Bentley design chief wants a hotter version of the Continental GT3-R with RWD

Article by Christian A., on July 27, 2014

Back in June at the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed, Bentley introduced the Continental GT3-R, a new model inspired by the Continental GT3 race car. It appears that this limited edition model was a success as Bentley sold all the 300 units that will be hand-built in Crewe and finished in its motorsport division.

Although it was revealed as a range-topping performance version of the Continental, Bentley’s design chief Luc Donckerwolke says that a rear-wheel-drive version of this model is possible and customers are already asking for an even more extreme one.

Donckerwolke said that he wants to celebrate Bentley’s race success and build an even more extreme version of the Continental GT, not only with an updated powertrain but also with a new styling that will closely link the race and road cars.

In addition, Donckerwolke believes that a RWD version of the Continental GT will bring younger buyers to the brand. For those who don’t know, the Continental GT3-R is powered by a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine that delivers 580 hp (426 kW) at 6,000 rpm and 700 Nm of torque from 1,700 rpm.

The engine is bolted to a 8-speed ZF automatic gearbox with a shorter output gearing that delivers the power to a renowed all-wheel drive system. As a result, the Continental GT3-R is able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 3.8 seconds and from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 3.6 seconds.

All of Bentley’s creation fuses luxury and performance, and the carmaker took no exception with the new Continental GT3-R. In fact, the two-seat Continental GT3-R combines its dynamic capability with a luxurious cabin that makes use of motorsport-inspired materials like carbon fiber, Alcantara and the finest leather.

The cabin of the Continental GT3-R features two new bespoke sporting seats finished in Beluga black leather with diamond-quilted Alcantara. These seats feature deeper bolsters with newly designed foam layers for comfort. Alcantara is also used as a trim for the steering wheel and gear shifter while carbon fiber is employed for the center console, fascia panels and the elegantly sculpted door casings with diamond-quilted Alcantara inner panels. The new distinctly trimmed rear cabin is finished in leather and Alcantara and features a carbon fiber surround.

Serving as beautiful contrast for the Beluga leather, carbon fiber and Alcantara is a green accent that is employed as a hide color on the instrument panel, seats and door panels. This is also employed as contrast stitching on the seats and diamond-quilted areas. The seats to the headrests also feature receive GT3-R stitching in contrast-green thread. GT3-R badging can be found on the center console, sill treadplates and passenger-side fascia panel.

Meanwhile, the assertive exterior of the Continental GT3-R gives the sporty luxury car a more purposeful stance. Its assertive appearance is made possible by a new front splitter and a new fixed rear wing on the boot lid, both of which are made in carbon fiber. The bonnet of the new Continental GT3-R sports two vents to improve its engine cooling capability and to serve as a styling element where form follows function.

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