Bentley makes only 18 examples of the Batur, and the company ensures that they are very special to the customer by using state-of-the-art manufacturing techniques. For example, the buyer has the option of loading the vehicle with up to 7,408 ounces (210 grams) of 3d printed gold. The brand believes this is the industry’s first technology application.
The 18k gold is most visible on the so-called Charisma Dial which surrounds the start/stop button on the center console and functions to change driver modes. Precious metals may also appear on the organ stop ventilation controls and the caret marker on the steering wheel.
The additive manufacturing process starts with a gold source. Bentley gets its materials from recycled jewelery pieces which go through a grinding process to a fine powder. Automakers create CAD models of new parts and use laser fusing printers to manufacture the parts. Then, a jeweler polishes each piece.
In February 2022, Bentley doubled its capacity to make 3D printed parts at its Crewe, UK plant. The luxury automaker intends to use the engine for low-volume manufacturing such as when a customer has a personalization request.
There are already buyers for the entire Batur production process. Bentley is now conducting public testing of two prototypes. One was the bespoke body-coloured Purple Sector (above), and traveled 1,553 miles (2,500 kilometers) via Germany, Italy, France and Spain.
Separately, Batur’s twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 has had more than 100 weeks of development. It is the most powerful application engine ever available to consumers, with an output of 730 horsepower (544 kilowatts) and 738 pound-feet (1,000 newton-meters) of torque.
A grand-touring coupe needs to be comfortable on the road. It has air suspension and an active anti-roll bar. Four-wheel steering should keep the machine agile.
Bentley allows customers to personalize their Batur cabin. Available materials include Scottish wool and Italian leather. Carpets can be made from recycled yarn.
Each Batur starts at £1.65 million ($2.02 million at current exchange rates) before the buyer’s option. Bentley plans to start deliveries in mid-2023.