Mulliner, the oldest coachbuilding company in the world, will give us a glimpse into their old-world tailor-made craft with the launch of the Bentley Bacalar. The storied builder, whose history goes back as far as the 1500s, plans to build only a dozen examples of the $2 million two-seater. Despite the price-tag, they have all been sold already. The luxury performance car is based on the Continental GT. However, aside from the door handles, it does not share any exterior panels or parts with its British sibling. Instead, the design of the car is inspired by Bentley’s EXP 100 GT. The open-air design is also a permanent fixture, as the Bacalar does not come with a retractable roof.
The ultra-exclusive grand tourer uses Bentley’s 6.0-liter twin-turbo W-12. That engine produces a mighty 650 horsepower and 667 lb-ft of torque in this particular model. An 8-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission sends power to its all-wheel drive system. Bentley claims that the car can accelerate to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and reach over 200 mph. Considering the fact that the less powerful and 220 pound heavier Continental GT W-12 is capable of those performance figures, we believe those estimates are highly conservative.
The rear track of the Bentley Bacalar is 0.79 inches wider than that of the Continental GT, giving it a more aggressive stance. Large 22-inch wheels further accentuates its posture and nicely fills in its wheel wells. Carbon fiber is the chosen material for its front fenders and doors. Aluminum makes up the rear deck of the car. Customers will be able to customize their Bacalar through choices of exterior treatments and design themes.
The exclusive handcrafted design is on full display in the cabin, as rare and high-end materials line the interior. Trim made from 5,000-year-old Riverwood recovered from an eastern England coastal plain trim surrounds the dashboard. Soft wool cloth covers the seat inserts, seat backs and side of the head restraints. The high-end material also blankets the side of the center console, lower instrument panel and doors. The quilted leather seats come together with precisely 148,199 individual stitches. Bentley’s unique and ingenious Rotating Display integrates a revolving center panel in the Bacalar’s dashboard. The panel rotates to expose either the digital display, a veneered panel with a compass, temperature gauge and chronograph timer or a veneer-only panel at any given time.
While the Bacalar will be limited to only 12 bespoke cars, the grand tourer is only the start to Mulliner’s new custom-car endeavor. Bentley’s special division plans on producing more cars within their Coachbuilt, Classic and Collections portfolios.