Bentley is recalling its racing heritage with a Continental GT racer for GT3 racing.
Bentley has a rich racing heritage that dates back to the 1920s, but the British luxury automaker has been absent from the racing scene since the company's sixth Le Mans victory back in 2003. But now the crew from Crewe is getting back in on the game (or at least toying with the idea) with the Continental GT3 concept. Based on the new the Continental GT Speed - Bentley's fastest road-going car to date - the Continental GT3 Concept just unveiled in Paris gives the public an idea of what a modern-day competition-spec Bentley could look like.
Designed to comply with FIA regulations for the GT3 class, the Continental racer builds on the GT Speed's durability and performance with what Bentley calls "state-of-the-art motorsport hardware." That includes an aggressive aerodynamic body kit complete with a massive front splitter and huge rear wing.
"The clear message from our customers is that Bentley belongs on the racetrack, and the Continental GT3 is the realisation of a dream we've had ever since the launch of the Continental GT," says Bentley chief exec Dr. Wolfgang Schreiber. "The new GT Speed is the perfect car for us to develop into a racer, and our work so far has shown huge potential. The Bentley Continental GT3 is set to show the world what the Continental GT is capable of in its most extreme form, and establishes a solid foundation for Bentley's long-term motorsport plans." The GT3 class regularly sees competitors with power levels in the 500-600-horsepower range.
The road-going Continental GT Speed makes 616hp out of its 6.0-liter twin-turbo W12, however for racing competitions that could be swapped for a racing-spec version of the firm's new V8. Bentley is remaining tight-lipped for now over engine plans for the endurance racer, so we will have to wait and see what the Flying B has in store for competition. The new racer is scheduled to hit the track by the end of 2013 when it promises to pick up the mantle of Bentley's earlier motorsport success. (Images courtesy of Bentley and Newspress.)