With four-time World Rally Champion Juha Kankkunen behind the wheel, a near stock Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible has set a new speed record for running on ice, clocking a cool 205.48 mph on the frozen waters of the Baltic Sea off the cost of Kankkunen's native Finland. Save for its roll cage, a rear-mounted parachute pack front/rear spoilers and a set of 20-inch Pirelli SottoZero II winter tires, Kankkunen's V12-powered, all-wheel-drive Continental Supersports GT droptop was unmodified. The two-way runs were made on a 10.3-mile track with times in a 1000-meter speed trap clocked by the Finland Traffic Police. The results were ratified and accepted by a representative for inclusion in the Guinness Book of World Records.
This was Kankkunen's second shot at the double-century target. In 2007, he drove a Bentley Continental GT to a record 199.93 mph in the same location. "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 600 horsepower 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. "Two hundred mph came up after five kilometers on sheet ice. Then it was just a question of getting everything right in the timing zone and hoping the snow kept away."
Wolfgang Dürheimer, Bentley's new Chairman and Chief Executive, said the company plans to celebrate this achievement "with a very special 'extreme' Bentley, which will be the most powerful model ever to bear the famed Winged B emblem." Production will be limited to just 100 units and the car will be unveiled at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show.