Used Bentley Continental GT (Mk2, 2010-2018) review
The long-established Bentley Continental GT has matured gracefully in cruising trim – or disgracefully in 700bhp Supersports guise!
When it was launched, the second-generation Bentley Continental GT was priced from £135,000, yet you can now secure one for less than £40,000.
That might be the same money as a new mid-range BMW 3 Series, but don’t go thinking you can run a Bentley for similar money, because the maintenance costs are very different. Tyres, brakes, insurance, tax and servicing add up quickly, so be realistic about whether or not you really can afford to run one of these magnificent beasts.
If you can, the Bentley is fabulous to drive, but this isn’t a scalpel-sharp sports car; it’s a fast grand-tourer that offers luxury and power in equal measure, even if those talents are ideally sampled only by two people, rather than four.
Which one should I buy?
- Best Bentley Continental GT for driving purity: Continental GT V8S
- Best Bentley Continental GT for equipment: Continental GT Speed
- Best Bentley Continental GT for blistering performance: Continental Supersports
The V8 engine is significantly more frugal than the W12, while offering all of the power and refinement you’re ever likely to need, but every Continental GT will cost plenty to run.
If you can, buy a V8 S. It’s sharper to drive than the regular V8 car thanks to tweaked steering and suspension. The GTC fetches a significant premium over the coupe, but you’ll get most of that back when you sell.
The Convertible offers fabulous refinement roof-up, and remains a superb cruiser with the top down. As standard, the Continental GT came with 20-inch alloy wheels, air suspension, bi-xenon headlights, leather, electrically adjustable heated front seats, a DAB radio, plus parking sensors front and rear.
What are the alternatives?
The Mercedes S-Class Coupe and Convertible are luxurious, fast, refined and high-tech, while the Aston Martin DB9, DB11 and Vanquish put more of an emphasis on performance than practicality – much like the Maserati GranTurismo and GranCabrio, which are superb (if flawed) grand tourers. The BMW M6 doesn’t have the Bentley’s interior class but it’s fast, practical and looks smart.
The Rolls-Royce Wraith is also luxurious, expensive and exclusive but, as with all of these rivals, the Wraith’s talents may overlap with the Continental GT’s – but ultimately the Bentley is in a class of its own.
Bentley Continental GT V8 vs Porsche Panamera
It was a tough job, but somebody had to test this pair of four-wheel drive, V8 performance cars. The then-new 500bhp Bentley Continental GT V8 faced the might of the 542bhp Porsche Panamera Turbo S, but there could be only one winner. We labelled the Porsche “a technological marvel”, but this wasn’t enough to prevent the Bentley from taking class honours. Read the full test here...
In this review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe long-established Bentley Continental GT has matured gracefully in cruising trim – or disgracefully in 700bhp Supersports guise!
- 2How much will it cost?Let's just say efficiency isn't too bad for a 2.3-tonne car with near 200mph performance
- 3How practical is it?A roomy cabin and decent boot space make the Continental a true Grand Tourer
- 4What’s it like to drive?Choose the silky smooth W12 or the rumbustious V8 – either way the Conti is devastatingly quick
- 5What should you look out for?First-rate build quality should inspire confidence, but budgeting for costly repairs and maintenance is essential
- 6What do owners think?The Bentley Continental GT may feel well built, but keep an eye on expensive potential faults