Bentley Is Working On A Plug-In Hybrid SUV Code-Named Falcon

Bentley's already hulking limousines are getting an even bigger brother, with work underway on developing a SUV-size variant based on Audi's next-generation Q7. That SUV will apparently have a silent-running hybrid diesel- or petrol-electric version with around 50km of battery range. So you won't even hear it coming.

According to Car Magazine, the new Bentley SUV is code-named Falcon, and will be offered for sale as a plug-in hybrid, a first for the company that still uses a V8 first developed in 1959 in some of its cars.

That plug-in hybrid, which is set to be powered by either a petrol or Bentley's first diesel engine, will apparently get around 30 miles -- 50 kilometres -- from a complete plug-in charge of its battery system, in a similar vein to the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. Aluminium construction should see vehicle weights drop substantially from the existing 2500kg-plus Audi Q7, so the new Bentley might actually be slightly less planet-destroying than its ancestors.

Car is not especially kind about the Falcon's curves, though, saying it looks "a bit like a downsized Kenworth truck which has been treated by a Bavarian make-up artist." [Car Magazine]