The Bentley factory in Crewe Cheshire will scale back production due to the current economic crisis. The company is reportedly looking for voluntary redundancies before being forced to lay off workers. The three day week on three shifts will move to a four day week on two shifts.
Bentley, which is now owned by German car giant Volkswagen, is the latest luxury brand to announce cutbacks, with BMW, Land Rover and Mercedes all reducing production of some of its slower-selling models.
Bentley’s range of cars starts at around £115,000 up to £230,000 for the most expensive. According to figures at the end of September sales are down nearly 23% for the year to date from 2007. Bentleys main market in the US states of Florida and California have also been hit due to the worsening economic climate. It now seems that the spending habits of the super wealthy are affected by the current credit crunch. Experts put the slump in sales down to the combination of increased fuel prices, carbon taxes and executives not in a position to spend big on company cars during the tough conditions.