Bentley is planning to expand its product lineup with a third model that will slot in beneath British brand’s current offerings. Company CEO Dr Franz-Josef Paefgen admitted as much to the folks at AutoExpress, during the official launch of the 2012 Continental GT at the Paris Auto Show.
The new car would take up the popular four-door coupe style and will compete with models like the Porsche Panamera and Maserati Quattroporte, as well as the Aston Martin Rapide. (Although with the Rapide’s almost $200,000 price tag, the proposed baby Bentley might instead find itself competing with the Rapide-based Lagonda saloon). In addition, it will also steal some customers from the Mercedes CLS and 4-door BMW 6 Series.
Priced at closer to the $100,000 mark the new Bentley 4-door would still leave plenty of room in the brand’s lineup for the Flying Spur.
Based on the A7 Sportback platform, it will use a considerably amount of aluminum to keep weight down and it likely to get a V8 engine (possibly a turbo unit developed with Audi) with around 450-hp.
The new model will help grow Bentley’s sales considerably and protect the brand from future recessions with a more affordable, high volume product offering.