With exclusive models such as Bentley’s new Continental GT, Volkswagen is cementing its leadership in the market for first-class premium vehicles.
As part of Volkswagen, the brands Bentley, Lamborghini, Bugatti, Ducati and Porsche stand for high-performance, exclusive and highly individualized vehicles of the highest class. Their quality feature: the use of premium materials from around the world.
With the third generation of the new Continental GT1, currently Bentley in particular sparkles in the high-class segment of the Volkswagen Group. For the new 22-inch alloy wheels, the “Super Premium”-brand spares no effort and obtains the flow-formed wheels directly from Japan. The extra hand-polished finish on site highlights the accentuated areas of the wheels more strikingly than would be possible with traditional manufacturing methods.
For the interior of each model, Bentley uses German-sourced leather in turn. Bonded to form a 2.8-kilometer long strand, this smooth leather hide forms the elegant ambiance of the opulent interior while providing the unsurpassed comfort in every Continental GT.
The aesthetics and elegance of the interior are likewise burnished by the suede-like, synthetic microfiber from Italy known as Alcantara. Used primarily in the fashion and furniture industries, this somewhat lighter material lends the interior of the new Continental GT a soft and pliable suppleness.
For the decorative wood paneling in its latest Bentley model, Volkswagen taps a very rare material. Looking for exclusive products, the brand discovered the acacia koa, a tree that grows only in Hawaii and which, to date, has primarily been used to make surfboards and musical instruments such as the guitar and the ukulele. Finished to a wood veneer, the material’s warm tone and striped pattern elegantly enhances the interior of the Continental GT.
Technologically, Bentley trusts the expertise of Swiss timepiece precision. As an embodiment of robustness, reliability and performance, the modern display clock also incorporates the characteristic Bentley diamond pattern and wing emblem.
Worldwide network for exceptional vehicles
Bentley is by no means the only brand of the Volkswagen Group that features exclusive products from around the world. Lamborghini, Bugatti, Porsche and Ducati also draw their global resources for extraordinary vehicles from a worldwide network of suppliers.
Lamborghini also makes use of the Italian Alcantara as a supple material for the interior and steering wheel trim on its models. Furthermore, the brand uses lightweight, high-strength carbon fibers, of which 10 percent is sourced from Italy and 90 percent from Japan. For the Lamborghini, these fibers are used both for load-bearing elements (monocoque in the Aventador2, carbon-aluminum hybrid chassis in the Huracán3) and body components. Carbon fiber is also used as a decorative element in both the interior and exterior.
Bugatti also proves that the use of robust carbon fibers in the Volkswagen Group is becoming increasingly important. For the monocoque chassis in its super sports cars4, Bugatti also sources its carbon fiber material from Japan. The fibers of the mats are woven in Germany and Italy. The mats are then impregnated with resin in Italy. Bugatti uses titanium for the exhaust systems, which is supplied via Japan and installed in Germany. The top coat paints and colors for the Bugatti cars also come from standard mixing benches in Germany.
But also the motorcycle manufacturer Ducati resorts to Volkswagen Group’s large supplier network. This brand obtains the exclusive materials for its fast two-wheelers from countries such as Italy, Austria, Slovenia, South Africa, Thailand and the USA. For example, Bugatti uses carbon fiber and titanium from Slovenia for the exhaust kit and fenders on its Panigale V4 Special5 model as well as magnesium from Italy in the wheels, hood and frame. For the Panigale 1299 Superleggera6, carbon fiber from Thailand, South Africa, Germany and Italy are used in the frame, the swingarm, the fairing and the wheels.
At the sports car manufacturer Porsche, the complex network of suppliers of high-quality materials is perhaps best explained using the example of leather. The brand works together with a German leather supplier for the leather on the dashboard of the legendary Porsche 9117 (black). The supplier delivers finished leather from bulls from southern Germany directly to the in-house saddlery of Porsche in Zuffenhausen. Those who prefer luxurious club leather interiors (leather with “cloud printing”) will find what they’re looking for in the Porsche Cayenne8.
High-quality materials will continue to play an important role at Volkswagen Group in the future as well. Above all, carbon, extremely light and at the same time robust, is considered one of the materials from which the future of (electric) mobility is made.
- 1Bentley Continental GT: fuel consumption combined: 12.2 l/100km; CO₂ emissions: 278g/km. Efficiency Class D-G.
- 2Bugatti Divo: fuel consumption combined: 22.5 l/100km; CO₂ emissions: 516 g/km. Efficiency Class G.
- 3Lamborghini Aventador SVJ: Combined fuel consumption: 19.6 l/100 km; CO₂ emissions: 452 g/km. Efficiency Class G.
- 4Lamborghini Huràcan: Combined fuel consumption: 14.8 l/100km; CO₂ emissions: 342 g/km. Efficiency Class G.
- 5Ducati Panigale V4 Speciale: Combined fuel consumption: 6.9l/100km; CO₂ emissions: 165g/km.
- 6Ducati 1299 Superleggera: Combined fuel consumption: 5.3 l/100 km; CO₂ emissions: 124 g/km.
- 7Porsche 911 Turbo S: Combined fuel consumption: 9.1 l/100 km; CO₂ emissions: 212 g/km. Efficiency Class D-G.
- 8Porsche Cayenne Turbo: Combined fuel consumption: 11.9 - 11.7 l/100 km; CO₂ emissions: 272 - 267 g/km. Efficiency Class D-G.