Nearly 100 years ago, Bentley was at Le Mans on day one.
While we mostly know the brand for its exquisite luxury and supremely comfortable models, racing has been a part of Bentley’s philosophy and DNA since the very beginning of the brand. Not long after Bentley was first established, the brand was at the very first running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1923, where it set the fastest lap and finished in a strong fourth place. Just one year later, Bentley won with its 3-Litre, and it did so four more times consecutively from 1927-1930. In 2001, Bentley returned to Le Mans with its EXP Speed 8 prototype, which finished on the podium in 2001, and just shy of the podium at fourth in 2002. However, in 2003, the car was redesigned, and renamed “Speed 8,” and the two Speed 8s that raced that year finished first and second. With 6 total Le Mans victories, Bentley remains the fifth most successful brand at the most respected and famous endurance race in the world.
As part of the brand’s celebrations for Monterey Car Week, and the beginning of a year of celebrations that honors the 100th anniversary of Le Mans, Bentley has brought the Speed 8 to Laguna Seca for a demonstration, where people will see it for the first time since it competed at 2003’s 12 Hours of Sebring, setting the fastest lap and placing third. After showing its incredible performance, the Speed 8 will be on display at The Quail, and it will also be at Bentley’s Signature Party, accompanying the unveiling of the Bentley Mulliner Batur. Performance, luxury, and heritage come together for Bentley’s epic presence at this year’s Monterey Car Week.