7,933cc Quad-Turbocharged W16 Engine
Duplex 32-Point Electronic Fuel Injection
1,500bhp at 6,700rpm
7-Speed Twin-Clutch Manual Automatic Transmission
4-Wheel Independent Suspension
4-Wheel Disc Brakes
*The epitome of hypercar achievement
*1 of only 500 to be built over the model run
*Only 365 delivery miles
*Considered by many to be the ultimate road-going machine
THE BUGATTI CHIRON
In the spring of 2000, Dr. Ferdinand Piëch, then chairman of the Volkswagen Group, stood before industry notables at the Geneva Auto Salon, and in reserved, yet convincing tones, pronounced that subsidiary Bugatti would produce a supercar — armed with 1,000 horsepower and assigned the goal of accelerating from 0 to 60mph in less than three seconds, reaching speeds over 250 mph, and cossetting the occupants in comfort and luxury.
Applause, and some amused barks, greeted Piëch's remarks — only a few production cars of the day could exceed even 600 horsepower — but no one dared doubt the man who had engineered the all-conquering Porsche 917 racecar, for years the fastest machine on pavement. Piëch's legendary mania for perfection meant that Bugatti would be free to utilize every resource in its quest. Five years later, Piëch's promise was fulfilled by the Bugatti Veyron, which astonished the automotive world with a 1,001bhp quad-turbo 16-valve engine that elevated the mid-engine two-seater into the realm of the hypercar.
Piëch's plan, of course, included further development of the Veyron, which culminated in the 1,183bhp Super Sport setting a land-speed record of 267.8mph. The success of these thrusts into the future of the automobile only fed the fires that had forged the Veyron, and the result is the spectacular motorcar offered today, the Bugatti Chiron.
Named after Louis Chiron, a legendary Bugatti driver, the Chiron shares much with its forerunner, including the carbon-fiber structure, Haldex all-wheel drive, independent suspension with limited slip differentials at each axle, and W16 quad-turbo engine. Bugatti learned much from the Veyron's ten-year production run, from countless hours of testing and development, and from customer feedback, that the Chiron is vastly improved in every dynamic measure: stability at high speed, road-holding, passenger comfort, ease of driving, and, in the most telling area for a hypercar, power delivery.
It would take several volumes of dense engineerese to fully explore the Chiron's technology. A few examples of this progress include a monocoque structure that's 8-percent stiffer than the Veyron's, putting it on par, says Bugatti, with the chassis of an LMP1 endurance racer; a new adaptive suspension system; active underbody aerodynamics; a stiffer and wider carbon-fiber chassis; the largest clutches ever fitted to a production car; and a superior wheel and tire setup.
The longer, lower, and wider Chiron also sports a new look, dominated on each side by the Bugatti "C," which forms historic ties to such classic Bugattis as the Type 57SC Atlantic. However, more than simply a visual homage, the two are principally large intake scoops for engine cooling, a striking example of the Chiron's design philosophy: "Form follows performance." Another, less apparent melding of design and function are two inlets inboard of the front headlamp arrays that channel air to the massive front brakes. Numerous other visible and hidden technical tricks serve to keep the Chiron firmly planted at the same time its mechanicals are treated to conditions favorable for survival in the face of the scorching performance and heat generated by the midship-mounted powerplant.
The most powerful Bugatti engine ever, the Chiron's revised W16 is rated at 1,500PS (1,479bhp) along with a spine-tingling 1,600Nm (1,180 lbs./ft) of torque, which is delivered in an almost flat curve from 2,000-6,000rpm on the way to its peak at 6,600rpm. The power gains come from increased boost pressures from four larger turbos, two on each bank of cylinders and now configured to run sequentially. The two smaller units work alone from 2,000rpm to 3,800rpm, when the other two larger turbos begin to contribute forced induction. More air needs more fuel, which is supplied by 32 revised Duplex injectors, and more power needs more cooling, which is more than adequately supplied by a total of ten radiators circulating almost 50-liters of coolant between them. Moreover, the Chiron's exterior was, from the start, specially designed to optimize air intake for the cooling systems as well as to increase downforce and reduce lift.
The engine itself — four banks of four cylinders around a common crankshaft — received so many upgrades that 95 percent of the parts have new numbers. The internals, including titanium con-rods, are lighter and stronger, the crankshaft is new, and a weight-saving regimen led to use of carbon fiber for the chain housing, intake tube, and improved charge air cooling system. At the back is a new, less restrictive titanium exhaust system with six tailpipes. Two of the pipes exit downward on the left and right sides of the car, creating a diffuser that increases downforce at speed.
Bugatti says the revised W16 can propel the Chiron from 0 to 60mph in 2.4 seconds, 0 to 124mph in 6.5 seconds, and 0 to 186mph in just 13.6 seconds. It also recently set a world record for a run from 0mph to 249mph and back to 0mph in just 42 seconds. Credit the new, huge carbon-ceramic brakes for this amazing feat. Though Bugatti lost the 254mph top-speed record it had earned with the Veyron, factory representatives insist a new attempt will be made with the Chiron. Unofficial guesstimates put the car's top speed at well over 280mph, above the current restricted 261mph of the production car, but getting tires to stay together at such a high speed is a serious technical challenge.
Unlike the Veyron, which used Michelin's PAX wheel and tire system, the Chiron sports conventional rims and tires — that is, if being rated to run 261 mph can be considered conventional. Wheel size is up an inch on each axle over the Veyron, and Michelin again is the tire of choice — hand-built Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2s, 285/30R20s up front and 355/25R21s in the back, with larger contact patches than before (Bugatti test driver Andy Wallace has said that Michelin is working on an uprated version for the attempt to reclaim the top-speed crown.) The brief calling for better handling includes a new ZF electronic steering rack and external reservoir Sachs shocks.
The cockpit is a handsome amalgam of functionality and luxury, formed from carbon fiber, fine leather and aluminum. Distinctive elements include the unique lighting strip that runs down the middle of the roof, echoing the exterior's two "C" shapes and the character line that bisects the top of the car and divides the rear window into separate panes; a steering wheel carved from a single chunk of aluminum; a large analog speedometer (300mph top end; 500km/h in Europe); three high-resolution screens; and a series of vertically placed knobs in the center stack that control various systems controls and readouts.
Driving the Chiron is best described as "There's nothing else like it." Imagine running faster than a prototype racer on Le Man's Mulsanne Straight but comforted by a/c and a terrific stereo. Test driver Andy Wallace reports that the Chiron is still accelerating strongly when the engine hits the limiter at 261mph. Most of us would be happy exploring the Chiron's top speed in "nanny mode," a mere 236mph. At that speed, says one Bugatti executive, "You can make an abrupt lane change...and the car reacts immediately. You feel your cheeks being pulled out when you do."
THE MOTORCAR OFFERED
Bugatti Chiron #795072 was 1 of the first 100 cars delivered by the factory to the United States. The menacing Nocturne body is spectacularly adorned with a two-tone Sprint Blue Effect livery on the lower body panels, signature line, horseshoe grill, the base of the wing mirrors, underside of the spoiler, and the wheels, which house massive black calipers. The combination is as stunning as it is unique. The cockpit is clad in full Beluga Black leather with silver stitching throughout.
With only the 365 delivery miles on the odometer, the hypercar is essentially brand new. The car was delivered to the official Bugatti dealer and has never left their care. All recommended services, including the first annual service which was performed on November 29th, 2018, have been carried out by the selling dealer, and the car remains under its factory 4-year Worldwide Warranty until September of 2021. To ensure that immaculate Nocturne and Sprint Blue paint remain in their factory delivered state, the majority of the car has been wrapped in a transparent protective film, commonly known as a clear bra. To further protect the vehicle for the elements, after the clear bra was installed, the entire body and the wheels were coated with Ceramic Pro - a multi-layerable, clear, liquid nano-ceramic coating acting as an additional clear coat. Although virtually impossible to detect, if the next owner desired, the clear bra and coating can very easily be removed at any time. Accompanying the car is the window sticker, build records, service records, photos of the vehicle being assembled at the factory, and the stainless steel flight case full of the factory supplied extras.
Its pristine beauty would be a high-performance exclamation mark to any collection, but this car deserves the ownership of a serious motoring enthusiast. There is no other automobile that so deftly combines such ferocious performance with the premium levels of comfort and driving ease. As Ferdinand Piëch once suggested, his Bugattis would be cars that can rule the autobahn by day and then attend the opera that night. This exquisitely optioned example in a stunning custom livery is the epitome of hypercar achievements. Its sale presents an incredible opportunity to acquire what many consider to be the ultimate road-going machine.