Bentley exploring alternative materials to cater for vegan demand

Bentley looking into range of new interior materials, including protein leather, mushroom leather and jellyfish material

Bentley Mulsanne Mulliner interior

Bentley is working on alternate materials that will allow the British brand to sell to well-heeled vegan customers, the head of design has revealed.

The Crewe manufacturer is known for its luxurious interiors, which can feature up to 20 animal hides in their leather upholstery and trimming. Speaking at the Financial Times Future of the Car Summit, Bentley’s Director of Design Stefan Sielaff revealed that customer demand has persuaded the design team to investigate alternatives to the traditional materials. 

“You can’t sell an animal-containing product like a Bentley, with 20 leather hides, to someone with a vegan lifestyle,” Sielaff said. “We’ve been talking to these customers, in California especially, and they’re asking us what can we give them. We do a lot of custom-made and coach-built solutions, in conjunction with our colleagues at Mulliner, and therefore we want to satisfy these customers because they are the peak of a trend.

“We will shortly present a Bentley with a vegan interior; it’ll give you a luxury sensation but with a different way - protein leather, mushroom leather, jellyfish material.”

A Bentley spokesman declined to give an estimated arrival date for the new interior materials but admitted, “This is something the design and colour and trim guys are interrogating.”

Sielaff said his team are also investigating how electric powertrains will influence the future design language of Bentley. “We are working on exploring at the moment what will be the Bentley design language of the future, “ he said, “when we do this big step. It’s a nice philosophical discussion because we have certain elements in Bentley proportion - short front overhang, long rear overhang - and we are asking how much we can change these proportions, and whether it still be recognisible as a Bentley?”

Are you a vegan? Are you happy to see Bentley exploring different materials? Let us know below...

Recommended

Bentley records best ever sales in 2020
News

Bentley records best ever sales in 2020

Bentley weathers the storm of COVID-19 and economic disruption to set new sales record
5 Jan 2021
First Blower Bentley continuation model completed
Bentley Blower continuation - front studio
Bentley

First Blower Bentley continuation model completed

First new Bentley Blower for 90 years – and it’ll be used as a test mule for an upcoming production run of 12 vehicles
9 Dec 2020
Bentley to become electric-only car maker
Bentley

Bentley to become electric-only car maker

Bentley - the world’s largest producer of 12-cylinder engines - will ditch them all and switch to pure electric power only by the end of the decade
5 Nov 2020
Classic electric car conversions boom in popularity
Electric cars

Classic electric car conversions boom in popularity

Retrofitting electric powertrains to classic cars is becoming fashionable for the environmentally conscious and well-heeled
24 Jun 2020

Most Popular

Electric Nissan e-NV200 Winter Camper concept revealed
Nissan e-NV200 Winter Camper concept
News

Electric Nissan e-NV200 Winter Camper concept revealed

All-electric campervan features a built-in kitchen, a folding bed and a power pack that can be recharged using a roof-mounted solar panel
21 Jan 2021
BMW 5 Series vs Audi A6 vs Volvo S90
BMW 5 Series vs Audi A6 vs Volvo S90 - main
Car group tests

BMW 5 Series vs Audi A6 vs Volvo S90

Can plug-in hybrid power create a clear winner out of the BMW 5 Series, Audi A6 or Volvo S90
23 Jan 2021
Updated Abarth 595 range launched with fresh interior
Abarth 595 2021 - main
Abarth 500

Updated Abarth 595 range launched with fresh interior

Subtle styling tweaks and a more emissions-friendly engine range for revised Abarth 595
22 Jan 2021