The Continental GT V8 S is remarkably efficient, due in no small part to the use of variable displacement. At less aggressive throttle openings, the engine switches off four of its eight cylinders, so they only act as gas springs. This delivers two benefits: the four operative cylinders are more efficient, while frictional and gas transfer losses throughout the engine are greatly reduced.
As soon as the car accelerates, the other four cylinders switch back on, giving more power the moment it is needed. Switchable hydraulic engine mounts change to a ‘soft’ state while the car is idling to improve isolation from vibration, yet instantly switch back to a ‘hard’ state when the car is driven more dynamically to reduce roll and improve performance.
A 32-bit TriCore™ microprocessor sits at the heart of the engine management system, ensuring that all of these mode changes are made with imperceptible smoothness – much like the gear changes, thanks to the 8-speed transmission.