At the upcoming 2018 Pikes Peak challenge, Volkswagen will be gunning for the fastest electric car record with the I.D. R Pike Peak racer. Together with one of the group's subsidiary, Bentley, the Crewe-based luxury brand will also be chasing for a record themselves; bringing out a lightly-modified W12 Bentayga SUV.
Bentley will be going after the production SUV record at the upcoming pikes peak. To do so, they have lightly modified a Bentayga to take on the harrowing hillclimb. A roll cage, racing seats, harnesses, and a fire supression system have been installed just like any other competition car. As per the rules however, some off the interior trim has been temporarily removed; some meaning 300 kg. It is also fitted with select Pirelli DOT-marked range tires to help improve grip going up the course.
Under the hood, the factory 600 PS W12 remains unchanged with the only thing swapped out is the Akrapovic exhaust. That said, the road-adaptive air suspension and 48V electric active anti-roll control also have been left untampered. Completing the makeover is an OEM Bentley Styling Specification kit, which adds a carbon fiber splitter, diffuser, side skirts and an aerodynamic rear wing.
Behind the wheel of the Bentley's Pikes Peak challenger is professional drifter and racing driver Rhys Millen. For those wondering, Millen has consistently competed in the 20 km hill climb for the past couple of years now, even taking home multiple victories in various categories.
“We’ve honed the Bentayga’s incredible abilities and ensured we have a car for Pikes Peak that’s both safe and fast through two very productive test sessions with the Bentley Motorsport team. The course is one you can only attack with a car that can gain and lose speed very quickly, because it’s so tight and twisty,” said Millen.
The 96th edition of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb will be held this Sunday, on June 24.