Bentley celebrates centenary with EXP 100 GT luxury autonomous vehicle

Bentley has revealed its vision of a future autonomous, zero-emission luxury vehicle in the form of the EXP 100 GT.

Built to celebrate the brand’s 100th birthday, the new model features self-driving technology, electric propulsion and sustainably sourced materials.

Designed to reimagine the Grand Tourer segment ‘for the world of 2035’, the EXP 100 GT features a choice between getting behind the wheel yourself or opting for autonomous driving.

The intelligent self-driving system would understand when a spirited drive is required, for example on a mountain pass, or whether a smoother, more relaxing drive might be preferred.

It is powered by a battery-electric powertrain that uses a motor on each wheel, offering all-wheel-drive and torque vectoring to provide increased grip. Bentley claims the 0-60mph time would be 2.5 seconds with a top speed of 186mph.

Over the next decade or so, range anxiety should have been eradicated, as Bentley imagines a range of 435 miles on a full battery — while charging would take just 15 minutes to go from zero to 80 per cent.

The cabin itself is built for luxury, with plenty of space for occupants and an intelligent personal assistant that can be controlled through hand gestures. Bentley is also keen to demonstrate the importance of sustainability, using recycled rice husks for the paint, organic leather-like textiles for the upholstery and natural materials such as wood where possible.

The body is made from aluminium and carbon-fibre, and its design is inspired by some of the most iconic Bentley models of the past 100 years – with a modern twist.

Adrian Hallmark, Bentley chairman and chief executive, said: “Urbanisation continues to redefine the way people think about cars. Technology is bringing people closer together while posing serious questions about security and wellbeing.

“Climate change means that governments, companies and individuals must look for more sustainable ways to move forward, and Bentley can and will provide answers to these big questions.

“The birth of the automobile sparked a love affair with the freedom, self-expression, social mobility and personal space it brought. We believe that these values will remain at the heart of luxury travel and we are excited by the huge opportunities ahead, especially as the shift to new energy vehicles consigns all issues on emissions to the history books.”