Bentley Makes a True Supercar, Too


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Despite what many believe, stickers don’t actually add any horsepower to a car. Somehow, Bentley seems to have defied logic and done just that.

The Bentley Continental GT3-R was inspired by the GT3 race car, with graphics and aero bits stuck on all over to denote its uniqueness. The production numbers backed up its exclusive appeal, with just 300 units being sold worldwide and 99 of them coming to the United States, all of those receiving their own individual chassis number.

The basic colorway was Glacier White with two-tone striping and logo graphics adorning each side. The Akrapovič titanium exhaust system saves 7 kg of weight in the GT3-R, which hardly seems like much in a car the size of the Continental,  but its retuned acoustics are the far more noticeable difference as the car roars to life then pops and crackles once you let off the accelerator.

It looks and sounds like no other Bentley before it, but most importantly, it performs as such too.

572 horsepower is competitive among leagues of supercars, but Bentley doesn’t cater to those comparisons. Bentley swoons its customers with defining presence and luxury, so adding supercar-level performance to its most popular model was an entirely new venture. The 4-liter twin-turbo V8 isn’t changed so much on paper – its displacement is the same as the V8 S model – but new turbos and gear ratios allow the GT3-R to be quicker than any Bentley before it. Tested as quick as 3.3 seconds but advertised at 3.8, the GT3-R more or less loses the concept of time as it blasts off the line with a drama lacking from any Continental prior.

Even with every sense telling you the GT3-R is a new and different thing, a more ferocious thing, it still is what it is. It’s still a Bentley, for better or for worse.

The endearing thing about the modern supercar is the little foibles here and there that make it just a bit imperfect, a bit impractical. It’s what makes you save it only for special occasions. It, itself, is its own special occasion. But Bentleys have always been superior everyday cruisers, and the GT3-R is just the most superior one.

So you don’t have to save this supercar for simply a weekend drive. Drive it every day, because you can. It rides like a Bentley should – OK, maybe just a tad stiffer, but you need that with this performance – and features all the luxuries you’d be accustomed to, they just might be coated in carbon fiber or touched with Alcantara.

And the stickers, of course. Stickers make any car faster.