Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 17 July 2019

New Bentley pays tribute to the Arabian Gulf's history of pearl-diving

The Bentayga Mulliner Pearl of the Gulf references the region's seafaring heritage

For the latest iteration of its coveted Bentayga SUV, Bentley drew inspiration from the pearl diving traditions of the Arabian Gulf. The region’s rich pearling heritage has been referenced many times before – but here it is elevated to the very highest levels of automotive design.

The Bentayga Mulliner Pearl of the Gulf is one of the rarest cars Bentley has ever created; only five of the pearl-themed, W12-powered luxury SUVs will be made by the brand’s craftspeople in Crewe, England. Bentley’s Mulliner division is tasked with personal commissions and limited editions, and is responsible for creating truly special cars.

In the Bentayga Mulliner Pearl of the Gulf, the team opted for a dark fiddleback eucalyptus dashboard trim set with a marquetry dhow scene – three boats taking to the seas, their sails picked out in mother-of-pearl, with a desertscape in the background.

Bentley's Bentayga Pearl of the Gulf has taken cues from the region's cultural heritage. Courtesy Bentley
Bentley's Bentayga Pearl of the Gulf has taken cues from the region's cultural heritage. Courtesy Bentley

Taking pride of place in the centre of the dashboard is a Breitling mother-of-pearl clock. The two brands – titans in their industries – have a long-standing partnership that has also yielded the Breitling for Bentley family of chronograph watches.

The cabin of the Pearl of the Gulf is made from high-quality leather in Bentley’s “Linen” and “Brunel” – shades that reference the natural hues of the pearl and its shell. Contrast stitching is used for the quilted seats and door inserts, while gold-thread embroidery further enhances the interior of this premium vehicle. The car’s rarity is spelled out on the leather seats and door sills, where the phrase “1 of 5” is highlighted for all to see. Lambswool rugs lie underfoot.

A highlight of the interior – particularly for those who might need to store actual jewels – is a secure storage unit located within the cabin. Controlled by fingerprint sensor technology and crafted from high-pressure, die-cast aluminium, Bentley has described it as “the ideal place to stow valuables while at the beach or utilising valet parking services”.

The exterior of the car, which sits on 22-inch Paragon wheels, is available in three Mulliner colour finishes: Ghost White Pearlescent, Porcelain, or a combination of the two. It is a highly fitting ode to an age-old tradition.

Updated: April 9, 2019 03:44 PM

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