The lifespan of Bentley's powerful W12 engine is less than a year. As reported earlier, the iconic W12 will be discontinued in April 2024, by which time the British luxury company will have produced more than 100,000 units, and Volkswagen's most upscale brand will switch entirely to electric drive by 2030. According to the manufacturer, this makes the W12 the most popular 12-cylinder engine ever built. However, Bentley is giving the W12 a special edition homage prior to its final breaths. The commemorative trim is known as the Speed Edition 12, and it is offered on all four of the company's main product lines, including the Bentayga SUV, the Flying Spur sedan, the Continental GT coupe, and the GTC convertible. It is limited to 120 units for each body style and features distinctive styling elements, badges, and a numbered plaque.
Bentley Speed Edition 12: Powertrain Details
The brand-new special editions are based on the Speed variant of the corresponding Bentley, so they all have the same 6.0-litre W12, twin-turbo engine that churns out the same 650bhp of maximum power and 900Nm of peak torque, with the latter developed from 1,500 to 5,000rpm.
Bentley Speed Edition 12: Exterior, Interior, and Colour Options
The cars come with silver brake callipers, a feature not found on other models, and are available in a variety of colours, including the Opalite Grey-Green. The Flying Spur sedan and Bentayga SUV both have 'Edition 12' badges on their rear quarters in addition to the existing speed nameplates, while the two-door Conti twins receive 'Speed Edition 12' badges on their front fenders. Along with the distinctive Mulliner Silver-piped seats and the '12' machined into the organ stop air vents, other features include the Blackline exterior brightwork, 22-inch black wheels with self-leveling badges, and blackline exterior brightwork.
With the W12 firing order printed on the dashboard, custom upholstery, and "Edition 12" embroidery on the seats, the interior changes in each car are more noticeable. Besides this, each car's engine is assigned a unique number (1-120), and owners receive a scale model of their car's engine that is made of the same aluminium as the production cars' engine and is 15% larger than the W12 engine block.
Bentley Speed Edition 12: Expected Price and Electrification Plans
The final, most potent W12s will be used in the extremely limited Bentley Batur after production of the engine ceases in April 2024. The company will then concentrate its efforts on its selection of V6 hybrid and V8 engines, with a goal of fully electrifying the line-up by 2030. Additionally, Bentley plans to start making battery electric vehicles in 2025, with one model expected each year in the second half of this decade.
There has been no announcement regarding prices of the Speed Edition 12, but given that the stock Speed models, irrespective of body style, cost upwards of $260k, it is safe to assume they are going to be priced higher.