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FACTS & FIGURES

BENTLEY- THE COMPANY

  • Bentley was founded in 1919 by Walter Owen Bentley, or "W.O." as he was known
  • W.O. Bentley's Mission statement is as true today as it was then "To build a fast car, a good car, the best in its class"
  • The first Bentley car, EXP 1, was completed in London in 1919
  • Cricklewood was the first home of Bentley, producing cars until 1931
  • Rolls-Royce bought the company for £125,275 in 1931. From then on production moved to Derby until 1940, where the famous Derby Bentleys were made
  • The Pyms lane factory was built in1938, originally to manufacture the Merlin engine - 26,065 engines were built between 1938 and 1946
  • Car production commenced at Crewe in 1946, the first Bentley to roll off the production line was the Mark VI
  • In 1998 Bentley was acquired by VW, since then the site has seen £1billion of investment
  • There are 4,000 Bentley employees worldwide - Bentley has been named as one of Britains Top Employers for two years running
  • Bentley operates in 58 countries, with 193 sales sites
  • 10,120 cars were delivered in 2013, a 19 per cent increase on 2012
  • The Americas is Bentley's largest market, with 3,140 cars delivered to customers in 2013. China follows a close second, with 2,191 cars delivered. The UK is third with 1,381 cars
  • Operating profit for 2012 was €100.5m
  • Exports accounted for 86 per cent of Bentley's total turnover in 2013.
  • According to latest figures, Bentley has a market share of 25 per cent, and is the leading luxury car maker in the world. In other words: one in four cars sold above €150,000 is a Bentley.
  • Bentley is the third largest automotive R&D investor in the UK, and in the top 20 overall
  • Over the past 10 years Bentley has donated £500,000 to local and national charities
  • Bentley works in partnership with various establishments across the world. Bentley places include a dining room at Mosimanns in London, the Bentley Suite in St Regis NY and Bentley commissioned barber chairs in Pankhurst London

BENTLEY - THE FACTORY

  • The Bentley Motors factory is a fully integrated site – all aspects of car production from Design, Engineering, Manufacture, Quality, and Sales & Marketing take place in Crewe
  • Bentley offers factory tours to both customers and members of the public, 5,221 people visited Bentley in 2012
  • The site covers an area of 434,891m2 , with 151,522m2 indoors
  • 3,600 employees are based at the Pyms Lane site
  • Pyms Lane is also home to the largest Bentley Boutique, which sells over 130 items from the Bentley Collection range. Popular items include a black and red leather weekender bag, a Bentley pen and USB in the shape of  Bentley key fob
  • The solar panel installation on the factory roof is the largest in the UK. 20,000 panels totaling 5MW are situated over a 3.45 hectares of roof space, generating enough energy to power to 1,200 houses over a year.
  • On average 25 Continental  and four Mulsanne are built per day
  • It takes 104 hours to build a Continental GT, 130 hours to build a Flying Spur, and 399 hours to build a Mulsanne from start to finish
  • 546 employees work on the Continental and Flying Spur production line
  • 144 employees work on the Mulsanne production line
  • The factory is the largest producer of the W12 engine globally, 66,537 have been built since the introduction of the Continental GT in 2003
  • Once a week an engine undergoes a full audit test – running the engine at speeds up to 6,000 revolutions per minute
  • Every car undergoes a 500-650 point checklist before final sign off, dependent on options
  • 20 cars per week undergo a full audit, which includes full function, road test (around 40 miles per test), and a full interior and exterior check
  • Every car is tested on a rolling road, which is equivalent to four miles
  • In 2012 Bentley test drivers racked up 14,000 miles driving cars before handing over to the customer (not including audit miles and Quality Assurance Centre miles)
  • Bentley’s “Crewe Genuine Parts” facility at Orion Park in Crewe holds over 60,000 parts, providing support for all cars built from1955 to present day
  • Orion Park has facilities to cut a key without an original to copy, for Bentleys dating to the early 1960s
  • More than 700 businesses supply 18,000 parts from 32 countries and six continents to Crewe - 82 suppliers are located within a 50 mile radius of the factory

BENTLEY - THE CRAFTSMANSHIP

  • The Bentley matrix grill originates from the golden era of Bentley racing in the 1920s, when it was fitted as a protective mesh stone guard
  • The headlights of the Mulsanne bear a three spoke design, which echoes the “tripod” reflector shield of a 1930s Bentley
  • Bentley’s winged B mascot was redesigned by Tim Potts in 2006, the original was designed by Charles Sykes and first used on 6½ Litre Bentleys in the late 1920’s
  • Bentley has had a styling studio on site since 1951
  • Bentley leather is sourced from Northern European bulls, the more temperate climate zones ensure there are fewer parasites and the leather is naturally blemish free
  • Offering 24 “standard” leather colours. customers may also select from a virtually unlimited palette of leather hides,
  • Of the 399 hours it takes to build the flagship Mulsanne from start to finish, 200 of these are dedicated to crafting the interior
  • The steering wheel of one Mulsanne takes one person 10 feet of thread, 5 hours and 620 stitches to complete
  • To contrast stitch the entire cabin of a Continental GT takes 25 hours
  • Each sheet of veneer is 0.6mm thick, and is stored in a humidor to ensure it remains pliable
  • There are 16 veneer options available, including 14 types of wood
  • 167 employees work in the Wood Shop, it takes four years to master every one of the 17 processes
  • There are 120 “standard” Bentley paint colours to choose from, however colour matching means the actual palate is effectively limitless
  • More unusual customer requests have included matching upholstery to a customer’s nail varnish, and matching paint to another’s food processor
  • The winged B radiator badge was designed by F. Gordon Crosby in 1920. The colour of the winged B badge has appeared in a variety of colours over the years. All 3 Litres up to No.355 had blue badges, then red appeared on Speed model 3 Litres, blue on 6½  Litres, green on Speed 6, and black on 4½ and 4¼ supercharged, then blue on 8 Litres and 4 Litres

BENTLEY - RECORDS AND AWARDS

  • Though best known for 6 victories at Le Mans - Bentley's first racing victory was at Brooklands in Surrey in 1921
  • Bentley first won at Le Mans in 1924, and from 1927 to 1930 they won each year
  • Bentley was the first non-French make to compete in the first Le Mans 24 hour race in 1923
  • Bentley boy Woolf Barnato remains the only driver to have won Le Mans every time he entered, in 1928, 1929 and 1930
  • Bentley’s success at Le Mans in 2003 remains the most recent outright British win at Le Mans. Completing 3,196 miles (5,146 km) over the course of the event, the two cars recorded an average speed of 133 mph (214 km/h)
  • In 2011 rally champion Juha Kankkunen achieved a new ice speed record of 205.48 mph (330.695 km/h) in a Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible, latterly known as the “Ice Speed Record” car
  • In 2003 the first generation Bentley Continental GT was named the most significant production car design at the NAIAS eyes on design awards, since then the car has won numerous awards including Grand Tourer of the Year award by Top Gear magazine,  and is twice winner of the ‘Classic Car of the Future’ award from Motor Klassik magazine
  • The redesigned reception and entrance area at Bentley Motors’ headquarters in Crewe was named  “Overall Winner” at the 2012 Society of British Interior Design Awards, as judged by a range of influential designers including Professor Jimmy Choo OBE
  • In 2012 the Bentley Continental GT Convertible received the prestigious Auto Trophy award for “Imported Convertiblesover 30,000 euros" as voted for by readers of “Auto Zeitung” magazine
  • W.O. Bentley’s own company car, a 1930 8 Litre, is still driven, in October 2012 it completed the seven-day long 2012 China Rally of International Classic Cars in Shanghai
  • Tim Birkin’s 4 ½ Litre Supercharged ‘Blower’ Bentley single seater set a new world best for a Bentley at Bonhams Goodwood auction, the legendary car set a £4.5 million auction record
  • The Mulsanne has also been widely recognised, in 2011 it was named Luxury Car of the Year by EVO Middle East, in addition to “Best of the Best” by Robb Report