Geneva show: meeting the bosses
Jason Barlow pumps the big names at Bentley, Maserati and Porsche for exclusive industry secrets
Posted: 06 Mar 2014
Wolfgang Schreiber is one of the VW group’s leading lights, with the DSG and Bugatti Veyron on his CV. Bentley’s motor show stand is like some sort of modernist country club, with a bridge and leather armchairs and all sorts.
Schreiber is less naturally pin-striped than his predecessors Wolfgang Durheimer and Franz-Josef Paefgen, but he knows his shizzle. The Bentley SUV is signed off, thankfully in wholly different form from 2012’s aberrant concept monstrosity.
It’ll be the first Bentley to feature a hybrid power-train – a plug-in system, offering up to 30 miles of electric propulsion alone, arrives in 2017 – and it’ll be made in Crewe, creating 1000 new jobs at the factory and in the supplier infrastructure (the man from the Daily Mail was delighted).
‘Hybrid is probably the easiest solution for our customers to understand,’ Schreiber says, ‘and offers the most Bentley-like solution to our performance needs.’
Downsizing is unlikely to happen here, though. ‘I can’t imagine a four-cylinder, 2.0-litre in a Bentley,’ the boss says. Nor will there be a super sports car to fill the stratospheric gap between the Lamborghini Aventador and Bugatti Veyron, though Schreiber admits he’s looking at the space below the Continental GT.