CREWE, England – A Bentley Continental GT has reinforced its status as the finest Grand Tourer yet produced by claiming the outright record for a production car during the Colorado Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on June 30 2019..
The car was driven by three-times champion and former ‘King of the Mountain’ New Zealander Rhys Millen with the giant luxmobile covering the 20km course in 10min18.488 – 8.4sec off the previous record and averaging 130kmh.
The twisting mountain road – once-upon-a-time raced as a gravel track with almost certain death the reward for a mistake – climbs 1525m through 156 bends. With the start line at 2850m and the finish at 4300m, the air is one-third the density of that at sea level.
Millen combined his driving skills with the world’s most advanced 12-cylinder engine to claim the record.
Bentley Motors director of motorsport, Brian Gush, told The Corner in a media release: “This record once again proves that the spirit of endeavour and desire to push the boundaries of automotive performance remain at the beating heart of Bentley.
”It clearly demonstrates the Continental GT’s astonishing breadth of ability.”
Millen said after his record run: “”This is an amazing finish to a wet, snowy, 2019 run at Pikes Peak! We came here with two goals in mind – to be the fastest production car up the mountain and to set a record.
”It was an incredible week. Today was a challenge with what Mother Nature threw at us but the Continental held strong all the way to the top. We’re now No. 1”
A year earlier the Bentley Bentayga demonstrated its outstanding performance by claiming the record for a production SUV on the Pikes Peak course – also driven by Millen – by taking two minutes off the previous fastest time.
The 2019 record run was the latest highlight of Bentley’s centenary year, Bentley reported.
”From motorsport records, through to the incredibly powerful road cars of the modern era, all of Bentley’s extraordinary cars have innovation hand-built into them. July 2019 marked Bentley’s 100th year – an incredible milestone achieved by few companies.
”A year-long series of special activities with celebrations at other events around the world,” Bentley said, ”will showcase our motoring evolution while highlighting its global success.