Bentley sales are down thanks to ‘emotional sensitivity,’ CEO says

Bentley sales are down thanks to ‘emotional sensitivity,’ CEO says - Business and Finance - News

Sales Decline of Bentley’s Ultra-Luxury Cars and SUVs: A Response to Economic Sensitivities

After witnessing a consistent sales growth for four consecutive years, Bentley encountered an 11% decrease in sales of their high-end cars and SUVs last year.

The CEO of Bentley, Adrian Hallmark, addressed this matter in a presentation to reporters. He attributed the decline to “a level of emotional sensitivity” among the brand’s affluent clientele.

A Shift in Buying Preferences: Leasing and Monthly Payments

According to a Bentley spokesperson, approximately 30% of customers opted for leasing their Bentleys in 2023, which represented a considerable increase compared to the previous year. This trend highlights that even wealthy buyers were wary of substantial monthly payments when purchasing a vehicle.

Monthly car payments have escalated to unprecedented levels due to high interest rates intended to mitigate inflation. In the last quarter of 2023, the average monthly payment for a new vehicle in the United States was $739 on a 68-month loan, as reported by

Monthly Payments: A Significant Factor for High-End Vehicles

Monthly payments for automobiles, such as Bentleys with a base price of at least $200,000, can be substantial.

Leasing: A Popular Choice to Keep Monthly Payments Manageable

Customers often prefer leasing rather than purchasing a vehicle to minimize monthly payments. In a lease, the lessee pays a monthly fee based on the vehicle’s projected depreciation value by the end of the term, inclusive of fees and interest. The average 36-month lease payment for a Bentley Bentayga SUV, Bentley’s most popular model, amounts to around $4,250, according to

Comparative Sales Figures: Bentley vs. Rolls-Royce and Lamborghini

Bentley sold 13,560 cars and SUVs in the previous year, marking a decrease of 11% compared to 2022. Bentley’s sales figures are minute in comparison to more mainstream luxury brands like Audi, which sold 1.9 million vehicles globally in the same period. Despite this, Bentley outperforms costlier brands such as Rolls-Royce, which sold just over 6,000 vehicles last year.

Resilient Demand for Ultra-Luxury Cars: Rolls-Royce, Lamborghini and Ferrari

Despite Bentley’s sales decline, not all ultra-luxury car buyers exhibited sensitivity. Rolls-Royce, a corporate relative of Bentley and another VW Group brand, recorded an all-time high sales figure last year, surpassing 6,000 units for the first time. Rolls-Royce also achieved a record profit of €723 million or approximately $789 million.

Lamborghini, another VW Group brand, also posted an all-time record year with sales exceeding 10,000 units for the first time and a record profit of €723 million or approximately $789 million.

Demand for these exorbitantly priced vehicles appears to be escalating, according to Stephan Winkelmann, CEO of Lamborghini. He shared this insight in an interview with News Finder, attributing it to the increasing number of ultra-wealthy individuals around the world.

Diverging Trends: Bentley vs. Rolls-Royce and Lamborghini

Bentley’s sales decline, although significant, was not universal among ultra-luxury brands. While Bentley sold fewer cars and earned 17% less total profit last year compared to the previous year, customers gravitated towards more opulently outfitted or even fully customized models, according to Bentley’s company statement.