More Ultra-lux SUVs From Bentley? Don't Hold Your Breath
It should come as no surprise to anyone that Bentley is not Chevrolet. The British luxury automaker’s executive suite does not spend its time searching for the thinnest sliver of white space in the brand’s lineup, eager to find a home for a new utility model.
Thus, the Bentayga — an SUV boasting questionable styling that debuted in 2016 — will continue on as the brand’s sole utility vehicle, its CEO says. For now, at least, Bentley has no interest in fleshing out its go-anywhere-in-style lineup.
Speaking to Down Under publication Car Sales, Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark claims the Bentayga’s lofty sales and potential for additional variants makes talk of a new SUV — perhaps a smaller, cheaper offering — a pointless exercise.
“Direct answer? We are not looking at that,” Hallmark said at the marque’s 100th birthday bash in Crewe, England. “Is there an imminent, or very near, [Bentayga] coupe? No.”
Having said that, Hallmark admitted that the future could bring new models; however, no one’s working on it at the moment.
“Are we looking at it right now? No,” the CEO said. “Could we imagine doing different twists on SUVs in the future? Yes.”
Despite its soaring price (maybe because of it) and non pin-up styling, the Bentayga has been a huge hit for the reserved luxury brand. It’s the company’s best-selling model to date, Hallmark said, with Bentayga sales making up nearly half of Bentley’s volume.
With such a money maker on board, development dollars will flow to the breadwinner before Bentley looks in another direction. We’ve already seen the introduction of the potent Bentayga Speed, and a plug-in hybrid variant arrives on these shores later this year. There’s still untapped potential in the brand’s lone SUV, Hallmark said.
“We’ll improve it through technology. We haven’t even scratched the surface of its potential,” he said, adding that the brand’s recent profitability didn’t “happen by luck.”
[Images: Volkswagen Group]
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"adding that the brand’s recent profitability didn’t “happen by luck."” How recent is recent? Last month? This Hallmark fellow is supposed to be CEO but seems out of the loop based on that remark. Bentley has been losing money badly for several years. There have been several business articles on the matter recently, but without digging deep to find one because I couldn't care less about Bentley, here's an article from Jan 2019: https://www.autoblog.com/2019/01/09/bentley-shareholders-demand-profit/ $19K loss per vehicle. There won't be any super luxe vehicle from Bentley for some time for obvious reasons.
I guess Bentley would rather allocate more funding and engineering work toward the Mulsanne replacement. The current Mulsanne is getting longer and longer in the tooth after ten years in production with minor cosmetic upgrades and small performance addition (Mulsanne Speed).