An actor is not always in front of a camera; he can also be
racing a Bentley Continental GT Speed and setting a new speed record. Idris
Elba, star of Luther and The Wire, piloted a Bentley to break the
historic ‘Flying Mile’ UK land speed record set by Sir Malcolm Campbell in 1927
as he reached a top speed of 180.361 mph (290.26km approx) at the wheel of a new Continental GT Speed on
Pendine Sands, Wales in England. This broke the existing record of 174.8 mph
(281.31km approx.) set by Sir Malcolm nearly 90 years ago in his legendary
Napier-Campbell Blue Bird. The record was independently verified by the UK
Elba, who famously played Nelson Mandela in the multi-award
winning Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, said: “I'm absolutely elated to have
broken the 'Flying Mile' at Pendine Sands. It’s an honour to have taken on the
challenge, and to successfully follow in the footsteps of the illustrious Sir
Despite some challenging tidal conditions on the beach in
south Wales, the record was broken in the Crewe-built Continental during
filming for an upcoming four-part Discovery Channel series, Idris Elba: No
Limits, which will air in July.
The Bentley Continental GT Speed is powered by Bentley’s
iconic 6-litre twin-turbo W12 engine which develops 626 bhp approximately and
820 Nm for instantly accessible high performance. Coupled with a new ZF
eight-speed close-ratio automatic transmission and state-of-the-art engine
management software, the GT Speed despatches the zero-to-sixty sprint in 4.0
seconds (0-100 km/h in 4.2s), on its way to a top speed of 331 km/h (206 mph).
In the Bentley Speed tradition, outstanding performance is
matched by an enhanced chassis with up-rated springs, anti-roll bars and
bushes, a lowered ride height (by 10mm front and rear) together with re-tuning
of the electronically controlled damping and steering systems.
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