Bentley’s upcoming SUV has been signed off for production and is set to enter the market in late-2016 or early-2017. However, according to company design chief Luc Donkerwolke, the SUV won’t be related to the EXP 9 F concept car.
“The design is now signed off for production,” states Donkerwolke. “The concept is completely set apart and was done separately. After Geneva 2012, I was told to do a new one. It’s completely different to the concept car.”
From recent prototype pictures, it’s apparent that the interior will retain traditional Bentley elements like wood, metal and leather. A digital instrument cluster with heads-up display, as well as newly designed air vents, have also made their way into the prototype. Bentley is planning to have third-row seating in the new SUV, but it’s not clear whether it will be standard or optional.
Also unknown is what engine Bentley will use, but there have been rumors surrounding Bentley’s current V8 and V12 engines as options, although the automaker has confirmed a plug-in hybrid system. Production should commence at Bentley’s main facility in Crewe, England, with a decision on the vehicle’s name to be made soon.