Just shortly after the Veyron chapter ended, Bugatti went on to tease us with its successor, then touted to pack about 1,500 hp and 1,500 Nm of torque. Well, that’s quite the underestimation. Say hello to another record smashing machine – the Bugatti Chiron.
Named after the company’s legendary race driver, the Chiron developed from a new carbon fibre monocoque structure. Despite being as stiff as an LMP1 race car, the Chiron weighs close to 2,000 kilograms!
At its heart nestles the same 8.0-litre W16 engine, but it gets four larger turbochargers (one on each bank) to ram as much as 60,000 litres of air per minute. With the assistance of a lightweight carbon fibre intake tube, lighter crankshaft, dual-stage turbocharging and a titanium exhaust system, the Chiron is capable of liberating a colossal 1,500 hp at 6,700rpm with a ludicrous 1,600 Nm of torque! For comparison purposes, the Veyron had about 1,000 hp and 1,250 Nm of torque.
To compliment the Zeus-imbued engine, a gearbox with the strength of Hercules is required. Hence, Buggati fitted a seven-speed dual clutch gearbox – they claim it’s the largest, highest-performance clutch used on a passenger car – that sends all the twisting force to all four wheels.
You must be itching to know just how mad quick this Chiron is, aren’t you? Well, the new Bug sprints from 0 to 100 km/h in under 2.5 seconds; 0 to 200 km/h in less than 6.5 seconds and 0 to 298 km/h in under 13.6 seconds. Its top speed? An unbelievable, tyre-shredding 418 km/h – outperforming the Veyron by 11 km/h.
Braking power is available courtesy of carbon-ceramic brakes, while the integrated air-brakes at the back increases the Chiron’s drag coefficient from a slick 0.35 at top speed to 0.59.
New to the Chiron is the electro-mechanical steering system, which allows drivers to choose drive modes. Bugatti thinks monikers such as “Comfort”, “Sport” and “Race” are boring, hence, they cheekily rename the driving modes as Lift, Auto, Autobahn, Handling and Top Speed. The system proactively adjusts ride height, shock damping, steering feel, four-wheel drive system and active aids depending on modes selected.
The lift mode increases the Chiron’s height, crucial in manoeuvring over dreadful speed bumps. Auto mode needs no explanation; Autobahn mode optimises high-speed cruising whereas Handling Mode sharpens the car’s suspension. Now, the Chiron can only achieve its top speed when drive mode is flicked into Top Speed. This is activated via a special “speed key” only.
Just 500 units of the Chiron will ever be made – 50 more than the Veyron, and every unit will be built in Bugatti’s headquarters in Mosheim, France. It has a starting price of 2.4 million Euros (approx RM11 million), and production is expected to be scheduled across a period of eight years or 60 units per year.
As a parting advice to some 500 lucky rich customers of the Chiron, we highly hope that these customers will do Bugatti’s finest engineers some justice by driving this car instead of keeping it as a showpiece. That said, we have a funny feeling that Malaysia will see at least two Chirons along the way.