The Bentley Continental GT and GTC V8 has been unwrapped and it's a kinder, gentler bulldog that makes do with "just" 500 horsepower and 481 pound-feet from its 4.0-liter, twin-turbo V8. That is down 20 horsepower and up just 8 pound-feet from the output of the Audi S8, with which it shares the innovatively-packaged, cylinder-deactivating V8. We're going to guess that's to leave unquestionable space between it and the 631-hp Continental GT, and so Bentley could reach its 40 percent improvement goal with respect to emissions and gas mileage.
Specific numbers aren't divulged just yet, but it will get from standstill to 60 mph in under five seconds and will go more than 500 miles on a tank. Unless the tank size has changed from the 24-gallon receptacle in the big daddy W12, which we doubt, that means the V8 is good for at least 21 miles per gallon.
You'll be able to tell this one apart by its black grille with chrome accents, red Bentley "B" badge (red badges were traditionally used on sportier Bentleys, so we're not sure if that's meant to be a sign of this coupe's performance vs. the W12) and reworked treatment of the lower grille. The package rides on 20-inch wheels, same size as the flagship GT, but in back you'll find "figure-eight" tailpipes (which will quickly be swapped for something less obvious) and another red badge.
Both coupe and sedan will introduce themselves to rich buyers and not-so-rich voyeurs at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show. You'll find a press release after the jump with obligatory references to inconceivable colors like Dark Fiddleback Eucalyptus, and a high-res gallery of photos for much more understandable pleasures above.