Published on March 12th, 2017 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Bentley moving away from snob appeal to sporty appeal
Bentley is now in its 4th racing season and has already amassed 38 wins in 406 races across the globe to date. On many weekends throughout the year, Bentley race cars challenge established race teams from Corvette, Ferrari, Porsche, Jaguar, Aston Martin, Mercedes-AMG and even BMW.
Bentley owners are invited into the pits to soak up the myriad sights, sounds and smells of motor racing, a far cry from the country-club settings with which Bentley is often associated.
This latest racing effort uses a GT3 derivative of the Continental coupe Bentley sells. The reasoning is simple: Vehicles competing in the GT3 group are based on production cars. Participating in this class lets Bentley draw a clear connection between what’s lapping the track and what’s selling at the showroom (even if the competition Bentleys are race-specific custom machines hiding underneath bodywork that looks like a production car).
The move also allowed Bentley to market a high-performance Continental GT3-R model in 2015 to 300 global customers at a price tag of around USD340,000 each (RM1.6million before local taxes and profits). It’s the super-high-end version of “win on Sunday, sell on Monday.”
For 2017 race calender the Bentley Racing Boys are back with 6 factory race teams who appear at customer and media events to promote the Bentley lifestyle. Bentley also garners their input on the development of its production cars.
The revived race and customer combination gives Bentley an important tool to help the brand move away from being uptight and snobbish and into the garages of young vibrant rich owners. The new money millionaires.