The Bacalar is the most exclusive and bespoke Bentley of the modern era. Picture: SUPPLIED
The Bacalar is the most exclusive and bespoke Bentley of the modern era. Picture: SUPPLIED

Bentley has launched the rarest two-door Bentley of the modern era. Only 12 examples of the Mulliner Bacalar will be built — all are already spoken for — and it spearheads a return to coachbuilding by the luxury brand’s Mulliner division, which traces its roots back to the 1500s when the company’s original focus was customising luxurious, horse-drawn carriages.

Bentley calls this grand tourer the ultimate expression of two-seat, open-air luxury. Each model will be handcrafted in Bentley Mulliner’s workshop in Crewe, according to the individual customer’s personal tastes.

The car shares no body panel with any other Bentley. It only shares one exterior component with the  Continental GT — the door handle, simply because it contains the keyless entry system.

It is named after Laguna Bacalar in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, a lake renowned for its natural beauty and continues Bentley’s strategy of naming cars after remarkable landmarks started with Bentayga in 2015.

Each Bacalar will be unique, the result of direct interaction between the Bentley Mulliner design team and the individual customer. It does, though, draw on design cues from the EXP 100 GT concept car that marked the company’s centenary in 2019.

The Bacalar marks a return to bespoke coachbuilding for Bentley Mulliner – the oldest coachbuilding company in the world. Picture: SUPPLIED
The Bacalar marks a return to bespoke coachbuilding for Bentley Mulliner – the oldest coachbuilding company in the world. Picture: SUPPLIED

Sustainable, ethically sourced materials previewed in the EXP 100 GT concept car last year have become reality in the Bacalar. These include paint containing ash from rice husks, which provides a sustainable way of delivering a rich metallic finish, and riverwood sourced from naturally fallen trees that have been preserved for 5,000 years in peat bogs in East Anglia, England.

The Bacalar features an enhanced version of Bentley’s 6.0l, W12 TSI petrol turbo engine, producing outputs of 507kW and 900Nm.

The power is laid down through an active all-wheel-drive system that varies the torque split between front and rear wheels, and it rides on an air suspension system that delivers waftability or cornering prowess on demand.

The Bacalar represents a return to the early years of Bentley, allowing owners to help shape the car of their dreams. Customers are able to work closely with a team of specialist designers to enhance their vehicle with a selection of unique materials and specially curated options.

The Bacalar will be the first — but other new bespoke Bentleys will follow as part of the Bentley Mulliner Coachbuilt portfolio.