The world’s in a spot of bother right now. War, political turmoil, financial turmoil, global warming, and not to mention the very sad passing of the lovely Bernard Cribbins yesterday. But there is at least one fillip to this lousiness: Bentley has just posted its latest results. And for the first half of 2022, all’s been bright and breezy.
Operating profits we up 124 per cent compared with the same period last year, at a dizzying €398 million. That's against €389 million for the whole of 2021, which was already logged in the ledger as a bumper year.
That €398 million was on a turnover of €1.707 billion, which was another sizeable step up from the €1.324 billion it recorded in the first half of last year. The increase was partly the result of higher revenue per car, which is now at €213,000 instead of €186,000. Bentley says this is down to its push on personalisation programmes. It also states that no other luxury automotive brand sells more cars than it does in the €200,000 to €250,000 range. Its return on sales was also around 10 per cent higher than this this time last year, at 23.3 per cent – another record.
Guess what its best-selling model was? Yep, that’s right, the SUV. It was bound to be really. The Bentayga accounted for 40 per cent of total sales, followed by the Continental GT (both body styles), with the Flying Spur hitting 27 per cent. Funnily enough, we’ve only just tested one of those – the latest Flying Spur Hybrid that's broadened the model's appeal.
Another no-brainer is that the Americas were its strongest market, but with just a one per cent growth since last year. And China was down a quarter, thanks to more Covid lockdowns, which makes the company’s record sales even more impressive. The Middle East was also suppressed at nine per cent below last year, with the growth being driven by the UK (up 44 per cent), Europe (up 33 per cent) and Asia Pacific (up 18 per cent). Overall, sales were up three per cent to 7,398.
Chairman and CEO of Bentley Motors, Adrian Hallmark, said, “Despite the continued global economic instability, it is promising to see Bentley is showing financial consistency as we reinvent the company in line with our Beyond100 strategy and form a basis to withstand further external shocks. In particular, a significant increase in demand and capitalisation of our Mulliner personalisation programme has driven record return on sales, and continued global interest in the freshest model line in the luxury sector has resulted in record high revenues.”
He also expressed warm words for the staff, saying, “I would like to thank our hard-working colleagues for their continued efforts, as Bentley continues its ground-breaking transformation towards an electrified future, financial independence and to be the leader in sustainable luxury mobility.”
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