You can currently buy a Bentley Bentayga Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV), with the Bentley Flying Spur PHEV being released in 2022, and although the company expects that 20 per cent of sales this year will come from hybrid cars, Bentley’s model line-up is currently a long way from the efficiency and low emissions of electric powertrains.
Bentley says that its first EV will be developed and built in the UK. It also states that its subsequent four EVs will all be designed and developed in Crewe – but no commitment is mentioned to manufacturing them in the UK.
And it won’t just be the cars that will be catapulted into a green future – Bentley’s factory, which has a history that includes being a manufacturing site in World War 2, will be transformed into a state of the art ‘Dream Factory’, with a focus on digital processes, zero environmental impact and high-value manufacturing.
The company has committed to investing £2.5 billion in sustainability over the next ten years. Currently there is a workforce of 4,000 at the Crewe site.
Bentley’s announcement forms part of the company’s Beyond100 strategy – the plan launched in 2020 that will ensure Bentley is exclusively electric and end-to-end carbon neutral by 2030. As well as making environment improvements over recent years such as a reduction in the use of water and the installation of 30,000 solar panels producing energy for the factory, another 10,000 solar panels will be fitted over the next two years.
Bentley’s partners are also being encouraged to support the company’s goal of being end-to-end carbon neutral by 2030, with suppliers expected to meet minimum sustainability standards. This will extend to Bentley’s global retailer network, each aiming for carbon neutrality by 2025 or even sooner.