It's about 2,000 pounds lighter than the road car.

Bentley unveiled the all-new Continental GT at the end of August and now the posh grand tourer is losing its road-legal status to go track-only for the new GT3 specification. If you’re finding the production model too soft in terms of design, the race car is anything but that. With a big carbon fiber splitter up front and a massive rear wing at the back, the latest race car from Crewe looks downright menacing also thanks to the vented front fenders and a diffuser likely visible from the moon. The muscular appearance was chiseled in the wind tunnel to make the race car as aerodynamically efficient as possible.

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While the street-legal Continental GT is powered by a biturbo W12 6.0-liter engine generating 626 horsepower, its more athletic counterpart uses an evolution of the 4.0-liter V8 fitted with a new dry sump, intake, and exhaust. Also equipped with a pair of turbos, the race-spec engine benefits from a Cosworth management system and delivers in excess of 550 horsepower when it’s not restricted. To ensure that it stops efficiently, Bentley has created new brakes tailored to the GT3, and it has also installed a revamped suspension.

Being a thoroughbred race car, it means the Continental GT3 had to endure a draconian diet to shave off a lot of weight compared to the regular GT. Indeed, Bentley Motorsport’ has applied their expertise to install carbon fiber body panels (including rear wing) and it has also stripped out the interior. The outcome is a race car that tips the scales at less than 2,866 lbs (1,300 kg), meaning that it has lost a whopping 2,081 lbs (944 kg) compared to the standard Conti.

The new GT3 race car has already entered a six-month testing phase and will go on sale June next year. Its official racing debut is scheduled for the opening round of the 2018 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup at Monza in Italy set for April 21-22.

Source: Bentley

Gallery: 2018 Bentley Continental GT3 race car

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BENTLEY REVEALS NEW CONTINENTAL GT3 RACE CAR

  • New Continental GT3 racecar based on all-new Continental GT road car

  • Bentley Motorsport aims for Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup titles

  • New entry into Intercontinental GT Challenge

  • All-new GT3 car starts comprehensive development programme

  • Customer sales start June 2018

9th November 2017, Crewe – Bentley Motorsport is today unveiling an all-new Continental GT3 racecar, currently in development for the 2018 motorsport season.

The second-generation Continental GT3 is the latest dedicated racecar in an acclaimed Bentley motorsport lineage that includes the 4½ Litre, Speed Six and Speed 8 Le Mans winners. The first-generation Continental GT3 has proven to be a championship-winning endurance racer, scoring 120 podiums and 45 wins across 528 races around the world to date.

Bentley’s Director of Motorsport, Brian Gush comments:

“After four years of success with our Continental GT3, we’re excited to reveal our second-generation car. 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.”

The New Continental GT3

Development of the new car has been led by the engineers of Bentley Motorsport’s in-house team based in Crewe, together with designers and technicians at Bentley’s motorsport technical partner, M-Sport.

The new Continental GT3 has been designed from the all-new Continental GT road car, utilising it’s mostly aluminium structure as the foundation to deliver a race-ready weight of significantly less than 1300 kg and helping to deliver an ideal weight distribution for racing.

The engine is a new development of the renowned and race-proven 4.0-litre Bentley twin-turbo V8, with a totally redesigned dry sump system and all-new intake and exhaust systems. Unrestricted power is in excess of 550 bhp.

Exterior aerodynamic surfaces have been crafted in the wind tunnel and are based on the shape of the road car, enhancing the muscular exterior panels with aerodynamic devices for additional downforce. Suspension and braking systems are new and bespoke to the Continental GT3.

The all-new racecar has already started a six-month test programme to pick up the mantle from its championship-winning predecessor, completing test work in the UK, France and Portugal. Upcoming development work includes full 24 hour endurance race simulations.

 

Bentley Motorsport 2018

Bentley Motorsport is also announcing its plans for the 2018 season, after 2017 proved to be the most successful season for the team, capturing the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup. Bentley Motorsport will run a pair of new Continental GT3 racers across Europe in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup again next year, and also compete around the world in the four-round Intercontinental GT Challenge.

The new Continental GT3 will make its race debut at the opening round of the 2018 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup at Monza. Updates from the development programme of the new racer, and confirmation of the 2018 driver line-up, will be issued by Bentley Motorsport in due course.

New Continental GT3 Specifications

Engine

4.0-litre direct injection twin-turbo V8, Cosworth engine management system

Power

Approx. 550 bhp derestricted

Oil System

Dry sump

Transmission

Rear wheel drive, Ricardo six-speed sequential transaxle gearbox, AP racing clutch, steering wheel mounted paddle-operated pneumatic gear shift

Drivetrain

Carbon fibre propshaft, limited slip differential

Suspension

Double wishbone suspension front and rear, four-way adjustable racing dampers

Steering

Electric power-assisted steering

Brakes

Alcon ventilated iron disc brakes front and rear, Alcon six-piston front calipers, four-piston rear calipers, driver-adjustable brake bias

Safety

FIA-specification steel roll cage, six-point FIA safety harness, onboard fire extinguisher, onboard pneumatic jack system

Fuel System

FIA-specification racing fuel cell

Electronics

Race-specification Bosch ABS and traction control. Lightweight race battery.

Wheels

BBS Motorsport 18” x 13” rims

Tyres

355 / 705 R18

Aerodynamics

Carbon fibre front splitter, rear wing and body panels. Lightweight, aerodynamically-optimised bumpers, bonnet, sills and fenders

Length

4860 mm

Width

2045 mm

Height

1355 mm

Weight

<1300 kg