Currently reading: Bentley marks 100th anniversary with Continental GT Number 9 Edition
Limited-edition Continental GT features design inspired by 1930 Le Mans-winning 4 1/2 Litre 'Blower' Bentley

Bentley is celebrating its centenary with a limited-run Continental GT Number 9 Edition by Mulliner, a design that echoes the 4 ½ Litre ‘Blower’ that raced at Le Mans in 1930. 

The special edition, on display at the Geneva show, will be made by Bentley’s Mulliner division and limited to 100 models.

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It will be offered in green or black, with a ‘9’ front grille graphic based on the race car driven by Sir Henry ‘Tim’ Birkin. It also features 21in, coloured 10-spoke wheels and a carbon bodykit.

The interior is offered in a choice of two trim colours, with special logos on the seat headrests and door panels similar to those on the Blower. The dashboard is finished in an ‘Engine Spin’ aluminium finish used in the 1930 race car. A British Jaeger clock, with a design based on the Blower Bentley’s dials, is mounted in the centre console.

Each model will also feature a wood insert taken from the seat of Birkin’s car, which was removed during a renovation, along with 18-carat gold-plated organ stops.

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The Number 9 Edition is unchanged mechanically from the standard car, featuring Bentley’s 626bhp 6.0-litre W12 engine. Pricing has not been disclosed, but the special edition will command a premium over the £159,100 starting price of the standard car.


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The Bentley 4 ½ Litre was developed in 1927, when Walter Owen Bentley developed the engine by removing two cylinders from a 6 ½ litre model. Birkin then produced five versions fitted with an Amherst-Villiers-produced supercharger to race at Le Mans, increasing output to 175bhp.

To mark its centenary year, every Bentley sold in 2019 will feature a number of special features, including a gold finish to the badges on the bonnet, boot and wheels. 

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James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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pauld101 5 March 2019

errr... Bentley error of the show award - full marks!!!

1930 Le Mans won by No 4 Bentley driven by Kidson and Benato.  No. 9 blew up its (A-V supercharged) engine and retired after twenty hours, to the disappointment of drivers Birkin and Chassange.  So, this is the 89th year anniversary special, then...?

Shame.  What a crying, crying shame.

That bloke 5 March 2019

Bentley, just wanted to say

Bentley, just wanted to say thank you so much for showing it in right-hand drive at a foreign car exhibition.  You know what customers like in 'Britishness' and understand it completely...whereas JLR doesn't understand it at all!  Thank you.

sevensixty 4 March 2019

Breathtakingly tacky

Unfortunately, I'd just eaten a car of chocolate when I saw this. Maybe it was that that left my stomach churning or was it this ghastly bit of '90s-style marketing tat. BMW did it was the MC40 Mini and one could almost take it, but this - no I'm not planning to have giant '9" on my grille. It will mean nothing to most people beyond indicating that its owner is daft enough to need a number on their car to know which one it is. 

Up there (or down there) with the McLaren Mercedes 710 "Stirling Moss" cynicism of a few years ago. Shameful.