The W12 engine for the first customer Bentley Mulliner Bacalar has completed assembly and production testing at the company's centre of excellence for W12 engines.
The 6.0-litre, W12 TSI engine produces 659 PS (650 bhp) and 900 Nm (667 lb.ft) of torque and Bentley says that it is the most advanced 12-cylinder engine in history. The engine has undergone refinement since it was first introdued in 2003 and this has resulted in an increase of power by up to 27 per cent and 38 per cent increment in torque as well as a reduction of 38 per cent in emissions.
Each Bentley W12 engine has been built by hand and over 6.5 hours by a team of 45 craftspeople before the engine undergoes a highly sophisticated test regime of over an hour via three specialist diagnostic machines during the assembly.
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The engine goes through three levels of testing. First is the test for leakage and can be undertaken after the engine has been assembled to the point that fuel, water and oil systems can be closed. The second is Cold Test when the engine is loaded on to a testbed plate and connections are made to the engine loom and all engine systems, whilst a large electric motor couples to the engine via the crankshaft. This 15-minute cycle measures 600 individual properties and characteristics of the engine.
In the final test, each W12 is tested for a minimum of 21.5 minutes and runs up to 3,800 rpm with a maximum load of 300 Nm. One in every one hundred engines receives a full eight-hour power test, achieving 6,000 RPM, and must achieve 900Nm.
Bentley has built more than 100,000 W12 engines that have been hand-built at its production site in Crewe since 2002, producing more than six million horsepower.