Bentley Bentayga Sets Production SUV Record at Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
Mostly Stock Luxury SUV Climbs Pikes Peak in Less than Eleven Minutes
The Bentley team had a few reasons to celebrate following the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hillclimb in Colorado last weekend, as the company’s Bentayga entrant set a course record for production SUVs. Cresting the mountain in 10 minutes and 49.9 seconds, the mostly stock Bentayga beat the previous record holder by nearly two minutes.
Racing legend Rhys Millen piloted the Bentayga, averaging 66.5 miles per hour over the 12.42-mile course. The hillclimb, which features more than 150 corners and has a vertical relief of about 5,000 feet, is a taxing exercise for any vehicle.
“What an incredible machine,” Millen said of his run. “To take a luxury SUV with minimal modifications and be able to drive up this course in under 11 minutes is a huge testament to the performance and level of engineering in the Bentayga.”
To prepare it for Pikes Peak, Bentley engineers replaced the Bentayga W12’s luxury front seats with more race-friendly chairs. The rear bench was also removed, and the Bentayga received a fire suppression system and rollcage for added safety. DOT-certified Pirelli tires rode under the sport-ute, and it came with a more performance-oriented exhaust. Other than that, it was entirely stock, right down to the eye-searing green paint.
Bentley will commemorate the SUV’s participation at Pikes Peak with a 10-car run of specially spec’d vehicles. The Pikes Peak Bentayga is painted either Radium Satin—to match the racer—or Beluga Black, and the 22-inch wheels are painted Beluga with Radium accents. The Pikes Peak Edition jettisons all exterior chrome, replaced with gloss black trim and a carbon-fiber splitter, side skirts, diffuser, and rear spoiler. Each example of the limited run also gets a Pikes Peak–themed fender accent.
Inside, the limited edition gets Beluga and Key Lime upholstery, with Alcantara accents, carbon-fiber interior trim, and Pikes Peak doorsills. Under the skin, the Pikes Peak Bentayga gets the same W12 engine, 48V-powered anti-roll suspension, and adaptive suspension as the racer.
“I had a great run—the car was planted all the way up and gave me the confidence I needed to push hard,” Millen said. “I’m delighted to take the SUV record for Bentley and for everyone that’s been involved in this project.”
Those interested in picking up one of the 10 Pikes Peak Bentayga models can place their orders starting this August.