Rhys Millen to pilot Bentley Bentayga in 2018 Pikes Peak

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2018 Bentley Bentayga Pikes Peak International Hill Climb challenger

2018 Bentley Bentayga Pikes Peak International Hill Climb challenger

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Racing up a mountain is probably the last place you'd expect to see a Bentley Bentayga, but the ultra-luxury SUV will arrive this June to tackle one of the world's oldest and most famous hill climbs: the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Bentley on Tuesday revealed the specially prepped Bentyaga that will race to the clouds on June 24 and confirmed that 2-time Pikes Peak winner Rhys Millen will be doing the driving.

The automaker is keen to beat the 12:35.61 record for production SUVs at Pikes Peak, set by Paul Dallenbach in 2013 behind the wheel of a Land Rover Range Rover Sport. To do so, Millen will need to average at least 60 mph.

Rhys Millen

Rhys Millen

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The Bentley should be up to the challenge considering it has a 90-horsepower advantage over the Range Rover Sport used to set the record in 2013. The 12.42-mile course with 156 turns is also completely paved now as well.

The Bentayga Millen will pilot will feature a standard 6.0-liter twin-turbocharged W-12 delivering 600 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque to all four wheels (the Bentayga is also available with V-8 and hybrid options). Apart from a few modifications for safety, the only non-production component will be an exhaust system from Akrapovič. In every other respect, including the air suspension with electro-mechanical anti-roll bars, the SUV will be stock standard.

This marks the second major motorsport announcement from the British luxury brand. Bentley also debuted its new Continental GT3 racer last November, based on the latest Continental GT road car. The racer will take over following a successful 2017 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup series, making its debut next month at Monza.

 
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