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Bentley unveils first luxury showroom in Seoul

CEO renews commitment to Korea, Bentley’s biggest market in Asia-Pacific

March 8, 2023 - 15:17 By Byun Hye-jin

Bentley Motors Chairman and CEO Adrian Hallmark speaks during a press conference held at Bentley Cube in Gangnam, Seoul. (Bentley Korea)

Bentley Motors said Wednesday it has opened Bentley Cube, its first high-end retail showroom, in South Korea, catering to the fast-growing number of luxury customers craving exclusive experiences.

Located in Gangnam, southern Seoul, the four-story flagship shop offers a private space for Bentley customers to enjoy the brand’s bespoke luxury lifestyle.

“Korea is a leading country in luxury sales, the biggest market in the Asia-Pacific region. (The grand opening of Bentley Cube) is an expression of confidence that shows the growing importance of the Korean market,” said Adrian Hallmark, the Bentley Motors chairman and CEO, during a press conference at Bentley Cube.

Last year, Bentley sold a record-high 775 cars in Korea, a 53.2 percent jump from a year earlier. The figure was also the highest among Asia-Pacific countries -- the first feat for the Korean unit.

The British carmaker said the brand is gaining traction among more drivers in Korea, one of the highest luxury spending countries in terms of sales per capita.

“Compared to our competitors, the key to success was that Bentley’s strong product portfolio really hit the nail in terms of customer experience and in terms of quality and (high-end) lifestyle,” said Nico Coleman, regional director at Bentley Motors Asia Pacific.

The carmaker vowed to pursue its strategy of “value over volume” -- through tapping into more luxury customers here -- spearheaded by Mulliner, its car customization service division.

This year, it plans to launch two new model derivatives called the S and the Azure, each with sporty and luxury-themed trims.

As for this year’s first Mulliner Korean edition, the automaker will roll out 10 units of Continental GT that was inspired by the Korean modern artist Ha Tae-im.

“In a move to meet the higher bars for sophisticated customer taste, we have launched several online and offline loyalty programs last year, including Bentley Seoul Membership,” said Bentley Seoul CEO Kim Han-joon.

The membership program offers a wide range of exclusive services spanning from VIP benefits to use at department stores to high-end hotels. Around 50 percent of the customers here have signed up, the firm said.

Stressing sustainability as a key vision, the carmaker plans to invest 2.5 billion pounds ($2.95 billion) in the transition into electrification and carbon reduction facilities. It plans to go fully electric and carbon neutral by 2030.

When asked about potential business ties with Korean battery makers in terms of electrification, CEO Hallmark said, “We do intend to work in partnership with innovative vehicle tech providers here.”