      If the "rich" were concerned about the reality of AGW they would be spending their money to eliminate their carbon footprints altogether. That some are is commendable. That many aren't shows that the "rich" are selfish, narrow minded, and rather stupid.
        kajohns1964
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Mark Schaffer
        Right on! Preach it Brother. Seen multimillionaire Al Gore's carbon footprint? It's humongous!
          CoolWaters
          • 9 Months Ago
          @kajohns1964
          Wrong again right wing nut. Al Gore's House is LEED Platinum.
          Mark Schaffer
          • 9 Months Ago
          @kajohns1964
          Yes. He not only does LEED but carbon offsets and invests in companies who are working on clean tech. You, on the other hand, are an anonymous right wing brain dead troll with no integrity or credibility. NEXT!
          EZEE2
          • 9 Months Ago
          @kajohns1964
          The house is still huge and gobbles electricity. The actual reduction in energy use is not that great: Al Gore, who was criticized for high electric bills at his Tennessee mansion, has completed a host of improvements to make the home more energy efficient, and a building-industry group has praised the house as one of the nation's most environmentally friendly. The former vice president has installed solar panels, a rainwater-collection system and geothermal heating. He also replaced all incandescent lights with compact fluorescent or light-emitting diode bulbs. "Short of tearing it down and staring anew, I don't know how it could have been rated any higher," said Kim Shinn of the U.S. Green Building Council, which gave the house its second-highest rating for sustainable design. Gore's improvements cut the home's summer electrical consumption by 11 percent compared with a year ago, according to utility records reviewed by The Associated Press. Most Nashville homes used 20 percent to 30 percent more electricity during the same period because of a record heat wave. That was his own statement, 11%. Whoop de do. And that is the house. Again, that is his own statement, and not Fox News. He also flies around the planet on private jets, and sold his tv network to a Qatar based company - this is the nation that makes its money from....from.....oil. He also bought a second ocean front home in Santa Barbara, on 1.5 acres of land, with swimming pools, fountains, etc. all the while children are starving in the USA and abroad, he jets around on private jets telling people to live more austere lives, while railing against austerity. His carbon offsets he buys, he buys from a company he owns. What an inconvenient truth... The older jet he likes to fly on emits about 45,000 pounds of carbon when flying across country. Good stuff.
      Vonzales
      • 9 Months Ago
      I think it's gorgeous. I couldn't own one but I'd rent it just to ride down city center at least once :) It's a museum on wheels
      ground
      • 9 Months Ago
      the v12 tdi from the audi q7 would be a better powerplant than the old v10
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