Juha Kankkunen has broken the World Ice Speed Record with an astonishing speed of 205.48 mph (330.695 km/h) which was held over one kilometre on a special ice track on the frozen waters of the Baltic Sea.
The driver, who has won the World Rally Championship four times for Finland, said:
“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. 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.”
The Bentley Continental Supersports convertible which made the record runs on E85 bioethanol and benefits from all-wheel drive, a 6-litre, 12-cylinder engine, a fully-welded, heavy-duty safety roll-cage, and Pirelli winter tyres (Pirelli SottoZero II 275/40R20).
Temperatures as low as minus 30 degrees, snow blizzards and crosswinds on the 16.5km track posed serious hazards.
Driving on a 70cm-thick layer of sea ice, the record was made on a 1000m long measured distance with the speed certified by officials from the Finland Traffic Police. The 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.
Bentley celebrated by announcing a special edition ‘extreme’ Bentley, which will be “the most powerful model ever to bear the famed Winged B emblem”. 100 units will be produced and the car will make its global debut at the Geneva Motor Show on 1st March.