We here at Shifting Lanes have a soft spot for Bentley or more specifically Bentley's motorsports division. Several years ago we were lucky enough to meet Dyson Racing, the first team to campaign the Conti on American soil. When Bentley decided it wanted to take its Continental road racing it was quite ambitious. The Continental was a massive slice of British luxury. British luxury. Its sheer mass made it a less than ideal starting point for a race car.
Despite the lunacy of their idea Bentley not only took the Conti racing but enjoyed huge success with it.It won races in North America and Europe. If that didn't defy the odds enough for you, Bentley Team M-Sport won the Blancpain GT Endurance Cup teams’ title with their Bentley Continentals this past season.
Bentley is doubling down on their success. They just launched the brand new Continental GT3 and it looks sleeker yet meaner than the original. The original was a ridiculous thing to watch race. This enormous British box on wheels sounded phenomenal though, and joy of joys the new Conti will keep the thunderous 4.0 liter twin turbocharged V8. Obvious modifications to the street engine include custom intake, exhaust and a dry sump oil system.
“The new car leaves no area or system untouched in the search for even better performance, and the early test results are promising. The new Continental GT road car has proved to be a great starting point for the development of a new racer, and the engineering development work is true to Bentley’s impeccable standards.” Bentley Motorsport Director Brian Gush Said.
Bentley plans to race the Continental GT3 in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup and Intercontinental GT Challenge. The first round of the IGTC is at Bathurst, but due to Bathurst's sporting regulations the new 2018 Conti is ineligible thus it will make its competitive debut in April at Monza.