The 21st century has brought us many fantastic supercars, but when it comes to power, speed and luxury there’s one to rule them all. The Bugatti, is a historic brand revived by Volkswagen, it is undoubtedly the most exclusive automaker in the world. For 10 years it had just one model, the Veyron, sold at a price well over 1 million dollars. Now the Veyron’ has a successor called the Bugatti Chiron.
The Bugatti Chiron which was first unveiled at the Geneva auto show in March 1st, 2016 is the most powerful production street car the world has ever seen. It is a mid-engine, two-seat sports car, designed and developed in Germany by the Volkswagen Group as the successor to the Bugatti Veyron.
“It is part of human nature to cross boundaries and set new records,” Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S. President Wolfgang Dürheimer said in a statement. “This striving is also our driving force at Bugatti. The Chiron is the result of our efforts to make the best even better.”
The Chiron was named after Louis Chiron, a legendary racing driver for Bugatti, who won virtually all the major grands prix for the brand in the 1920s and 1930s. Bugatti had a tough job to replace the incredible Veyron, but it’s finally done it with the new Chiron. Just like its predecessor, the new car is surprisingly powerful, faster and more expensive, a worthy successor to carry on the Bugatti breed the Chiron will go on sale in the Autumn, with a massive price tag of $2.6 million.
Bugatti will make just 500 of the first Chiron series, and around 170 of the Chiron have already been sold. The company began giving private presentations of the car to “select customers” last fall, and will deliver the new cars this fall.
Having set so many records with the Veyron, Bugatti had no option but to up the ante and develop a super sports car that is faster, more powerful and quicker than its predecessor. Thankfully, the Chiron is up for it.
Bugatti made the Chiron speed possible by enlarging each of the four turbos. They are four turbos in all, but two are designed to be always on, while the other two are electrically actuated, spun up when the driver wants more acceleration. And introducing an innovative new two-stage spooling system, The Chiron is mostly about straight-line performance. It uses a new version of its predecessor’s engine- an upgraded quad-turbo, 8-liter, W-16 engine.
A titanium exhaust also features, as do six enormous catalytic converters. The Chiron uses the highest-performance clutch ever fitted to a passenger car. Carbon silicon carbide brakes with eight pistons rein all that power in, as does the air-brake that protrudes from the rear haunches.
Bugatti doesn’t look to be kidding when it says this is the fastest, most powerful production super sports car in the world. The Bugatti Chiron puts out 1,500 horsepower and has a top speed which is limited by default to 236mph; to reach the higher speed of 261mph (420km/h) a special “Speed Key” must be inserted. The Chiron can hit 100km/h (62mph) in “less than” 2.5 seconds and can accelerate to 200km/h in less than 6.5 seconds and to 300km/h in under 13.6 seconds. The Chiron has five drive modes: Lift, Auto, Autobahn, Handling and Top Speed; the first four are activated via a dial on the steering wheel, while the last is activated via the “Speed Key”.
With power comes heat, but heat is not a high performance engine’s friend. Bugatti takes care of this with an improved cooling system that circulates 60,000 liters of air and 800 liters of water through the engine in one minute.
The car’s analogue speedometer goes all the way around to 500km/h. Bugatti says it opted for an analogue dial rather than a digital display so that passers-by can see the numbers go all the way to 500, and not just a blank computer panel when the car is switched off.
Inside the Chiron is just as exquisite as the outside with more improved elements in the instrument cluster, the center console, and sound system. The latter makes this what Bugatti is calling “the world’s fastest concert hall. There’s not even an inch of plastic inside, with every surface being either carbon-fiber, aluminum, or covered in fine leather.
Like any supercar, the Chiron comes with a state-of-the-art sound system, speaker tweeters made out of diamonds. Featuring a one-carat diamond membrane on each of the four tweeters, for what’s supposed to be unsurpassed precision and aural fidelity. The tweeters are the only features to contain precious materials; the “Bugatti” emblem is made from enamel and solid silver. A cooled glove box rounds out the Chiron’s fancy interior.
While this Bugatti may put many expensive limousines to shame in terms of convenience and luxury features, it won’t be able to match a full-size sedan for roominess. However, Bugatti engineers made a few improvements, managing to obtain an extra 12 mm (0.47 inches) of headroom. It might not sound like much, but this will allow taller drivers to fit inside and enable customers to drive the car with a helmet.
The overall design is rather simple, but the organic lines give it a modern feel. While the exterior is still based on the Veyron’s, the interior tells a different story.
The Chiron looks like an evolution of the Veyron, refining its styling and emphasizing Bugatti design language. While the redesign might not appear to be significant at first glance, Bugatti’s designers made several changes to turn the Veyron into the Chiron.
The front hood no longer extends into the bumper and features a more angular V shape that gives the nose a more aggressive appearance. All the features of the front end have been designed to make the Chiron look as wide as possible. LED headlights up the front make up what the company calls an “eight-eye face,” while an active wing on the rear serves as an air brake. 20-inch wheels on front and 21-inch wheels at the rear make up a staggered set, with eight titanium brake pistons up front and six on the rears.
When viewed from the side, the Chiron is indeed a significant departure from the Veyron. The first thing that catches the eye is the sweeping, C-shaped curve that defines the profile. The Veyron’s massive, center-mounted outlet has been replaced by a twin-pipe exhaust, while the diffuser seems taken off a full-fledged race car. The engine hood was also reshaped and Bugatti ditched the Veyron’s humps in favor of a more aerodynamic, flying buttress design.
It is too early to conclude that the Chiron would be as successful as the Veyron and get a lot of attention from both the media and gearheads. Like the Veyron, the Chiron will lack any racing ability at the track and be more of a garage queen rather than a supercar you can hoon around. Very few cars become legends the day they are launch, obviously the Bugatti Chiron would be one of them.