Bentley wasn’t always known as a Rolls-Royce for more sporting individuals. Prior to the company’s purchase by Rolls-Royce in 1931, Bentley was responsible for creating exquisite vehicles that were bonafide performance machines on the track. In 1924, W.O. Bentley’s creations would experience the first of many Le Mans wins.
The 1924 Bentley 3/8-Liter “Hawkeye Special” is a very unique vehicle for plenty of reasons, one being its very origins. This vehicle started out as chassis 477, a highly-desirable “Red Badge” Speed model. What makes this vehicle so special is the fact that most Bentley buyers purchased the rolling chassis and applied their own coachwork at significant cost. The Hawkeye Special features a distinctive alloy body created in the early 1970s by renowned builder John Guppy and Hawkeye Wijkander, hence its namesake.
The 3/8 designation stands for a 3-liter chassis fitted with an 8-liter engine. In this case, the original engine was replaced with a 6.5-liter engine that once produced a stock 140 horsepower. However, this engine was given a good workover that enlarged its displacement to a full 8.0 liters and its engine power rating to an awe-inspiring 437 horsepower.
Onlookers can easily distinguish the Hawkeye Special from other Bentley’s not just by its unique coachwork, but also by the six side pipes extending across the left side of the coachwork. The coachwork is covered in classic British Racing Green while the interior is finished in genuine leather matching the exterior color.
Once you see and hear this vehicle in person, it’s easy to stand in awe of such a magnificent machine that literally exudes power from its very form. W.O. Bentley would definitely be proud of this stunning creation.
The Bentley EXP 9 F Concept is a Bentley with a twist. It looks similar to the Continental GT, but it has been sized-up, and has a slight SUV look. You can tell by the large matrix grille and round headlights, that it is definitely a Bentley. This concept car was designed after the fast moving bird, the falcon – thus the F in the car’s name.
Under the hood of the Bentley EXP 9F Concept is a 6.0 liter twin-turbocharged W-12 engine with 600 horsepower. The transmission is an automatic eight-speed. The 23-inch alloy wheels compliment the design of this vehicle very well.
In typical Bentley style, the Bentley EXP 9 F Concept, has a luxurious cabin. The seats are covered with soft leather that is quilted, and the interior is trimmed in wood and metals. Not just one metal, but three: polished aluminum, polished bronze and polished gunmetal. The roof is designed with a glass panel that gives a panoramic view. The seats in the back recline, and have foot rests that are powered. Passengers in the back can connect to the internet, and can keep their champagne and glasses cool in a special compartment.
What is different about this Bentley, or any other SUV, is that the Bentley EXP 9 F Concept has a picnic area that pops up from the tailgate, and is decked out with an awning, umbrellas, picnic baskets with cocktail glasses, plates and silverware, and there is also a champagne bucket.
The 2008 Bentley Continental GT Zagato takes the Continental GT one step further. A culmination of the classic Continental GT Speed and the unique designs of Zagato, only nine of these super-sleek vehicles were produced. Zagato was required to overcome many obstacles with this Bentley in order to maintain the basic functioning of the high-quality Bentley Continental GT.
The most noticeable enhancements on the GT Zagato, also named the GTZ, are the changes to the body lines, a very prominent front fender and double-bubble roof. The rear-end of the vehicle is rounded as well, with a sportier taillight configuration. In addition to the body enhancements, the 2008 Bentley Continental GT Zagato got a brand new paint design. The body enhancements are further pronounced with a two-tone paint that’s complete with hand painted pin-stripes, which complement the interior of the vehicle.
One of the most common features in a vehicle that has been worked over by Zagato is a noticeable weight difference. This isn’t true with the heavy Continental GT conversion. The stock 2008 Bentley Continental GT weighs in at 2350 kg, while the GTZ only loses 100 kg. While this is a significant amount of weight, it’s not the type of weight decrease that normally accompanies a Zagato work-over.