The Bacalar is based on a highly modified version of their Continental GT Convertible platform, though the only components it shares with that grand touring drop-top are its door handles. Instead of having a retractable roof, the Bacalar is a two-seat “barchetta” a classic style of open-top vehicle (barchetta means little boat in Italian) typically built without a roof. Named for a spectacular lake in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, the Bacalar follows Bentley’s new nomenclatural convention of providing their vehicles with monikers that honor the most unique places on earth.
The Bacalar celebrates the 101-year-old British brand’s return to traditional coach-building, the process of creating a custom or “bespoke” body-type for exclusive clients. This work will be handled through its subsidiary, Mulliner, the oldest such firm in the world, which was founded in the 16th century to create carriages for the British aristocracy. This means that every aspect of the vehicle is open to a customer’s individual specifications, from unique paints and leathers to selection of materials for trim and finishing.
Of course, each of Bacalar will also feature high-quality “standard” equipment. First and foremost, this includes muscular and wide-eyed styling derived from the brand’s centenary-celebrating EXP 100 GT show-car. It also includes such distinctly British offerings such as deep-pile Wilton wool carpets on the floors and special woolen textiles on the seat inserts, and a custom set of (Italian-made) Schedoni luggage that stacks perfectly into the compartment behind the two seats. As is de rigueur in today’s ultra-luxury market, it also features such virtuous signifiers of “sustainability” as a paint finish made with rice husks and the use of long-felled timber—5000-year-old river wood—for its fine veneers.
Of course, the Bacalanr also comes equipped with a gas-chugging 650 hp 12-cylinder engine, which should be capable of propelling it to speeds approaching or surpassing 200 mph. For the fortunate dozen customers, globally, who have been granted the privilege of paying $2 million ((£1.5 million) to own such a vehicle, that should provide sufficient wind in their hair.