Bentley loves the annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. As of right now it holds records for the fastest SUV and fastest production car to scale the 20km, 4,800ft, 156-corner ascent in Colorado. This year it’s aiming for the ‘Time Attack 1’ record, a proper category for “modified and specialised production-based two and four-wheel drive vehicles”.
And it’s taking no chances. Welcome, one and all, to the outrageous Bentley Continental GT3 Pikes Peak. This modified GT3 racecar will be driven by Pikes Peak legend Rhys Millen at the 99th annual PHIHC in June.
His aim? To smash the existing record of 9:36.559 set last year by David Donner in a Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport.
The “the most extreme iteration of a Continental GT – or indeed any Bentley road car – ever” features the biggest rear wing yet fitted to a Bentley, plus a number of other aero enhancements specifically engineered to work at altitude. The GT’s 4.0-litre turbocharged has been fettled too, most significantly to run on biofuel that should cut GHG emissions by up to 85 perc ent versus normal petrol.
Bentley says: “This first step marks the start of a longer programme that will investigate both biofuels and e-fuels for their potential to power the Bentleys of past and present in a sustainable way.” Remember, the company will offer hybrid versions of all its cars by 2023 and is going all-electric in 2030.
The car is currently undergoing testing and development work in the UK before it’s shipped out to the States in time for June. It’s being run by British Continental GT3 customer team Fastr and K-PAX Racing, with help from M-Sport.
Fancy its chances?
STORY Tom Harrison