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The motor has a sporty exhaust note and a strong mid-range

Performance – The Bentley Bentayga comes with a slew of engine options but the car we are testing here is the petrol V8 (there is a diesel V8 too with triple charging) that uses the 4.0-litre bi-turbo unit to output 542 HP of power and 770 Nm of torque between 1960 to 4500 RPM. 0-100 km/hr comes up in 4.5 seconds and top speed is 290 km/hr, meanwhile, the Bentayga Speed with the W12 engine is the fastest SUV in the world with a top speed of 306 km/hr (just 1 km/hr up on the Lamborghini Urus which has 4-cylinders less). However, the Bentayga petrol V8 strikes the best balance between performance and frugality as it is not only ample fast but quite efficient too (the engine shuts 4-cylinders at low speeds to reduce consumption and there is a start-stop system too)!

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8-speed AT gearbox provides slick shifts and also gets paddle shifters

Refined yet punchy when you need, this Twin-Turbo V8 motor has dual personalities & stupendous pulling power

The motor is very refined and smooth, lag is well contained and the punch is strong in the mid and top-end of the rev range. In fact, the exhaust note is very sporty and the Bentayga picks up pace swiftly to reach high speeds in no time at all, this in spite of it just being a V8! Simply put, the Bentayga is a very fast and exciting SUV to drive with more than enough performance you would ever need. The 8-speed automatic gearbox is fast with shifts and you can manually take control of the cogs too. Fuel efficiency is decent at 4-7 km/l which coupled with the 85-litre tank, gives the Bentayga a good driving range.

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Steering provides great feedback making this Bentley very fun to drive

Driving Dynamics – The Bentley Bentayga weighs 2395 kgs but doesn’t feel its weight at all. Bentley claims a weight saving of 236 kgs thanks to the light-weight aluminium structure. Handling is excellent as the Bentayga feels agile and sure-footed with plenty of grip, great feel and feedback from the steering wheel, inspiring you to push this rather heavy and high-riding vehicle around the corners, this is aided by the electric anti-roll bar with a 48V system that curtails body roll to a great extent. The great handling and excellent powertrain performance give this British SUV a very fun to drive feel.

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The Bentayga is also pretty capable off the road as it is on the road

Despite its weight, the Bentayga feels very agile around the corners, has sensational ride quality & superb brakes

In spite of the stiffer suspension and handling oriented set-up, the ride quality is nothing short of fantastic – what a balanced set-up! Using air suspension with continuous damping control, the Bentayga takes bad roads in its stride with utmost confidence and composure. There are 4 ride height settings and the Bentayga has a comprehensive mode for off-road driving where its ample ground clearance and a slew of electronics highlight its off-road prowess. The Bentayga’s red brake callipers are temperature resistant and the front brakes are the largest of any production car, ensuring excellent stopping power.