If homeowners cannot drive their Bacalar within the rain, that is a small matter. You will be assured, individuals who can afford to purchase this $2 million automobile produce other ones they’ll get moist.
The lack of a roof gave Bentley designers a type of freedom they not often get when having to determine the place to cover a folded prime and put ugly latching mechanisms.
“When you don’t have a roof, you can make the flow of the cabin go into the contour of the exterior. So this car is very much about the design language,” mentioned Bentley spokesman Tim Hannig, who accompanied me on the drive. “And we wanted to create something of extraordinary beauty. Therefore, no roof.”
Only a dozen Bacalars shall be constructed. With so few being made, and at that type of a worth, the Bacalar is, primarily, a privately owned idea automobile. Although, in contrast to most idea automobiles, it is highway authorized.
No one might give an actual worth for the Bacalar that I used to be driving as a result of it was actually, priceless. “Car Zero,” as was relatively garishly lettered on the aspect, is the prototype Bacalar, and Bentley has no plans to promote it. It had been painted white for testing so any potential cracks or flaws within the physique would present extra simply, and had solely not too long ago been repainted a deep ocean inexperienced.
The all-wheel-drive Bacalar has a turbocharged 650-horsepower 12-cylinder engine, but it surely is not meant to be a street-shredding high-performance sports activities automobile. Customers who need that type of factor can store at Bentley’s sister-brand Lamborghini. (Both are owned by the Volkswagen Group.)
With its easy journey, comfy seats and ample trunk area, the Bacalar is designed to be the type of automobile one may drive each day, although one most likely will not.
Hannig instructed me in regards to the automobile as he drove us out to a roadside overlook by the Pacific Ocean. Fortunately, whereas heavy clouds remained, the rain had stopped. And, for good measure, he pressed the gasoline pedal arduous a number of occasions, eliciting brutal acceleration and a sonorous rumble from the massive engine.
While I waited for my likelihood to drive, I familiarized myself with the Bacalar’s distinctive inside. The wooden trim comes from a tree that fell 5,000 years in the past right into a wetland and was preserved there in a course of that additionally stained it practically black. Bentley left the colour alone. The analog clock within the heart of the dashboard is gentle blue, the hue of Lake Bacalar in Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. Its water is well-known for its shimmering colour.
The Bacalar has a three-sided rotating panel within the dashboard, a function additionally obtainable in different Bentley fashions, together with the Continental GT. One aspect is “blank,” wanting like the remainder of the dashboard. But on the press of a button, the panel can flip round to point out three old style dials, together with a compass. Flip the panel once more and it exhibits a digital show display screen of the type practically each automobile has today. There you’ll be able to see a navigation map, choose a track to play and do all the types of issues drivers do with screens.
About the one different inside piece the Bacalar shares with the Bentley Continental GT is a panel of switches close to the gear selector. It’s largely due to that panel that the Bacalar, open to the world because it is, has air-con. According to Hannig, it simply appeared higher to maintain the futile function than to revamp the swap panel and take away the buttons.
The emphasis on design additionally means the Bacalar does not have a backup digital camera, although there is a display screen within the dashboard. Adding that function would require a digital camera lens that, designers felt, would put an ugly glass pimple on the automobile’s fantastically designed rear finish. Fortunately, due to its four-wheel steering, the Bacalar was simply in a position to make a U-turn so I might pull out of the overlook’s small car parking zone.
The Bacalar is not instantly eye-catching from the surface. To most individuals, it could most likely register as “a nice Bentley.” Look only a second longer and also you discover the way in which the headlights are stretched across the entrance corners. You may also discover the way in which the hood scoops or the general proportions of the automobile. The Bacalar is low and muscular, with bulges rising behind every seat. As it drives previous, you’d positively discover that the again finish splits into layers like a flower bud opening up.
From the driving force’s seat, the Bacalar appears like a quintessential Bentley. Strong and fast, however comfy. The steering has a pleasant really feel and suggestions to it and the engine gives ample and good sounding energy.
But Bacalar prospects aren’t paying for efficiency. They’re paying for the distinctive design of the automobile, which supplies them one thing they’ll name all their very own. All 12 Bacalar manufacturing automobiles have now been designed to every buyer’s specific tastes, Hannig instructed me.
“Every car has its absolute own personality,” he mentioned.
Even with its hefty worth, a automobile like this might maintain its worth fairly nicely as a consequence of its excessive rarity, mentioned Donald Osborne, chief govt of Audrain LLC and a collector and automobile appraiser. The undeniable fact that it has no roof in any respect might restrict its attraction for some, although, he mentioned.
There are different automobiles on which one might spend this type of cash and get absurd ranges of pace and energy that the overwhelming majority of homeowners won’t ever come near with the ability to get pleasure from. The Bacalar simply gives its magnificence and its uniqueness. It is additionally fairly good to drive on a pleasing day by the ocean. It could also be a bit impractical, but it surely’s good when a really costly automobile gives such accessible pleasures.