Monterey Car Week bore witness to Bentley Motors’ latest highlight—a custom-made GT Speed that stands alone in its uniqueness, having found its new home with an American collector. Bentley’s indelible mark was once again etched on this prestigious event, where the spotlight shone on a contemporary reimagining of the original Continental GT Speed, a piece of automotive heritage.
A pivotal release that reverberated through Bentley’s modern chronicles, the 2003 Continental GT Speed propelled the marque into a new era, catalyzing an exponential surge in sales. The reverberations of this historic moment have rippled through time, resulting in the unveiling of three subsequent generations of the Continental GT series, each a testament to Bentley’s commitment to defining contemporary luxury automobiles.
Crafted under the skillful guidance of Mulliner, Bentley’s renowned bespoke division, the 2023 iteration of this singular vehicle draws inspiration from its ancestor, the inaugural Continental GT of 2003. Specifically, it pays homage to the VIN20001, which occupied the prestigious position of being the very first GT to emerge from Bentley’s Crewe facility.
The modern interpretation is adorned in Cypress Green paint, reminiscent of its muse. Inside its cabin, echoes of the original reverberate with Saddle leather and Burr Walnut veneer. While remaining rooted in heritage, the cabin does not shy away from subtle enhancements and refinements. A personalized touch is reflected in the treadplates, emblazoned with the sentiment, ’20 years of the Continental GT by Bentley Mulliner.’ Further homage is paid through stylized depictions of the 2003 and 2023 models, tastefully integrated into the fascia, center console, and outer sill.
A significant moment materialized as the two vehicles stood side by side at The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering—an exhibition that encapsulated the essence of Bentley’s celebrated journey spanning two decades. Notably, this exhibit also marked the ceremonial transfer of the 2023 edition to its new owner, a discerning American collector who graced The Quail with their presence.
While the Monterey Car Week unveiling was but the first chapter in this vehicle’s global voyage, a specially crafted Bentley ‘Baton’ now embarks on an odyssey across Europe, Asia, and the United States. This emblematic Baton, designed in-house to signify pivotal eras of the Continental GT’s legacy, will ultimately find its resting place at Bentley’s Crewe headquarters—a permanent testament to the continuum of excellence that defines Bentley’s narrative.