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Bentley Would Return To Le Mans If Battery Tech Were Ready



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The 24 Hours of Le Mans is seeing renewed interest from automakers as a result of new regulations defining new classes. For Bentley, though, that’s not enough.

The brand, which is no stranger to Le Mans, could be enticed into returning to the competition but, according to CEO Adrian Hallmark, would only be interested under certain conditions.

“Today there is no battery that can run at Formula 1 speeds for 24 hours, and attempts to get even near to that goal are not there yet,” Hallmark told Autocar recently. “Furthermore, we don’t see hydrogen as a sustainable way of achieving that goal yet either.”

Also Read: Porsche Teases LMDh Prototype For WEC And IMSA Championships

As a result, it will not return to the famed French race. Not yet, anyway.

“As soon as the technology is at a point that it can achieve those parameters using battery-electric technology we’d love to be there, fighting for the win again,” said Hallmark.

As its CEO intimated, Bentley has a rich history at Le Mans, winning in 1924, 1927, 1928, and 1930 before becoming one of just two teams to beat Audi at the height of its powers in 2003.

There’s a bit of a renaissance happening right now at endurance racing. Toyota, Alpine, Ferrari and Glickenhaus have confirmed entries for the Hypercar class, while Acura, Audi, and Porsche have all expressed interest in the Le Mans Daytona Hybrid class.

With the Volkswagen Group’s interest in electrification,it’s not surprising to hear that Bentley would only be interested in racing in an electric series. Besides, if Porsche were to race too, how many VW brands can compete against each other in the LMDh category?

Updated: March 23, 2021 — 11:43 pm

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