Hottest Sports Cars for 2007 - Bentley Continental GTC

. Sunday, September 2, 2007
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Bentley Continental GTC

A sexy, new convertible version of Bentley's Continental GT features a soft fabric top that stows neatly under a leather-lined cover for a sleek top-down look. Bentley's usual impeccable interior treatment makes the Continental GTC's cabin a feast for the senses. And with a 552-hp W12 engine and all-wheel drive, it's sure to set the heart racing.

The topless profile of the new Bentley Continental GTC convertible is drastically more attractive than that of the pudgy Continental GT coupe upon which it's based.

Lacking the elegant look of classic Bentleys, with their expansive hoods that seem to stretch for blocks, the Continental GT and GTC have modern, economy-car proportions: a short hood, bluff nose and rounded rump. The innovative and compact 552-hp twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 engine these baby Bentleys share (basically two V6 engines attached side by side) preempts the kind of long hood required by older Bentleys to accommodate the massive V8 and V12 engines of their day.

Find Bentley Continental GTC specs

Chopping the roof off of the Continental GT coupe somehow improves the aesthetic, making the GTC look longer and more elegant than its hardtop twin, even though it's the same length and width as the coupe.

Other than the multilayer, powered convertible fabric top, the Bentley Continental GTC is pretty much identical to the Continental GT, which is to say it should offer supercar performance with limousine-like comfort when it goes on sale late this year. It will have the same six-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission with manual-shift capability via paddles behind the steering wheel and will also feature all-wheel drive like the Continental GT.

Bentley Continental GTC Comparison

Bentley uses AWD in these vehicles instead of the traditional rear-wheel-drive setup of past models because it transfers the engine's monstrous power more safely and effectively to the road. Sophisticated stability control, traction control and braking systems further enhance safety.

See Bentley Continental GTC Pictures

The interior of the Bentley Continental GTC will be identical to that of the Continental GT coupe — except, judging from initial photos of the Continental GTC, it appears as if the rear seats are closer together to accommodate the retractable roof. The top stows completely out of view underneath a leather-lined cover and features a glass rear window with heating element.

Bentley Continental GTC Vehicle Summary

Bentley makes only one other convertible model, the ultra-rare and much more expensive full-size Azure, which is based on the Arnage sedan.

by Jim Gorzelany and Matthew de Paula