What is it?
The updated-for-2016 version of the Continental GT Speed, driven in the UK for the first time.
Its modifications – for the most part – show Crewe tinkering with a light touch; inside, we’re talking revised seat quilting on the standard Mulliner spec interior, larger paddle shifters and some new dials. Outside, to go with the new Bentley family front bumper, the Speed incorporates a bespoke diffuser and rear spoiler, the latter popping up from above the bootlid when things get sufficiently blurry.
This the Speed remains inordinately good at doing thanks to the repeat deployment of the mammoth 6.0-litre W12 engine, which continues to make the GT’s expansive engine bay look like Saddam’s spider hole. It retains the same 626bhp introduced at its last refresh, a bewildering output marshalled by the eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox and responsible for making the model a confirmed 200mph-plus Bentley.
Its status as the quickest GT means its maker has opted not to include the latest cylinder deactivation tech which makes the ‘standard’ W12 run as a slightly leaner six-pot in less demanding moments. Consequently, the fuel consumption is still rated at a heady 19.5mpg (think of that as a target to aim at), while its 338g/km CO2 emissions rank it above a Rolls-Royce Ghost. Prices start at £168,300.