2022 Bentley Flying Spur Hybrid Tested: Tradition in Transition

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UPDATE 7/28/22: This evaluate has been up to date with check outcomes.

The trickle of electrons at Bentley is quickly to turn out to be a flood, because the automaker prepares to completely electrify its total lineup by the top of the last decade. Whereas eventual full electrification is a purpose shared industry-wide, it is a quite monumental shift for Bentley, whose fame has been outlined largely by its large—and thirsty—engines. Therefore the existence of the Flying Spur Hybrid, a 5754-pound steppingstone positioned between the shores of these gargantuan powertrains and the horizon of complete electrification.

As befits this interim function, visible adjustments are stored to a minimal, with solely fender-mounted “Hybrid” badges and a J1772 charging port hid behind a door on the left rear flank. Distinct quad oval tailpipes full the outside transformation. Inside, the infotainment and driver screens now characteristic EV-specific readouts. We have been notably intrigued by the EV Vary overlay perform on the navigation map—a translucent inexperienced zone hovers over the automobile’s place, outlining the boundaries of electrical driving vary. Because the battery stage drops, the zone shrinks accordingly. On the middle console, an EV button cycles by means of the three electrical drive modes: all-electric EV Drive, Hybrid, and Maintain, which maintains battery cost to be deployed later.

Michael SimariAutomobile and Driver

The Flying Spur follows within the footsteps of the Bentayga, which first tiptoed into the hybrid waters again in 2019 as Bentley’s first electrified model. Each make use of plug-in techniques, as the massive battery delivers motivation {that a} common hybrid cannot present. Right here, the Flying Spur makes use of a 410-hp model of the company 2.9-liter twin-turbo V-6. It is the primary six-cylinder discovered underneath the hood of a Bentley sedan in 64 years. A 134-hp electrical motor occupies the house between the engine and eight-speed dual-clutch automated transmission. With a mixed output of 536 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque, the hybrid powertrain delivers numbers on par with its rowdier Flying Spur large brother’s 542-hp V-8.

Michael SimariAutomobile and Driver

HIGHS: Nonetheless fairly fast, significant EV vary, critically quiet inside.

In consequence, the hybrid’s efficiency is fairly comparable, regardless of a 280-pound weight drawback. With each motors singing and all 4 wheels pulling, the Flying Spur Hybrid hit 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and lined the quarter-mile in 12.3 seconds at 114 mph. (We recorded a 3.5-second time for the Flying Spur V-8, together with a 12.0-second, 115-mph move within the quarter.) High pace is proscribed to 177 mph, versus 198 for the V-8. Whereas Bentley emphasizes that the EV system is optimized for city journeys, it additionally touts the hybrid’s potential to cruise at speeds as much as 80 mph in EV Drive mode. The EPA reckons that the automobile’s 15.0-kWh battery is sweet for 21 miles of electrical vary. But, electrons carried us for 35 miles on our 75-mph freeway check, after which the hybrid averaged 28 mpg, beating its federal freeway ranking by 6 mpg. Nevertheless, our 25-MPGe measurement general is effectively in need of the hybrid’s official 46-MPGe mixed ranking, which basically signifies we drove extra gasoline-powered miles between plug-ins than an precise proprietor would.

Michael SimariAutomobile and Driver

The enjoyment of electrical thrust lies not in its mechanical voice, however within the absence of it. Bentley says that the cabin of the hybrid is 50 p.c quieter than that of the V-8’s at 50 mph. We measured a whisper-like 60 decibels at 70 mph versus 67 decibels within the V-8. By itself, the hybrid’s electrical motor produces 295 pound-feet of torque, all of which is on the market from a useless cease. It is greater than able to sustaining the massive Bentley’s momentum by means of visitors. It additionally helps the hybrid submit a 4.7-second run from 5 to 60 mph, which is barely a tenth of second longer than what the V-8 requires. When rolling alongside in EV Drive mode, the Flying Spur Hybrid offers a fabulous glimpse of what an all-electric Bentley may be like.

It is solely whenever you pattern Hybrid mode that this swish serenity is upended. Prod the accelerator and the V-6 unceremoniously crashes the social gathering with 74 decibels of noise at full throttle—1 decibel greater than the V-8. Gruff and guttural, the engine’s unrefined character is in complete distinction to the remainder of the underlying package deal. We discovered its presence to be notably obtrusive when in Maintain mode, droning away continually at what amounted to a heightened idle pace. Often, the gasoline engine and electrical motor jockeyed for place, leading to a quick hiccup as the pc scrambled to make peace between the 2. And a pronounced transition between common and regenerative braking made it troublesome to easily modulate to a cease.

Michael SimariAutomobile and Driver

LOWS: Unrefined engine noise, better mass, not out there with the Flying Spur’s fancier chassis and suspension tech.

Retaining the battery charged avoids this morsel of powertrain inelegance. The 7.2-kW onboard charger can totally replenish the battery in three hours, in line with the EPA. We suspect most house owners will depend on devoted home-charging tools quite than cool their heels at a public station. That is simply as effectively, because the Flying Spur’s charging-port placement and substantial size make it difficult to squeeze into crowded bays, as we found. Talking of maneuverability, the Spur’s rear-wheel steering and the 48-volt lively anti-roll bars aren’t on the choices record, as the majority of the hybrid parts now occupy the house usually reserved for them.

Michael SimariAutomobile and Driver

In consequence, you are feeling each little bit of the 125.8-inch wheelbase going by means of turns. When navigating twisty, difficult roads, we found that the hybrid was happiest with a extra deliberate nook entry. Regardless of the dearth of the lively anti-roll system, the remainder of the chassis nonetheless retains the Flying Spur’s unbelievable sense of dexterity, because of the three-chamber air suspension and adaptive dampers. Using on 22-inch Pirelli P Zero PZ4 summer time tires, our check automobile posted a stable 0.90 g of grip across the skidpad, together with a decent 158-foot cease from 70 mph. For comparability, the lighter V-8 model on its equally sized Pirelli P Zero All Seasons generated 0.94 g of stick but wanted an extra 10 toes to cease from 70 mph. When the street unwinds, the default Bentley drive mode offers a commendable dynamic steadiness, although it’s kind of floatier than we might like. Conversely, the dampers in Sport are a tad too uneven. We might foyer for a setting that cut up the distinction. Bentley Plus, maybe.

In a current survey of its prospects, Bentley found that roughly half of them expressed curiosity in both buying a PHEV or EV automobile. However at this juncture, the hybrid model of the Flying Spur is lacking these few key traits that make the gas-powered variants so delightfully partaking. For these early adopters, nonetheless, the hybrid’s tough edges may be a tolerable tradeoff.

Specs

Specs

2022 Bentley Flying Spur Hybrid

Car Sort: front-engine, mid-motor, all-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 4-door sedan

PRICE

Base/As Examined: $213,325/$281,825

Choices: Mulliner Driving Specification w/different wheel (22-inch 10-spoke Darkish Gray and Shiny machined wheels, sport pedals, lofted diamond seat quilting, three-dimensional leather-based door panels, leather-based headliner, embroidered Bentley emblems, particular end gas and oil caps), $20,295; Styling specification (carbon-fiber entrance splitter, rear diffuser, trunk-mounted lip spoiler, Bentley-branded aspect sills), $12,245; Naim for Bentley 2200-watt, 19-speaker premium audio, $8970; Touring specification (adaptive cruise, head-up show, evening imaginative and prescient, lane help, Bentley Safeguard Plus), $8640; Bentley 3-sided rotating heart infotainment show, $6490; Blackline specification black exterior trim detailing, $4830; 4-seat configuration w/full size heart console, $4435; inside temper lighting and illuminated sills, $2595

POWERTRAIN

twin-turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 24-valve 2.9-liter V-6, 410 hp, 406 lb-ft + AC motor, 134 hp, 295 lb-ft (mixed output: 536 hp, 553 lb-ft; 15.0-kWh lithium-ion battery pack; 7.2-kW onboard charger)

Transmission: 8-speed dual-clutch automated

CHASSIS

Suspension, F/R: management arms/multilink

Brakes, F/R: 16.5-in vented disc/15.0-in vented disc

Tires: Pirelli P Zero PZ4

F: 275/35ZR-22 104Y Further Load B

R: 315/30ZR-22 107Y Further Load B

DIMENSIONS

Wheelbase: 125.8 in

Size: 209.3 in

Width: 77.9 in

Top: 58.4 in

Passenger Quantity: 102 ft3

Trunk Quantity: 12 ft3

Curb Weight: 5754 lb

C/D TEST RESULTS

60 mph: 3.9 sec

100 mph: 9.4 sec

1/4-Mile: 12.3 sec @ 114 mph

130 mph: 16.1 sec

150 mph: 22.6 sec
Outcomes above omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.

Rolling Begin, 5–60 mph: 4.7 sec

High Gear, 30–50 mph: 2.8 sec

High Gear, 50–70 mph: 3.0 sec

High Velocity (mfr’s declare): 177 mph

Braking, 70–0 mph: 158 ft

Braking, 100–0 mph: 312 ft

Roadholding, 300-ft Skidpad: 0.90 g

C/D FUEL ECONOMY

Noticed: 25 MPGe

75-mph Freeway Driving, EV/Hybrid Mode: 76 MPGe/28 mpg

75-mph Freeway Vary, EV/Hybrid mode: 35/580 mi

EPA FUEL ECONOMY

Mixed/Metropolis/Freeway: 19/17/22 mpg

Mixed Gasoline + Electrical energy: 46 MPGe

EV Vary: 21 mi

C/D TESTING EXPLAINED


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