Bentley’s Future Is Electric. But Not Before They Make the Last W12 Mulliner Batur
The 730-horsepower Batur is a love-letter to the W12 engine.
Bentley wants to become one of the most sustainable luxury car maker in the world, and it plans to start down that path in 2025. However, before it officially makes the switch over to electrification, it wants to give its now-iconic W12 one last ride with the all-new Bentley Mulliner Batur—essentially, a limited-run love letter to the engine.
Not only does the Batur use the twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12—here making 730 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque—it's also the most powerful version of the engine yet, and makes the Batur the most powerful production Bentley ever made. Bentley didn't just give it an ECU tune and call it a day, though. It has a new intake system, upgraded turbos, and updated intercoolers, too. The exhaust is now titanium and the tips are made from a Bentley-first 3D-printed titanium. Even the dashboard trim gets a visualization of the W12's soundtrack, further honoring the engine that's powered Bentleys for two decades.
Bentley only built 12 examples of the Bacalar, of its previous Mulliner project, but 18 of these new Baturs will be built and all are already accounted for. Each one will be heavily personalized to the customer's deepest desires, as the customization possibilities are endless, according to Bentley. Every surface, material, and color is available to customize; everything from the leather color to the material of the air vent surrounds. There are also some unique options never before seen on Bentleys before, such as 3D-printed 18-karat gold stop-air vent controls.
Despite the gas-guzzling W12, Bentley added some new sustainable materials to the Mulliner Batur. For example, there's low-carbon leather sourced from Scotland (whose shorter ship distance emits fewer emissions than usual), sustainable tannage leather from Italy, carpets made from recycled yarn, a sustainable suede alternative called Dinamica, and natural fiber composites.
The Batur launched at Pebble features a relatively uninspired Beluga black interior, but at least it's accented by Hotspur (red) and Hyperactive (orange) flourishes. A unique "Batur Chevrons" pattern adorns the front seats, as well as the grille. The gloss black dash trim isn't particularly premium-looking but at least it gets anodized aluminum and satin titanium metalwork, as well as an 18-karat gold drive selector to spice things up.
On the outside, the Batur's grille admittedly looks similar to the Bacalar's, but at least it gets the same red-tinted chevron pattern as the interior. The Batur does have brand-new headlights, which look like pretty little teardrops, rather than the larger circles of both the Bacalar and Conti GT, and there's an all-new front bumper with new air intakes. It looks a bit thicker and more muscular than either the Bacalar or Continental GT, too. Bentley ditched its C-pillar kink for the Batur in favor of a simpler, flat window line. Its chunky 22-inch wheels are all-new, and its rear wheel arches look more swollen than they do on either of its aforementioned siblings. Bentley calls it a "resting beast stance," which is said to evoke images of lions in a low-lying attack position.
I guess that resting beast stance is something Bentley takes to heart, as the Batur has the most advanced chassis technology ever fitted to a Bentley. It's still built on the same platform but gets a new three-chamber adjustable air suspension, an active anti-roll system, and an electronically controlled limited-slip diff. New CSiC carbon silicone-carbide brakes get 10-piston calipers up front and four-piston clampers out back.
However, it's all about the W12. Bentley claims its W12 engine to be the most advanced 12-cylinder engine in the world and, considering there really aren't many other 12-cylinder engines left on the market, it's probably right. Bentley is also going to begin its switch to electrification in just a few short years, so it's possible that the 730-hp Batur will remain the most powerful internal combustion Bentley in history.
Oftentimes, these uber-exclusive luxury cars at Pebble Beach don't come with price tags. If you gotta ask, you probably can't afford it, right? However, each of the 18 Bentley Mulliner Baturs will cost £1.65 million, excluding taxes and fees, which comes out to approximately $1.9 million. Each car can take several months to produce, especially if the customer requests more challenging customizations, but Bentley expects deliveries to begin in mid-2023.
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