Bugatti is the other name for breaking speed records over the years3 min read . Updated: 16 May 2021, 12:33 PM IST
Bugatti Bolide could become the first car to reach a top speed of 500 kmph.
Back in 2019, French high-performance luxury car manufacturer, Bugatti did what was once thought impossible. Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+ recorded 490 kmph on its speedometer smashing the previous record. With the Chiron Super Sport 300+, Bugatti became the first car manufacturer to break the 480 kmph speed barrier, once again showcasing the brand's outstanding performance.
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Despite the Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+'s 490 kmph speed record is an unprecedented one, it was not the first time a Bugatti car broke and set a new speed record. The French auto manufacturer has been known for its automotive engineering for more than 110 years, with Ettore Bugatti as its inventive designer.
Setting 100 kmph mark
The journey of setting the speed records started back in 1903 and the tradition is still continuing. The De Dietrich 60 CV Course Bugatti Type 5 was the car to achieve the 100 kmph speed record. Type 5 was designed by Ettore Bugatti himself.
The Bugatti Type 5 was powered by a 12.85-litre four-cylinder engine. It was capable of reaching a top speed of 120 kmph. Interestingly, only two units of the Bugatti Type 5 were built.
Breaking 120 kmph mark
Just the next year, in 1904, Bugatti took the game one notch up by breaking its previous 100 kmph record-setting new 120 kmph benchmark with the Type 6. The power source for this model was a 7.5-liter, four-cylinder engine that was capable of reaching a top speed of more than 120 kmph. This model was used to compete in many races.
Reaching 250 kmph
After setting the speed record of 120 kmph, Bugatti took two years to set the next speed record of 130 kmph in 1906 with Type 7. Since then it set sped records one by one, setting the benchmark even higher each time. In 1929, Bugatti launched racing model Type 45, which took the speed record of 250 kmph.
The Bugatti Type 45 was powered by a 3.8-litre engine that was capable of churning out 270 PS of power at 5,000 rpm. In between, the automaker used models like Type 9C, Type 13, Type 35, etc. The Bugatti Type 45 was used for short-distance and hill races.
Next step 300 kmph
In 1929 only, Ettore Bugatti was trying to break the 300 kmph barrier. Despite making the technical and theoretical preparations, Bugatti couldn't achieve the model required for this speed record due to budget restrictions. In 1987, Romano Artioli took up the challenge and started building EB110 with a 3.5-litre V12 mid-engine, which broke the 300 kmph speed mark in 1992. It reached 342 kmph.
A year later, Bugatti built EB110SS, which was capable of kicking out 610 PS of power. It reached 350 kmph reaching to 351 kmph.
From Veyron to Chiron
If Bugatti EB110SS took the game to 350+ kmph zone, then Veyron took the challenge to take the number to 400 kmph mark. It took Bugatti more than 15 years, till 2005 to reach the 400 kmph mark with Veyron, which was the first hyper sports car in the 2000s to achieve the feat.
The Bugatti Veyron draws energy from an 8.0-litre engine that churns out 1,001 PS of power. It was considered the fastest series-production sports car in the world. There were multiple variants of Bugatti Veyron to achieve even higher speed marks. These include the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport that recorded a top speed of 431.072 kmph in 2010. After that, in 2013 open-top Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse became the world’s fastest road-approved roadster clocking 408.84 kmph.
Bugatti Chiron, the 490+ kmph monster
In 2019, Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+ raised the bar even higher. The hyper sports car clocked a speed of 490.484 kmph. It is powered by an 8.0-liter W16 engine with a 1,600 PS power output. It became the first series-production car to break the 490 kmph mark.
Paving way for 500 kmph
In October 2020, Bugatti launched the Bolide hyper sports car, an extreme track-oriented model, powered by an 8.0-liter W16 engine with a 1,850 PS power output. Bolide is capable of producing a simulated maximum speed of 500 kmph, while still delivering maximum handling and the highest agility. Bolide could become the first Bugatti that can possibly break 500 kmph speed barrier.