Shaquile Coulthirst sought to give Torquay the lead early on, but his effort from distance was blocked by a defender on its way to goal.
Exeter responded by taking the lead with what was their first real chance, as Bennett got hold of a pass from Tom Nichols before slotting home into the bottom corner.
Torquay almost found an equaliser through Elliot Benyon who headed inches wide of the post, before City's Bennett almost doubled the lead but saw his effort blocked in front of goal.
Torquay initiated their comeback just after half time when Courtney Cameron produced a standout free-kick in the 52nd minute to curl the ball into the top corner with his left.
David Wheeler should have grabbed a late draw for the hosts, however he somehow managed to spoon the ball over the bar from only a few yards out in the closing stages.