Hypercar maker Bugatti has taken its £2.5million Chrion road model and turned it into the ultimate racer that can hit 311mph in just 20 seconds.
The track-only model has been named the Bolide – which Bugatti says is French for ‘racing car’, though also [worryingly] translates to ‘fireball’ in Italian – and is powered by the quad-turbo W16-cylinder engine used in its current warp-speed road car.
With the powerplant wound right up, weight shaved to a minimum and racing-car bodywork, the Bolide has a whopping 1,825bhp and can lap the Le Mans circuit faster than the current crop of endurance racers, according to the manufacturer.
Bugatti’s boss described the driving sensation as ‘like riding on a cannonball’.
Bonkers Bolide: Bugatti’s latest creation is like a Chiron hypercar on steroids, taking an already monumental machine and turning it into an eight-cylinder track weapon
The Chiron’s powerplant has been heavily tweaked for the track weapon, as you can see in the video footage of the extreme Bolide in the clip below.
While the unit fitted to the track-ready model is the same eight litres in capacity as the road car, it gets four new turbochargers and an air-to-air intercooler to keep the engine temperature at optimum levels.
The impact is a 346bhp increase in power over the ‘standard’ motor – a rise of more than a fifth – which is the equivalent of adding an Audi RS3 hot hatch to the equation.
The Bolide’s uprated motor also has 247bhp more than the Chiron Super Sport 300, which for a short period was unofficially classed as the fastest road car on the planet until it was dethroned by the SSC Tuatara earlier this month with a new record of 316mph.
The word Bolide in French means ‘racing car’. However, translated from Italian it also means ‘fireball’
Bugatti has shaved a third of the weight of the Chiron to create the Bolide. All the extra wings on the bodywork are needed to prevent it from taking off
The Bolide’s uprated motor also has 247bhp more than the Chiron Super Sport 300 , which for a short period was unofficially classed as the fastest road car on the planet
With so much power on tap, the acceleration claims from Bugatti are phenomenal.
From a standing start it will hit 62mph in 2.2 seconds. To 124mph it takes just 4.4 seconds, while 186 comes up in 7.4 seconds.
Keep your foot planted and it will knock on the door of 249mph in 12.1 seconds after starting from zero, and 311mph can be achieved 20.2 seconds after it the car was at a complete standstill.
While the unit fitted to the Bolide is the same eight litres in capacity as the road car, it gets four new turbochargers and an air-to-air intercooler to keep the engine temperature at optimum levels
The Bolide can accelerate from 0-62mph in 2.2 seconds. It takes just 7.4 seconds to reach 186mph from a standing start
It takes just over 20 seconds to got from zero to 311mph, and a total of 33.6 seconds to manage that feat and get back to zero
Think those figures are mind-boggling? It can go from zero to 311mph and back to zero in just 33.6 seconds, which is less time than the average time it takes to write and post a tweet.
Bugatti claims it has lapped the Nurburgring in 5 minutes and 32 seconds. The current record for a road-legal car is the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ, which completed the infamous circuit in 6 minutes and 45 seconds.
Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti, says it has ‘brute exclusivity, impresses above all with high performance, low weight, and a driving experience in a whole new dimension’ and described driving the Bolide as ‘like riding on a cannonball’.
While the tuned engine is responsible for much of this staggering performance, it’s also down to a 33-per cent weight saving from the bulk of the Chiron road vehicle.
Without fluids, it tips the scales at 1,240kg. Fully fuelled, the kerb weight will be in the region of 1,340kg, which is on par with a Ford Fiesta
The rear wing and diffuser combined to generate over 1,800kg of downforce when the car is driven at a speed of 200mph. That’s like having a family-sized saloon car parked on the rear deck
The quad exhaust pipes and X-shaped light cluster, combined with the huge wing and diffuser, give the Bolide an incredible rear-view stance
The Bolide gets a carbon chassis and body, while the fastenings are all made from aerospace-developed titanium alloy.
Without fluids, it tips the scales at 1,240kg. Fully fuelled, the kerb weight will be in the region of 1,340kg, which is on par with a Ford Fiesta.
You can see the Chiron’s DNA in the shape at the front, though it gets huge cut-out panels and X-shaped headlight units
Bugatti says it can lap the Le Mans 24 hours circuit faster than the endurance race cars that took part in the event behind closed doors earlier this year
In total, the Bugatti Bolide’s aero generates 800kg of downforce at 200mph at the front alone
To keep the flyweight racer grounded with all that grunt, the bodywork is a mass of fins, wings and splitters, all designed to suck the Bolide into the tarmac at speed.
In total, it generates 800kg of downforce at 200mph at the front, and the massive rear spoiler creates 1,800kg at the rear – the equivalent of having a family-size saloon car parked on the backside.
The built car is running on 400mm wide slick tyres and the wheels have aero covers with turbine blades to cool the brakes.
A quad exhaust, x-shaped rear light setup – which matches the style of the front headlamps – and one of the biggest diffusers ever put onto a car only add to the extreme looks.
Inside, it’s a stripped-down racer, though there plenty of expensive Alcantara material strewn across the cabin
A driver sits in minimally padded carbon-fibre bucket seats while the sawn-down steering wheel has a cluster of buttons and switches
Bugatti hasn’t yet confirmed a price or production availability for the car, which is currently seen as a design exercise only
Inside, it’s a stripped-down racer, with minimally padded carbon-fibre bucket seats, a steering wheel strewn in buttons and switches and a single digital instrument cluster to give the driver relevant information at a glace, including speed, gear selection, revs and lap intervals.
While it might be minimal, it’s definitely not bare, with lots of Alcantara cladding parts of the carbon interior that aren’t exposed – including a massive tunnel that divides the driver’s seat from a passenger.
Bugatti says it shares its DNA with the brand’s Type 35 racer from the roaring ’20s, picturing the Bolide next to the vintage machine as well as a one of the EB110 works endurance racers from the 1990s.
Bolide shares DNA with Bugatti’s 1920s Type 35 racer (right) and the EB110 works endurance cars from the 1990s (left)
Is the Bolide one of the best-looking cars you’ve ever seen? Let us know in the comments section below
The Bolide produces 346bhp more than the ‘standard’ Chiron. That’s a power rise of more than a fifth – which is the equivalent of adding an Audi RS3 hot hatch to the equation
‘The Bolide is the ultimate answer to the question of what if Bugatti built a track-focused hyper sports car that met the FIA’s safety requirements and designed around the W16 powertrain with the minimum body structure and unbelievable performance data,’ explained Stefan Ellrott, member of the Board of Management of Bugatti and Head of Technical Development.
‘The result: the smallest possible shell for a breathtaking performance vehicle that allows the W16 to truly come into its own.’
He added: All of Bugatti’s expertise has been condensed into the Bugatti Bolide. It is therefore an innovative information source for future technologies. The Bolide is thus more than just an intellectual exercise.’
There’s been no mention of price as yet, or how many could go into production.
Until this month, Bugatti had – unofficially – held the record for having the fastest road car on the planet – the Chiron 300 Super Sport. It was dethroned by the SSC Taruana at the start of October
Menacing: Don’t expect to see any official race teams running what is likely to be an outrageously expensive Bolide as a competition car any time soon
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