Bentley is launching special editions of the Continental GT coupe and Continental GTC convertible to mark the 20th anniversary of its last 24 Hours of Le Mans win.
The Bentley Le Mans Collection will be limited to 48 units globally, the automaker announced last week. The special editions will sport unique exterior styling elements inspired by the Bentley Speed 8 Le Mans number 7 prototype, which took overall victory in 2003.
The Le Mans Collection cars reference the Speed 8’s livery with Verdant Green paint and a centered Moonbeam racing stripe. The number 7 is also painted onto the mesh grille, a throwback touch to a much earlier era of racing. The grille itself is black, as is the lower front bumper, mirror caps, the lower surface of the trunk lid, and the 22-inch wheels. Red brake calipers and a smattering of carbon fiber complete the look.
The Bentley Rotating Display, which allows the central touchscreen to rotate out of view when not needed, is standard. When the touchscreen flips out of view, the panel houses a valve from the Le Mans-winning Speed 8’s engine. Wreaths symbolizing Bentley’s six Le Mans wins are inscribed on the dashboard and door-sill plates. Upholstery and steering-wheel trim are a combination of leather and suede-like Dynamica fabric, with piano black and high-gloss carbon fiber trim.
Le Mans Collection cars get Bentley’s soon-to-be-discontinued twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 engine, producing 650 hp and 664 lb-ft of torque, which propels the tribute cars from 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds and on to a top speed of 208 mph. An air suspension, four-wheel steering, and carbon-ceramic brakes are included as well.
The six Le Mans victories are a key part of the Bentley mythos, but the brand hasn’t had a consistent presence at the legendary endurance race. Bentley dominated with five wins in 1924, 1927, 1928, 1929, and 1930, but didn’t return to Le Mans until 2001. It hasn’t returned since the 2003 win, but has raced the Continental GT in the lower-level GT3 class, even taking victory at Australia’s Bathurst 12 Hour race in 2020. Bentley exited GT3 after the 2021 race season.
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