The Bentley Batur has begun real-world road trials across Europe. Following its debut at Monterey Car Week in August 2022 and attendance at numerous events for Bentley Customers, global media, and the public, two development Baturs are now starting a rigorous programme of tests to ensure the highest standards of vehicle performance and quality. The limited series of just 18 examples are due to begin deliveries mid-2023 after completion and sign-off of an extensive engineering program.
The validation activities include durability for both the engine and whole vehicle, environmental compatibility & sunlight simulation, high speed stability, aerodynamics, noise & vibration, and driving dynamics. More than 120 individual tests in all cover everything from the quality of the surface finish of the gold “organ stop” ventilation controls to the new W12 engine hardware and software. Over 58 weeks of vehicle validation have been scheduled across the two pre-series cars, supplementing 100+ weeks of vehicle development already completed to validate the increased engine power, making the Batur the most powerful Bentley in history with at least 740 PS.
The first activity for one of the developments Batur’s – Car #0 – is an extensive 2,500-kilometre drive across Europe to simulate real world conditions. The route leaves Germany and travels through Italy, France, and Spain before high-speed testing work is undertaken at proving grounds.
Paul Williams, Chief Technical Officer for Mulliner, comments:
“At the start of the project it was clear that this car had to be the ultimate GT and so every element from the exterior design, engine power and hand-crafted interior has been created without compromise.
“There are a number of unique features that bring new challenges. Even small details such as the angle of the diamond in the front grille representing the cylinder angle in the W12 engine have had to be considered. And even though there will only be 18 Baturs produced, the level of quality has to be identical to every one of the 15,000 cars Bentley is currently producing each year.”
At the proving grounds, Batur Car #0 will begin seven weeks of durability work on handling tracks, mixed road conditions, high speed testing and abusive surface conditions. During all these activities data and feedback are collated ensuring the technical targets are being met.
When the proving groundwork is complete, another 7,500 kilometres of real-world driving will be undertaken before environmental testing commences. In just under four weeks the car will endure 600 hours of solar loading – equivalent to five years in an Arizona desert. This is particularly important for the new sustainable materials used in the exterior components, as an alternative to carbon fibre.
All 18 Batur examples have already been reserved, including several by customers from the Middle East. The region is Bentley’s most successful market anywhere in the world for bespoke vehicles, these customers are particularly known for their appreciation of Mulliner’s craftsmanship. Mulliner’s design team guides each client through the design process, leading to a truly unique vehicle.
Customers will be able to specify the colour and finish of practically every surface of the Batur, to create a car as individual as they are. From the main exterior paint to the surface finish of the air vents, and literally everything in between, each customer will specify even the tiniest of details.
The Mulliner Bacalar was the first coach-built project in recent years which gave significant insight into Bentley’s customers and customer choice. For Batur an even greater selection of options has been developed, not only including colours, materials, and finishes, but also new technology such as the Mulliner by Naim Audio system. This takes the Naim Audio system from the Continental GT and transforms it with 20 new Focal speakers, exclusively configured for Batur and custom tuned into a truly immersive class-leading Audio experience.