Wednesday 19 March 2014

Bentley to be sole W12 engine source

Bentley Motors is to become the centre of excellence for the Volkswagen Group for all W12 engine production from the end of 2014 onwards.

Bentley has thus reinforced its position as the world’s largest producer of 12 cylinder engines. With this decision, Bentley will export engines for the first time in its history, creating around 100 jobs across the business.

Dr. Wolfgang Schreiber, chairman and chief executive of Bentley Motors, said: “This is an important step, not just for Bentley but also for the UK manufacturing sector. This W12 centre of excellence is recognition of the long standing engine manufacturing expertise we have that has resulted in performance improvements across the model ranges over recent years. The production of this advanced engine and its future generations will bring new technologies and skills to Crewe.”

The W12 engine is an advanced 12-cylinder high performance engine in a unique ‘W’ configuration. The engine offers high levels of power and torque. Bentley expects to produce up to 9,000 engines a year at peak times. 

The Alusil W12 blocks are cast by Kolbenschmidt Aluminium Technologie using the low pressure die casting technique. 

In the Bentley Continental GT Speed Convertible the 6-litre W12 engine develops 625bhp (467kW) and 825Nm (605lbft) torque. Bentley uses two other engines: the 4-litre V8 in the New Flying spur V8 of 500bhp (373kW) and 660Nm (486lbft) torque and the Twin-turbo 6.75-litre V8 in the Mulsanne giving 505bhp (377kW) and 1,020Nm (752lbft) torque. In the New Continental GTV8 Convertible the V8 engine gives 521bhp (389kW) and 680Nm (502lbft) torque.

Meanwhile, Bentley Motors has announced a significant growth in profit and turnover, its strongest ever performance, as the company outlined its financial results for the year ending 31 December 2013.

Operating profit improved to a record £139.7 (€167.7) million, up 66.9 per cent on the 2012 figure of £83.7 (€100.5) million.

Turnover has grown by 15.5 per cent to £1.40 (€1.68) billion, the highest in Bentley’s history. Profit margin increased from seven per cent to 10 per cent.

Bentley’s exports contributed to 88 per cent of total turnover, with a total export value of £1.23 (€1.48) billion.

This success has continued into 2014, with global deliveries to customers growing by 13 per cent to 1,408 cars by the end of February.

“The luxury car market is not static,” claimed Schreiber. “We will continue to make sure that Bentley will meet the changing needs of our discerning customers. Just two weeks ago we introduced the new Continental GT Speed and the new V8 Flying Spur. In 2016 we will offer the first SUV (below) in the luxury sector and one year later we will bring plug-in-hybrid technology into the luxury market. We are on the back of a record year and given the start we have made to 2014, we are confident that Bentley will have another good year, with strong growth.”

Bentley delivered more cars than ever before in 2013, 10,120 cars, a global growth of 19 per cent over the 2012 figure of 8,510 cars.

The US remains Bentley’s largest market, with a share of 31 per cent of global deliveries, followed by China with 22 per cent, with Europe accounting for 15 per cent.

Bentley’s home market, the UK, also performed extremely well, taking 14 per cent of global deliveries, while the increasingly important Middle East region delivered 12 per cent of the 10,120 cars.

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