Bentley Motors have released this video showing Australian racing legend, John Bowe, taking a 2016 Bentley Continental GT Speed to its 206mph top speed on the derestricted Stuart Highway in the Northern territory, Australia.
The Stuart Highway covers a distance of 1,761 miles (2,834 km) from Darwin in the Northern Territory to Port Augusta, South Australia. This is about the same distance as London to Istanbul. In October 2013 the local Government announced a trial period of reverting to an open speed limit on the 120-mile (200 km) stretch between Alice Springs and Barrow Creek.
Bentley Continental GT top speed run – the driver
John Bowe is not only a six-time Australian touring car champion and two-time Bathurst 1,000 champion, but also he currently races a Bentley Continental GT3 in Australia with Flying B Racing. No wonder Bentley Motors thought him the perfect driver to tackle a high-speed run in the ‘Red Centre’.
The Car – forces at 206mph
The 626 bhp, 607 lb ft, 6.0-litre W12-powered GT Speed Grand Tourer reached its top speed in just 76 seconds, covering a distance of 9.4 kilometres in the process. Flat out, the Bentley Continenal GT Speed hit 206mph, 92 metres a per second (the equivalent to a football pitch).
The physics behind the Bentley Continental GT top speed run are pretty impressive too. At top speed, the Bentley Continental GT Speed is circulating 216 litres of coolant through its engine and radiator every minute; drawing over 4,700 litres of air through its radiator a second and using 80 per cent of its 626bhp engine power just to overcome aerodynamic loads.
John Bowe said: “This isn’t a modified racecar; it’s a luxurious grand touring road car fresh off the production line. It took us a little over a minute to go from a standstill to 206 mph. That’s extraordinary. Even when you break through the 200 mph barrier, the GT Speed just keeps accelerating.”
Bentley were keen to point out that the high-speed runs were performed in controlled conditions, with a section of the Stuart Highway closed with the assistance of the Northern Territory Government. Full safety checks performed before each run, while helicopter support kept an eye out for stray kangaroos.
The video is used by kind permission of the copyright holder for editorial purposes only. All rights remain with the copyright holder.