205.48 mph (on ice!)
(from Bentley Press
Release) BENTLEY SUPERSPORTS SHATTERS WORLD SPEED RECORD ON
Rally champion, Juha Kankkunen
achieves 205.48 mph (330.695 km/h) in
extreme Bentley convertible
(Oulu, Finland. 15
February 2011) Finland’s four-time world rally champion Juha
Kankkunen drove a Bentley Continental Supersports convertible on the
hazardous frozen waters of the Baltic Sea, off the coast of Finland,
at a breathtaking 205.48 mph (330.695 km/h) to set a new world speed
record on ice.
Kankkunen was in irresistible form with his all-wheel drive,
6-litre, 12-cylinder Continental Supersports convertible which, in
line with the Company’s CO2 strategy, ran on biofuel. The world’s
fastest soft top enabled Juha to shatter his own 2007 world ice
speed record of 199.83 mph (321.6 km/h) set in the Continental GT at
the same location.
With the help of his own experienced team and Bentley engineers,
Kankkunen overcame the challenges of temperatures as low as minus 30
degrees, sudden snow blizzards and potentially dangerous crosswinds
on the 16.5km track on a 70cm-thick layer of sea ice. The record
attempt was driven on a 1000m long measured distance with the speed
certified by officials from the Finland Traffic Police. His new
world record was based on the average of two runs in opposite
directions with measured speeds ratified by a representative of The
Guinness Book of Records.
“The last time, I narrowly missed the magical 200 mph mark in a
Continental GT. When I heard about the Supersports I was determined
to go record breaking again with the Bentley Boys. This time, with
over 600bhp under the bonnet, a Quickshift transmission and the
security of the all-wheel drive system, the Supersports convertible
was the perfect car to go for the record. ” Kankkunen said.
“200mph came up after 5km on sheet ice. Then it was just a question
of getting everything right in the timing zone and hoping the snow
kept away. There’s nothing to beat driving a Bentley at these
speeds; the conditions may be perilous but the car responds so well
to the slightest adjustment which gives you the confidence to push
As with the previous record-breaking drive in the Continental GT the
Anglo-Finnish team used a car with minimum modification. A
fully-welded, heavy-duty safety roll-cage, along with Pirelli winter
tyres (Pirelli SottoZero II 275/40R20) and a rear bumper-mounted
parachute provided reassurance in case of an emergency. Front and
rear spoilers provided optimum high speed stability on the
To highlight Bentley’s environmental commitment to sustainable fuel
sources, Kankkunen’s Supersports Convertible was fuelled with E85
bioethanol rather than petrol (gasoline). All models in the
Continental range are capable of running on petrol (gasoline), E85
bioethanol or any combination of the two.
Wolfgang Dürheimer, Bentley’s new Chairman and Chief Executive,
“The ice speed record is an amazing feat by Juha Kankkunen, whose
skill and courage in extreme conditions truly make him one of the
modern-day Bentley Boys. We will be celebrating this achievement
with a very special ‘extreme’ Bentley, which will be the most
powerful model ever to bear the famed Winged B emblem.”
A limited edition of just 100 examples of this most extreme Bentley
will be made and the car will make its global debut at the Geneva
Motor Show on 1st March.
Bentley Motors’ and Juha
Kankkunen’s new world ice speed driving records were supported by
the following sponsors and technical partners:
BENTLEY – ‘Instruments for Professionals’ and brand partner of
Bentley Motors for the provision of specialist timing equipment.
JEFF GREEN – specialised warm weather clothing for all
technicians and engineers.
PERFORMANCE AND PROTECTION - manufacturer of advanced roll cages
for health and safety and motorsport applications since 1989.
IOGEN CORPORATION – E85 Bioethanol supplier.
JUHA KANKKUNEN: BRIEF CV
Juha Matti Pellervo Kankkunen, born 1959 in Laukaa, Finland
One of the most experienced rally drivers of all times
Four times rally World Champion (1986, 1987, 1991, 1993)
23 times World Rally Winner
Started his career in 1978
First World Rally win in 1985 (Safari Rally)
Won Dakar Rally in 1988
World ice speed record in 2007, in a Bentley Continental GT
HISTORY OF WORLD ICE SPEED RECORDS
Continental Supersports convertible: 205.48 mph (330.695 km/h)
driven by Juha Kankkunen
2007: Bentley Continental GT: 199.83 mph (321.6 km/h) driven by
1995: Bugatti EB110 Supersport: 184 mph (296 km/h)
BENTLEY’S EARLY HISTORY OF RECORD
1924: John Duff in a
Bentley 3-litre took records at Brooklands between 87mph (139.7
km/h) and 93 mph (149.3 km/h) and a Double-Twelve race victory
at 86.69 mph (139.2 km/h)
1925: A Bentley 3-litre established a 24-hrs record at Montlhery
at an average speed of 95 mph (152.9 km/h).
1927: The 24-hrs Grand Prix de Paris at Montlhery was won by a
Bentley 41/2 –litre at an average speed of 52.5 mph (84.5 km/h)
1928: A Bentley 3-litre driven by Dudley Froy became the first
car to average more than 115 mph (185.1 km/h) over a distance of
100 miles (160.9 km) at Brooklands
1929: Mrs Victor Bruce drove solo in a Bentley 41/2-litre at
Montlhery to set a Class C record at over 89mph (143.2 km/h)
1932: Tim Birkin in a Birkin blower single seater broke the
Brooklands Outer Circuit lap record with a speed of 137.96 mph
1934: Walter Hassan in a Barnato – Hassan single seater set a
new Brooklands Outer Circuit record of 142.6 mph (228.9 km/h).
It achieved a faster lap time of 143.11 mph (230.3 km).