Next-gen Bentley Continental to get hybrid powertrain?

The hybrid system is expected to be borrowed from the Porsche Cayenne plug-in hybrid.

Bentley is reportedly developing its next-generation Continental with a hybrid variant in mind.

The coupe is expected to borrow the Porsche Cayenne S' E-Hybrid plug-in hybrid system, according to Autocar. If the specs match, a V6 and electric motor will deliver a combined 416 horsepower and 435 lb-ft of torque.

The system propels the Cayenne to 62 mph in 5.4 seconds, with a top speed of 151 mph. Drivers can also cruise on electricity alone for up to 14 miles before switching to the gasoline engine.

The redesigned Continental will be built upon Volkswagen Group's MSB platform, shared with the second-generation Porsche Panamera. Aside from the PHEV edition, buyers will also likely face a choice between a 600-horsepower W12 powerplant and a revised 4.0-liter V8.

Bentley will switch to an aluminum body and high-strength steel for structural components, likely shedding a few hundred pounds from the current Continental's 5,115-pound curb weight.

At the top of the spectrum, the company is rumored to be working on a new Continental flagship with at least 700 horsepower. It is expected to be offered in a rear-wheel-drive configuration, with carbon-fiber body panels and trim pieces to further reduce heft.

The next-generation car could be revealed in 2017, arriving in showrooms for the 2018 model year.

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