The new Falcon may be a Bentley

Last updated 14:11 23/11/2012
Bentley EXP 9F SUV concept, will look different and is tipped to be called Falcon when it goes into production.

NEW LOOK: Bentley EXP 9F SUV concept, will look different and is tipped to be called Falcon when it goes into production.

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The Falcon badge may have a future after all – but on an uber-luxury Bentley SUV rather than the homegrown sedan.

Automobile magazine claims the new Bentley SUV – based on the widely panned EXP 9F concept revealed earlier this year – will be called the Falcon.

The magazine says the ultra-luxury soft-roader, which could become the most expensive SUV on the market, has been given the go-ahead.

In 2011, the VW-owned brand's chairman and CEO Wolfgang Durheimer told US site Motor Trend the ultra-luxury SUV would set a new benchmark for pricing.

''In terms of price, it would be positioned above everybody who is there already,'' Durheimer said.

The car should make it to production by 2015, meaning the local launch could come at the same time Ford pulls the plug on the local Ford Falcon.

Ford has guaranteed local production only until 2016, and many are tipping the Falcon will disappear then.

The Automobile report claims the polarising Bentley concept will be ''completely redesigned'' for the production model by newly appointed director of design Luc Donckerwolke. He's the man who was behind the 2002 Lamborghini Murcielago and 2004 Lamborghini Gallardo, as well as the iconic and quirky Audi A2 of the early 2000s.

The Falcon SUV is expected to be built on Volkswagen Group's new modular underpinnings used for future versions of the Audi Q7, Porsche Cayenne and VW Touareg, as well as a possible new Audi luxury SUV known as the Q8.

Automobile says the Q8 will be a ''coupe-like crossover'' that is expected to sell 25,000 units per year.

-Fairfax News Australia

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