India gets its most expensive SUV--Bentley Bentayga at Rs 3.78 crore

Sumant Banerji   New Delhi     Last Updated: June 7, 2018  | 20:24 IST
India gets its most expensive SUV--Bentley Bentayga at Rs 3.78 crore

Iconic British car maker Bentley has launched its most powerful version of its only SUV Bentayga in India at a jaw dropping Rs 3.78 crore on Thursday.

Powered by a new generation 4.0-litre, twin-turbocharged eight cylinder V8 petrol engine that has a peak output of 542 horsepower and torque of 770 Newton metre, the car comes with technology that can de-activate four of its eight cylinders when not required helping its carbon footprint and fuel economy. The company claims despite its bulk--it weighs over 3 tonnes, it has a mileage of  nearly 9 kilometers to a litre. In terms of raw performance, it has a top speed of 290 kilometer per hour and can sprint from 0-100 kph in 4.4 seconds.

Further, it also comes with the widest range of on- and off-road drive settings offered with any vehicle today. Bentley's Drive Dynamics Mode and optional All-Terrain Specification has  up to eight modes (four on- and four off-road) allowing drivers, at the simple turn of a dial, to select the appropriate vehicle settings for a wide range of off-road surfaces, including Snow & Grass, Dirt & Gravel, Mud & Trail and Sand Dunes.

"Bentley is the world leader in luxury mobility and has been defining new luxury in the automotive world. The Bentayga V8 shares the same sleek lines as the other models in the Bentayga range, but adds some distinctive features to create an edgier exterior that matches the car's dynamic feel," said Satya Bagla, Managing Director, Exclusive Motors, the official importer for Bentley in India . "The newest addition to the range, Bentayga V8, is everything Bentayga was designed to be, balancing exquisite refinement with astonishing performance."

Bentayga was one of the first of the super SUVs to be launched in the world, a trend that has fast caught on and become a rage today. Last month, arch rival Rolls Royce showcased its own SUV, also a first, the Cullinan which is due to hit the roads next year. Rolls Royce has claimed the Cullinan would take over the crown of world's most powerful SUV from Bentayga and its suggested price tag of around Rs 5 crore (with taxes in India) suggests it would also be the most expensive.

While traditional wisdom said ultra high net-worth individuals prefer ostentatious chauffeur-driven saloons or thoroughbred made-for-the-track sports cars over the all-terrain capability of an SUV, years of stagnant or single digit growth in sales in the industry, has prompted almost all the big super luxury car makers to look at an SUV to attract the attention of younger customers. For example, since its launch in 2016, Bentayga has by far been Bentley's best selling model. In 2017 it accounted for over 50 percent of the company's global sales.

With more companies like Ferrari joining the fray, the trend will only gather more momentum. According to IHS, in 2014, 14,900 units of super luxury SUVs were sold. As Bentayga and Maserati Levante hit the roads, sales grew to 26,750 units in 2016. By 2020, the numbers are expected to swell to 40,000.

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