There's a third choice: a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 gasoline engine that makes 550 hp (542 bhp) at 6,000 rpm and 770 Nm (568 lb-ft) of torque between 1,960 and 4,500 rpm. Top speed also positions it just below the 12-cylinder model: the V8 touches 290 km/h (180 mph) while the W12 tops out at 301 km/h (187 mph).
The Bentayga V8's 2395kg kerb weight to the Diesel's 2506 and the W12's 2440kg means that efficiency is up, too, with stop-start technology contributing to claimed average fuel economy of 24.8mpg and Carbon dioxide emissions of 260g/km to the other cars' respective 35.8mpg and 210g/km and 21.6mpg and 296g/km. Aiding the emissions figure is start-stop technology that can activate when the vehicle is at "near-to-stop" speeds.
The Bentley Bentayga SUV range is being extended with a new V8-engined model. According to the automaker, these are the largest brake discs to ever be installed in a Bentley and the largest front brake system available on any production auto, measuring 440 mm with ten-piston calipers at the front and 370 mm at the back. To help move all that weight around, the Bentayga V8 introduces a new 48-volt Bentley Dynamic Ride suspension.
The usual array of active safety and driver assistance systems are standard or offered as options, including adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition, park assist and even a night vision system.
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Bentley's standard infotainment system is also fitted, featuring an 8in touchscreen, 60-gigabyte hard drive, and for passengers in the rear there's a 10.2in Android tablet device with 4G WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.
A Bentley isn't complete without a deeply luxurious interior and the Bentayga V8 is no exception.
Styling additioons to the new model include a black and chrome grille and twin-quad exhaust pipes at the rear. The same four, five or seven-seat layout as other models can be specified, along with a near-endless combination of trim materials and high-quality leathers.
Visually there's not too much to distinguish the V8 from the W12, but inside you do get a new wood and hide steering wheel and high gloss carbon fibre trim (although we're sure Bentley will let you have whatever you want).