Bentley starts new Launch & Engineering Centre

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Bentley Motors has initiated a crucial phase in its mission to become the leading sustainable luxury automotive manufacturer globally. The company recently held a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Launch Quality Centre and Engineering Technical Centre at its headquarters in Crewe, England. This state-of-the-art facility is vital for Bentley’s preparations towards the production of future Battery-Powered Electric Vehicles (BEVs) and aims to set new standards in digital, flexible, and high-value manufacturing operations.

As a first step, the new buildings will feature a replica BEV assembly line in preparation for Bentley’s first BEV introduction in 2026. The centre will also house a software integration centre, prototype workshop, metrology testing, and a dedicated section for future materials development. In honour of this occasion, Peter Bosch, Member of the Board for Manufacturing and Dr. Matthias Rabe, Member of the Board for R&D, signed a key structural column – one of 101 such columns in the building. The Launch Quality Centre will occupy two floors, each covering 4,000 square metres, while the Engineering Technical Centre will be across two floors, covering a total of 13,000 square metres. The centre is part of Bentley’s £2.5 billion, ten-year investment program in future products and Pyms Lane factory in Crewe, where all Bentley models are handcrafted.

Bentley aims to become a ‘Dream Factory’ by reinventing its entire product range to support an electrified future while achieving carbon-neutral status by 2030, which is part of the company’s Beyond100 strategy. This new digital, zero environmental impact, flexible, and high-value manufacturing facility will play a crucial role in achieving this goal by adopting a go-to-zero approach to the environmental impacts of manufacturing and leading the luxury car industry in next-generation digital applications.

The new Launch Quality Centre will include an in-house Metrology team responsible for measuring every part of a Bentley to the highest precision standards. The team’s role is fundamental to the quality, performance, and longevity of every luxury car that comes off the production line. The Engineering Technical Centre will house a prototype workshop for future models, materials development, and a software integration centre. A structured, comprehensive application of skills in training, testing, and launch preparation for all software and electrical, digital high-voltage systems will ensure the centre’s harmonious integration.

The new facility will relocate all departments from their current locations in the A1 building, the oldest existing building at the Pyms Lane site, which will be transformed into BEV assembly in time for production to begin in 2026. Approximately 300 Bentley colleagues will work at the Launch Quality Centre and Engineering Technical Centre, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2023.

The creation of a ‘Dream Factory’ is a key part of Bentley’s forward-thinking Beyond100 strategy, which includes the Five-in-Five plan. This ambitious plan commits the British brand to launching a new electric model each year before 2030. Peter Bosch, Member of the Board for Manufacturing, expressed that the new Launch Quality Centre and Engineering Technical Centre is another significant milestone on Bentley’s journey towards an electrified, carbon-neutral future. The company is taking advantage of the current digital revolution in the automotive industry and aiming to achieve a benchmark position in next-generation, high-value manufacturing that supports the evolving Dream Factory and re-emphasizes its commitment to both the Beyond100 strategy and the company’s long-term future at the site.

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