Bentley Continental GT3 to attack Pikes Peak with 750 hp

Bentley on Friday released more technical details on the renewable-fuel Continental GT3 race car it plans to run at the 2021 Pikes Peak hill climb, scheduled for June 27.

The British automaker is hoping for a third Pikes Peak class record, this time in the Time Attack 1 class. Bentley took the record for production SUVs with the Bentayga in 2018, and the production-car record with the Continental GT in 2019.

Because it’s competing in the Time Attack 1 class this year, Bentley was allowed to enter a modified vehicle. Specifically, a modified version of a car raced in the popular GT3 category before Bentley’s exit at the end of 2020.

Bentley Continental GT3 Pikes Peak

The GT3 racer is powered by the same twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 used in the Continental GT road car, but tuned to produce 750 hp and 737 lb-ft of torque at sea level. While the thinner air at altitude (the Pikes Peak starting line is at 9,300 feet above sea level) robs engines of power, Bentley claims the engine will have a higher output for the race.

Modifications include additional boost pressure (more than 31.9 psi, Bentley said), new connecting rods, pistons, and a carbon-fiber intake manifold to handle that extra pressure, plus custom Inconel exhaust manifolds from Akrapovič.

The engine runs on what Bentley calls 98RON renewable racing fuel. Bentley didn’t provide much detail, only saying that the fuel is a “blend of advanced biofuels,” and calling it a “technological stepping stone” to commercial renewable fuels with up to 85% fewer greenhouse-gas emissions.

Modifications to the rest of the car include an upgraded cooling system, water-cooled brakes, and Pikes Peak-specific suspension settings, including reduced camber and the softest-possible springs and anti-roll bars, allowing more weight transfer under braking, Bentley said. The gearbox is the same unit used in the standard GT3, with a special lubricant from Mobil 1.

Bentley Continental GT3 Pikes Peak

Bentley Continental GT3 Pikes Peak

Thin air means aerodynamic elements don’t generate as much downforce as they would at sea level. To compensate for that, Bentley installed the largest rear wing it’s ever fitted to a car, plus a two-plane front splitter and separate dive planes at the front for balance. At sea level, these elements generate 30% more downforce than the standard GT3, Bentley said.

Development was split between the U.S. and the U.K. Bentley conducted chassis-development testing at California’s Willow Springs racetrack, and high-altitude testing in Aspen, Colorado, with dyno testing of an engine running the 98RON fuel in the U.K.

To drive the Continental GT3, Bentley tapped three-time Pikes Peak champion Rhys Millen. He earned Bentley’s two previous Pikes Peak records, but can he make it three for three? We’ll find out soon.

db9c402373bb914d2bbdd8618df13ab3?s=96&d=mm&r=g
Auto Experthttps://automobiledot.com
As an Editor and an Automobile Geek, it's my pleasure to share my knowledge about Automobiles and their various aspects that can impact our lives.

Latest Posts