2019 Bentley Continental GT Convertible is your 207-mph topless grand tourer
Bentley's lovely new Continental GT now offers wind-in-your-hair thrills.
Steven EwingFormer managing editor
Steven Ewing spent his childhood reading car magazines, making his career as an automotive journalist an absolute dream job. After getting his foot in the door at Automobile while he was still a teenager, Ewing found homes on the mastheads at Winding Road magazine, Autoblog and Motor1.com before joining the CNET team in 2018. He has also served on the World Car Awards jury. Ewing grew up ingrained in the car culture of Detroit -- the Motor City -- before eventually moving to Los Angeles. In his free time, Ewing loves to cook, binge trash TV and play the drums.
is a truly exquisite grand tourer. And at an event in Southern California this week, Bentley will reveal the next chapter of the second-generation Conti GT's story: the Convertible.
The new Continental GT
is a really pretty car, and I love the long, rakish C pillar. The Convertible strikes a different profile -- I like the downward slope of the rear deck, but only find it truly pretty when viewed with the top down. With the roof up, the Continental's profile isn't quite as elegant, though it retains the Coupe's strong rear haunch and taut body surfacing.
The top uses a new Z-fold design, and with its improved insulation and acoustics, results in a 3-decibel reduction in noise over its predecessor. In fact, Bentley says the new Continental GT Convertible is as quiet inside as the previous-generation Coupe.
Seven different roof colors are available: black, blue, claret (red), gray and a new tweed pattern. Bentley says the roof can be raised or lowered in 19 seconds, and can be operated while driving at speeds up to 30 miles per hour.
Inside, the GT Convertible looks to be as lovely as the Coupe, with a digital instrument cluster, flush-mounted buttons around the gear shifter and myriad leather and veneer choices, including the new Côtes de Genève metal finish. Bentley's new infotainment system -- essentially a reskinned version of Porsche's Communication Management software -- is housed on a 12.3-inch screen, with
connectivity. That screen can be housed within Bentley's nifty new rotating display, where the centerpiece of the dashboard can rotate to show either the infotainment system, a trio of gauges or just a flush panel that matches the rest of the trim. It's super cool.
At launch, the Continental GT Convertible will come with Bentley's 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged W12 engine, good for 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. According to Bentley, the Convertible will be able to sprint to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds, and continue on to a top speed of 207 mph. Despite its 375-pound weight penalty over the Coupe, the Continental GT Convertible is only one-tenth of a second slower in the 0-60 sprint.
Following its premiere in LA -- not at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show, oddly -- the Bentley Continental GT Convertible will go on sale in 2019. Pricing isn't available just yet, but it's fair to say it'll command a substantial premium over the Coupe's $214,600 asking price. Topless grand touring ain't cheap, y'all.