Mega rich opting for pink interiors drive up Bentley prices by £43,000

Bentley paris hilton pink interior - Shutterstock
Bentley paris hilton pink interior - Shutterstock

Demand for pink and orange interiors, hand stitched seats and stone trims has helped increase the average cost of a Bentley by €50,000 (£43,000).

The British car maker now charges €220,000 on average per vehicle compared to  €170,000 before the pandemic thanks to the super-rich splurging their coronavirus savings on custom interiors.

Bentley chief executive Adrian Hallmark said the days of dealers driving Bentley designs and opting for "cars for funerals" dominated by black and grey paint jobs were over.

Customers are increasingly opting to design their cars themselves, either by choosing from millions of trim, paint and other options, or through Bentley’s highest-end Mulliner option.

The service means one-off commissions can be designed from scratch, for a price which may stretch into the millions.

Richer wood trims, bespoke seat designs and other extras can quickly add €100,000 to the cost of a Bentayga SUV, Continental GT or Flying Spur.

“The dealer just wanted a simple spec, a dark colour on the outside, light colour on the inside and a lowish spec so they can sell it to anybody,” he said. “Now the process is customer-led leading to bolder demands from clients who want something unique and are also not concerned about resale value.”

Buyers can choose from trims of eucalyptus, walnut and even 5,000-year-old wood salvaged from East Anglian bogs and rivers, as well as more exotic materials such as stone.

Seats in magenta, blue and canary yellow are more common, as well as tweed trims and demand for plant-based materials rather than leather.

More expensive options include seats which detect tiredness and chill, and heat and massage their occupants accordingly.

True Bentley obsessives can even buy a £1.5m reproduction of the 1920s Bentley Blower racing car, built by painstakingly tearing down an original, 3D scanning its components and hand building them to resemble mint condition variants of the originals, which now fetch £20m.

The brand has become popular with celebrities including Kim Kardashian, Elton John and England manager Gareth Southgate.

It also custom built the state limousine ordered for the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.

Bentley is set to cut production slightly from this year’s total of about 15,000, which had the Volkswagen-owned brand, based in Crewe, running its factory at capacity.

Mr Hallmark said Bentley’s once-booming China orders are back to pre-Covid levels after a flurry of pent-up orders this year as rich Chinese buyers snapped up cars in between lockdowns.

“It's not a disaster. But if you look at the rest of the world, the US, UK, Europe, they are 20pc plus up on the previous year.”

“We're optimistic for 2023 at the moment, but we are alert, awake, whatever we need to do to get through we will,” he added.

Bentley posted record profits for the first nine months of the year of €575m, up by 109pc over the same period last year.