The public unveiling of the Bentley Speed 6 two-seater concept at this year’s Geneva Motor Show was met by the “thunk” sound of the jaws of each Motrolix staff member collectively hitting the floor at once; it is a positively gorgeous creature.
But as the UK’s Autocar reports, there is a looming threat to the prospect of the sultry Bentley Speed 6 sportscar reaching production in the midterm, and that’s a possible small, future SUV.
As Bentley Motors CEO Wolfgang Dürheimer explained, the marque “can’t do both those cars at the same time, because Bentley is still a small company and our resources are very stretched. We are doing the studies for both those models and then we will decide on the fifth model.
“We have to see if we now need an SUV one size smaller than the new Bentayga.”
In other words, whether the roads will be graced with the gorgeous Bentley Speed 6 coupe, or a smaller counterpart to the forthcoming Bentayga SUV, all comes down to maths. Bentley Motors must try and accurately forecast sales projections for each proposed future vehicle, and then select which makes more sense to produce.
And that’s sort of the problem: Autocar notes that the automaker’s projected MSRP of the Bentley Speed 6 sportscar is about £180k – or over $280k US. A smaller sibling to the Bentayga, meanwhile, is expected to sticker at just £140k – $220k US, which would automatically give the ute an edge when it came to probably sales numbers. By-and-large, the SUV market also tends to be a higher-margin one, and one that is still on the rise.
But we’re not calling the time of death of the Bentley Speed 6 just yet; the British carmaker is giving itself until 2016 or 2017 to decide on which vehicle to produce in the midterm future. And the Motrolix staff isn’t alone in appreciating the thing’s innate beauty: “We have asked our customers and they have said about the Speed 6 ‘just build it!'” said Mr. Dürheimer.
“They see a big difference [between it and the Continental]. Many have said they would take both of them.”