As the average age of Bentley clients continues to fall, the choice provided to the customer is becoming increasingly diverse and modern. Nowhere is this more evident than the newly expanded suite of veneer options available to the customer when they choose their interior, now providing more than 5,000 possible combinations involving painted veneers, open pore wood, technical finishes and even stone.
Since the very first Bentley in 1921, the finest Grand Tourers in the world have been sold with wooden dashboards. In recent years, the shaping and application of ethically sourced, sustainable wood veneer to Bentley interiors has been recognised as industry-leading – the skills of the craftspeople in Bentley’s Wood Shop are identical to those of the finest cabinet makers. Shaping and polishing wood veneer to tolerances measured in tenths of a millimetre bring an intricate, beautiful element of natural luxury to the cabin.
The Continental GT, for example, is available with seven different wood species – either as a single finish, or paired with Grand Black as a dual finish. Additionally, through Bentley Mulliner’s Extended Veneer option, any two species of wood can be combined in a dual finish.
For those customers wanting to move away from traditional lacquered wood veneer, Bentley now offers the luxury of choice through a number of veneer families and Mulliner Personal Commissioning options.
Stone Veneers – the Ultimate Contrast
Using state of the art technology, Bentley Mulliner can take stone formed over 200 million years ago and create veneers just 0.1mm thick, making them extremely light in weight. They feature a natural ‘open pore’ finish, with a stone texture you can feel as well as see.
Slate and quartzite stone is sustainably sourced from hand-selected quarries in Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh, India – a nation with an ancient and rich culture of stone masonry. The sections of stone are split from larger pieces and cured using a bespoke resin. Finally, they are shaped and hand finished by Bentley’s world-renowned Mulliner coachbuilding team at the company’s headquarters in Crewe, England.
Four different stone colours are available, to complement a range of interiors: Autumn White, Copper, Galaxy or Terra Red.
Stone, Piano painted and open pore veneers are all available as single finishes, or as a dual finish in combination with gloss Grand Black veneer above or below – expanding the options to the customer even further.
Piano Painted Veneers – Prioritising Colour
Those customers wishing to add a splash of colour to their veneers are able to select Piano painted veneers by Bentley Mulliner, offering an ultra-modern look that perfectly complements the wide range of interior hide options available. The same quality of veneer, carefully selected by Bentley’s master craftspeople, is used as when lacquered wood options are chosen, to ensure the same flawless surface finish. The veneer is then hand sanded before it is lacquered, then paint is carefully applied to ensure a perfect finish. After painting, the veneer receives a final polish with lamb’s wool to achieve a mirror like finish.
Bentley Mulliner can paint match to any of Bentley’s 88 different exterior shades, or to a set of eight interior hide colours – Beluga, Burnt Oak, Cricket Ball, Cumbrian Green, Damson, Imperial Blue, Linen or Porpoise.
Open-Pore Veneers – for Sustainability and Texture
For those wanting to avoid the gloss of full lacquer, Mulliner provides the option of using open-pore veneer, which is finished with an ultra-thin matt lacquer solely for protection. Liquid Amber, Dark Burr Walnut and Tamo Ash veneers are all available in an open-pore finish.
Selected from only the very best, most figured stock available, open-pore veneer is painted with just three ultra-thin layers of lacquer, together totalling only 0.1 mm in thickness. By comparison, Bentley’s High Gloss lacquer coating is 0.5 mm thick and has a glossy, smooth finish. Each layer is applied by hand and sanded between applications, ensuring the lacquer sticks to the natural grooves of the wood. The resulting finish is wax-like and perfectly highlights the authentic, natural colour and texture of the wood species.
This delicate technique ensures Bentley customers can actually feel the texture of the wood. The variation in colour and grain of different cuts of open-pore veneer mean that each is also slightly different – offering a truly unique Bentley interior.
Technical Finishes – for Maximum Sporting Aesthetic
Firstly, customers may choose a technical finish. High-gloss carbon fibre replaces the veneer panels to add a contemporary, technical and sporty feel to the interior. An optic resin process enhances the 3D appearance of the carbon fibre weave to maximum effect, providing a seamless geometric surface flowing around the cockpit from one door to the other
Unique to the new Bentayga, a stunning dark tint diamond brushed aluminium finish trim is available as an option in a Bentley for the first time. Evoking the Bentley matrix grille design, this exquisite finish is produced via an intricate process of brushing the aluminium precisely from multiple directions, to achieve a contemporary three-dimensional effect.