It’s been nearly a decade since Bentley captured the overall win at the Le Mans 24 Hours in 2003, and now the British automaker is in the preparation stages to possibly make a return to racing.
Before you get too excited that the famous marque will once again be campaigning race cars, there is no time-frame set in stone for Bentley’s return. The automaker is currently exploring its options in terms of cars and classes, employing the assistance of long-time motorsports expert Graham Humphrys.
Humphrys is perhaps most well known for his work on the Williams Motorsport BMW V12 LMR that captured the 1999 Le Mans 24 Hours victory, but also has experience at Spice Engineering and Aston Martin. Currently Humphrys is assisting to determine what would be feasible for Bentley, including the possibility of racing in the GT3 category with a Supersports variant of the latest Continental GT model.
Another option it’s considering right now is to wait for the all-new Continental or to produce what Brian Gush, Bentley chassis and powertrain director, calls “a racing sports car with a derivative for the road.” Last year, Gush expressed his desires to bring Bentley back to prototype racing, but admits that the complexity of the 2014 Le Mans rulebook could prevent that from happening.
Regardless, a return to racing by Bentley is extremely likely considering that Wolfgang Durheimer, Bentley CEO, has always favored the idea. Durheimer has even brought up the concept of selling Bentley race cars to customers similar to what Porsche does.