Bentley's new W12-powered Batur is one of the most bespoke and overly opulent cars it's ever made. It features an entirely unique body design, the most powerful version of its W12 engine ever, and it even has 3D-printed 18ct gold accents inside.
The latter is something Bentley is especially proud of. Inside the Batur, you'll find a 3D-printed gold Charisma Dial—which is the dial on the center console that surrounds the starter button and controls the car's driving modes—and the organ-stop vent controls. There's even a gold accent on the steering wheel.
The 3D-printing of precious metals isn't anything new, nor is the technique Bentley uses to make its gold accents. It's done by melting gold powder, layer by layer, to create the shapes needed. While not particularly groundbreaking, 3D-printing gold powder is far more expensive than crafting traditional interior parts. However, Bentley claims that using 3D-printed gold is an automotive industry-first, something Batur customers will like hearing.
Bentley is making these gold parts responsibly, though, as Bentley plans be a completely carbon-neutral company by 2030. The gold powder Bentley uses is made from old, used 18ct gold jewelry. And then once the parts are made, they're sent to artisan jewelers in England, who hand finish and polish every piece the old fashioned way, mixing old-school and new-school techniques. All gold parts are then hallmarked in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter and any gold parts made in 2022 get the Jubilee hallmark, to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee year.
Expect Bentley to put out even more 3D-printed bits in the future. Earlier this year, Bentley committed to investing £3 million into the Crewe factory to double its 3D-printing capabilities. While it isn't always going to use gold, there are plenty of other rare, precious materials that can be used and you can bet that the team in Crewe is going to get creative.
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