Although Bentley experimented with diesel powertrains in previous years, company execs say that buyer prejudices, rather than technological limitations, will prevent them from coming to market.
Brian Gush, the man responsible for powertrains at Bentley, told Autocar that “…there’s a strong prejudice against them [diesels] in the US and Japan, which are key markets for us. The attitude of Chinese buyers is going to have a big effect on cars like ours in future, too, and they are none too keen. Those of us who know diesels can see the benefits, but in large parts of the world the cars just wouldn’t sell.”
Gush also cited new Euro 6 emissions standards as making the cost of a diesel engine uneconomical. Bentley will offer a 4.0L V8 for Continental buyers who want an alternative to the 6.0L W12 engine on the 2012 Continental GT.