1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495

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Lot 238
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports
Registration no. SV 8984 Chassis no. 40557 Engine no. 495

£ 200,000 - 250,000
US$ 270,000 - 340,000
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports
Registration no. SV 8984
Chassis no. 40557
Engine no. 495
Original coachwork
• Matching numbers throughout
• Current ownership for 20 years
• Enthusiastically campaigned internationally
• Eligible for the Mille Miglia

Footnotes

  • The Bugatti Type 40 offered for sale here is very well known to the Bugatti Owners' Club having taken part in numerous events with the current long-term enthusiast owners, both at home and overseas. It is a highly original and correct example and is supplied with a full historical report from Bugatti authorities David Sewell and Mark Morris. Sporting and yet practical, the Type 40 is eligible for numerous historic events including perhaps the most internationally renowned of them all: the Mille Miglia.

    Introduced in 1926, the Type 40 Bugatti succeeded the Brescia types, being built on a longer wheelbase and equipped with a more powerful engine. Virtually identical to that used in the Type 37 Grand Prix car, the latter was a four-cylinder unit displacing 1,496cc, which incorporated an all-plain-bearing bottom end with five mains. A single overhead camshaft operated three valves per cylinder (two inlets, one exhaust) and the Type 40's 45bhp or thereabouts maximum power output was transmitted to the rear wheels via a separate four-speed gearbox. An estimated 787 Type 40s had been made when production ceased in May 1931, with a further 32 Type 40As completed with the 1,627cc engine by the end of that year. It is estimated that fewer than 200 survive today.

    A well-documented and researched motorcar, '40557' comes with the aforementioned comprehensive report penned by Messrs Sewell and Morris. Gratifyingly, the ownership history is virtually complete apart from the usual gap during the war years and immediately thereafter. According to the report, the Bugatti was originally collected directly from the factory at Molsheim by the first owner/agent Dr Momain, and was purchased for Garage Gergovia of Clemont-Ferrand, of which Dr Momain was a proprietor.

    It appears that '40557' was supplied in rolling chassis form and clothed with a two-seater Torpedo-style sports body with disappearing hood: the same coachwork it carries today. It is not entirely clear whether the body is by Charles Duval of Paris or possibly Maleyre of Bordeaux. Duval worked closely with the neighbouring Amilcar factory, and there are elements of the coachwork on '40557' that reflect Duval's styling, and hence the car carries Duval coachbuilder's plates. However, there are also design elements that point toward Malayre, particularly some of the latter's coachwork produced for BNC. Both firms are roughly equidistant from Clemont-Ferrand, so one cannot assume that one would have been more convenient than the other. The speculation regarding which carrossier bodied the car is included in an appendix to the historical report and makes for interesting reading. Regardless of which coachbuilder can claim the work, what is clear is that the coachwork fitted to '40557' is the original.

    According to the aforementioned report: "In respect of its mechanical components it (40557) retains all of its original major Molsheim components: chassis frame, engine, front and rear axles and gearbox. The correlation of numbers is 'matching' throughout as 495 and the frame is 514, so close in production sequence that it has always been one complete car."
    A listing of the known owners is contained within the report and can be supplied upon request. The car spent all of its life in France and from 1932 onwards remained in and around Paris. During 1986, work was carried out on the car by the French Bugatti specialist Jean Novo, and a photograph on file shows '40557' in his workshop.

    The Type 40 was purchased by the current British owners some 20 years ago from the outskirts of Paris. Since then '40557' has enjoyed regular maintenance, mostly carried out by Bugatti specialists Gentry Restorations of Worminghall, Buckinghamshire. The engine was completely rebuilt to original specification between 2003 and 2005 with a refresh of the top end carried out in 2015. The gearbox bearings have been replaced and further general maintenance carried out where necessary, including king-pins, bushes, etc.

    The current owners have greatly enjoyed owning '40557', competing with it on numerous national and international rallies. These have included the International Bugatti Meetings in Europe; the Great Australian Bugatti Rally in 2014; a Bugatti rally in New Zealand; and the 2016 La Festa Mille Miglia in Japan. Much loved by its owners and the Bugatti Owners' Club, this highly original and well-travelled Type 40 tourer is offered for sale only to make way for another Bugatti project. As well as the aforementioned historical report, the comprehensive history file also contains FIVA papers that require renewal with any change of ownership. '40557' is a fine and correct example of Bugatti's Type 40 and ready to be enjoyed by the next custodians on the many international historic events for which it is eligible, including the Mille Miglia.

Contacts
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
1928 Bugatti Type 40 Torpedo Sports   Chassis no. 40557  Engine no. 495
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