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Bentley Continental GTC (2011-2018) Review

heycar editorial team

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heycar editorial team

Bentley Continental GTC
Bentley Continental GTC

1/10

1 / 10

00/10
heycar rating
"Potent, prestigious and premium convertible"
  • Launched: 2011
  • Convertible
  • Petrol

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Quick overview

Pros

  • Genuinely effortless luxury
  • Beautiful interior is a real haven
  • It’s a brilliantly adept everyday drive

Cons

  • W12 is extremely thirsty
  • This is a big, heavy car, with high-end running costs
  • Keen drivers will find an Aston Martin or Porsche more exciting

Bentley Continental GTC cars for sale on heycar

28
Number of cars available
£80K - £195K
Price bracket of these cars
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Colours available on heycar
2 doors
Door options available

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Bentley Continental GTC Exterior Front

Overall verdict

Bentley Continental GTC Interior

On the inside

Bentley Continental GTC Driving

Driving

Bentley Continental GTC Driving Back

Cost to run

Bentley Continental GTC Driving Front

Prices and Specs

Common questions

Common questions

Overall verdict

"The Bentley Continental GTC is a brawny British GT car and a powerful take on the world of open-top motoring. It is muscular and effortless to drive, yet finished to the highest standards and boasts the finest luxury. Four-seat motoring is rarely more appealing."

Bentley Continental GTC Exterior Front

You would expect no less, given what it cost when new. And just a few minutes with the Bentley options list often saw five-figure sums added on top. Nonetheless, such is the unique appeal of the Continental GTC, its exclusive clientele were happy to buy into the dream.

 

Besides, this is a big, commanding car that has a real presence on the road. It’s a purposeful machine that oozes power, from its quad-headlight front end with the famous (and frequently copied) Bentley grille, to its powerful haunches and, with the roof down, highly alluring interior.

 

Ultra-luxurious convertibles are pretty rare propositions, and the fact the Continental GTC can take four well-heeled passengers to, say, Royal Ascot in such refined comfort defines its appeal. Even if the daily reality might be ferrying the kids to school and back.

 

And that’s a likely scenario for the Bentley. It’s such a great all-rounder, many lucky owners use it as a daily-driver, helped in no small part by its brilliant refinement, effortless power and capable all-wheel drive.

 

Even its convertible roof adds to the comfort. This is a luxury car, so has a luxury soft-top, made from multiple layers and padded with noise-isolating materials. The heated rear window is acoustic glass, no less. With the roof up, it’s as snug as the Continental GT coupe.

 

Launch models from 2011 came with a monster of an engine, a 6.0-litre W12 twin-turbo. It produced a colossal 575PS, which gave this 2.5-tonne machine the acceleration of a supercar. A later 507PS 4.0-litre V8 turbo was almost as fast and gave the GTC a boost in economy, from horrendous to merely poor. You can spot them by their ‘figure of eight’ exhaust pipes and red Bentley ‘B’ badges.

 

We love the W12 and driving it is an experience in itself. With 700Nm of torque, it has brawn by the bucketload, making any journey utterly effortless. It will also do 195mph, but that 17mpg thirst may eventually frustrate you. So we’d perhaps choose the plenty-quick-enough V8 instead: it still has 660Nm of torque, but will manage 26mpg, meaning fewer stops to fill the giant fuel tank.  

 

The model line-up at launch was simple: just the Continental GTC W12. The V8 followed a little later, with a W12 GTC Speed performance range-topper arriving in summer 2012. This produced even more power, 625PS, for a remarkable top speed of over 200mph. Suspension was given a thorough makeover, too (and even bigger brakes fitted).

 

Whichever version you choose, the Bentley Continental GTC is guaranteed to deliver an imperiously upper-class drive to soothe even the most frayed nerves. It is powerful, has presence, and there are few finer ways to enjoy open-top motoring. It’s expensive, but just one drive will be enough to convince you it’s worth it.


If you're looking for the newer version, you need our Bentley Continental GT (2018-) review.


Is the Bentley Continental GTC right for you?

Obviously you need to have a healthy bank balance: there’s no such thing as a bargain Bentley. But it’s easy to see where your money goes – if you’re looking for one of the world’s finest luxury drop-tops, the Continental GTC ought to be right up your street.

 

Both engines are incredibly powerful, and the four-wheel-drive system deploys this power completely without fuss or hesitation. It’s a potent long-distance tourer, and one that asks for little effort from its driver.

 

The real highlight comes when you drive it more slowly, though. Even with the roof down, the interior is a haven of isolation and decadence, feeling fit for royalty (and more than likely earning you a few glances from passers-by).

 

It really depends how bespoke the original owner wanted the interior – and how much they wanted to spend. Bentley builds all its cars as custom creations, and if you really want to go all-out and make a machine worth a quarter of a million pounds, you can. If you want the coupe version, you'll need the Bentley Continental GT (2010-2018).


What’s the best Bentley Continental GTC model/engine to choose?

The core of the Continental GTC range is the W12 engine. This is a unique Bentley motor and is so popular, it’s helped the firm become the biggest manufacturer of 12-cylinder engines in the world. There’s nothing like it, particularly the souped-up Speed version.

 

Truth be told, there’s nothing like its thirst either. You can almost literally watch the fuel gauge go down. Even if you have the means to afford this, the frequent refuelling stops will become tiresome.

 

That’s why our favourite Continental GTC is the V8, which has a charismatic feel of its own. It’s still beautifully refined, of course, but the more focused throb of a throaty V8 seems more fitting for a Bentley. It’s hardly any slower than the W12 either – you still have an excess of power – and there’s the added convenience of almost 50 percent better fuel economy.


What other cars are similar to the Bentley Continental GTC?

Rivals at this end of the market are a select bunch indeed. There’s the Ferrari California and its Portofino successor, for those who want a more vibrant interpretation of four-seat luxury motoring. There’s also the Rolls-Royce Dawn for even more exclusive open-top British decadence. And straddling the two somewhat, there’s the Aston Martin Vanquish Volante.

 

The Porsche 911 Cabriolet is very much a 2+2, rather than a proper four-seater. But it’s such a popular supercar, it’s hard to ignore. There’s also the Mercedes-Benz SL: it’s cheaper, and only seats two, but has built such a reputation over more than four decades that it will frequently be considered an alternative.  


Learn more

Bentley Continental GTC Interior

On the inside

Bentley Continental GTC Driving

Driving

Bentley Continental GTC Driving Back

Cost to run

Bentley Continental GTC Driving Front

Prices and Specs

Common questions

Common questions

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