When you start to talk about Bugattis you have to suspend any connection to reality, well, most people do. The numbers are simply staggering. In the Chiron, which has spawned several derivatives, you have a car that has 16 cylinders displacing 8,0 litres and force-fed by four turbochargers. Peak power is upwards of 1 100 kW and top speeds are near on 500 km/h. It seems the company doesn’t rest on its laurels as it was recently testing Bugattis at the Nurburgring Nordschleife.
Not only are Bugattis pretty rare, but they also cost a fortune, so the fleet that was taken to Germany was the among the most expensive ever to share track time at the Nurburgring, valued at just under €20m (approximately R336m by today’s exchange rate). That fleet consists of just four cars: the Centodieci, Divo, Chiron Pur Sport and the Chiron Super Sport 300+ (you can read about each of these Chiron variants by clicking here).
The Nurburgring’s north loop is well known as a test venue for automakers. In the European summer several OEMs are seen out and about in the Nurburg area as well as on the famous racetrack. The Nordschleife 20,8 km long circuit, with 33 left-hand and 40 right-hand corners, has up to 17 per cent gradients and an altitude difference of 300 metres. Bugatti uses the track to hone suspension settings to differentiate the variants within the Chiron family.
In their own words
“We want to achieve the best possible chassis setup for our customers, so we perform test-drives under extreme conditions as well as in day-to-day situations,” says Lars Fischer, head of chassis testing and setup at Bugatti. And Bugatti does not make any distinction between the Chiron and a few-off of just ten vehicles like the Centodieci. What matters to the engineers during the test-drives is that the Centodieci likewise drives extremely precisely, quickly, and perfectly in all situations.”
“We put the same degree of development and testing into a few-off like the Centodieci as we do with the Chiron,” explains Jachin Schwalbe, head of chassis development at Bugatti. “In other words, following extensive simulation and intensive testing on test benches and at proving grounds, test-drives are performed on circuits and in road traffic in order to further optimise the handling characteristics and driving behavior. The Chiron Super Sport 300+ naturally has to likewise deliver a very high-performance drive on narrow tracks,” explains Schwalbe.