Bentley’s first all-electric vehicle will feature hands-off self-driving technology, it has been revealed. Speaking with UK outlet AutoCar, Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark confirmed that the British marque’s first EV will initially offer partial hands-off driving on motorways. Fully autonomous driving will come later, potentially through over-the-air software updates.
Although it was initially believed that Bentley’s upcoming EV would be a high-riding sedan or crossover, it could also be a sportier two-door coupe. Last year Hallmark revealed that Bentley’s first EV would have up to 1,400 horsepower and be capable of sprinting from 0-60 miles per hour in just 1.5 seconds.
Such stats are unlikely for a crossover, even in the electric age. That said, it’s still a possibility. Hallmark also hinted at a “slower version” of Bentley’s first EV aimed at customers who find the 1,400 hp variant uncomfortably quick.
Bentley will launch a new electric vehicle every year from 2025 through 2030. The luxury automaker is also investing over $3 billion into its Crewe facility to completely overhaul it for the electric era.
Britain’s other famed luxury manufacturer, Rolls-Royce, is set to launch its first EV this fall. Dubbed the Spectre, it’s a luxury coupe based on the same platform as the combustion-engined Phantom and Cullinan. The Spectre features a dual-motor layout and is powered by a 120-kilowatt-hour battery pack. The electric two-door has a claimed range of 310 miles. With a 4.4 second 0-60 mph time and top speed of 155 mph, the Spectre is more than quick enough – although it’s fair to say Bentley’s EV will probably come out ahead in a straight-line sprint.