1:18 scale model, 'Car #001' presented in dark red and black
The idea was to design a sports car which would explore the limits of the technically possible, and which would, in every respect, be commited to the extreme. The idea was to design a car which would uncompromisingly unite the passion of the designer, the skill of the engineer, absolute luxury and racing technology. The idea was to interpret the car as a work of art. The idea was to build a Bugatti.
The Bugatti EB16.4 Veyron was named after the last man to win the Le Mans 24hr race in a Bugatti, Pierre Veyron. Bugatti wanted to build a street car that would have the world's most powerful engine with possibly a 4-digit horsepower figure and be the world's fastest car at over 400km/h (248mph).
The result is a sleek, exciting sports car promising enormous power from an all-aluminium 7993cc W16 engine mounted longitudinally ahead of the rear axle on a seperate aluminium subframe and running four KKK turbo chargers producing 987bhp @ 6000rpm. The top speed is estimated to be 252mph, although the owners wanting to test this for themselves will have to contact the factory who will dispatch a mechanic to check the car over, fit high-speed tyres and remove the electronic speed limiter especially for the purpose.
0-186 mph should take just fourteen seconds. The Veyron's 7-speed sequential gearbox is unique in that it boasts a dual clutch transmission whereby one clutch controls gears one, three, five and seven, whilst the other controls gears two, four and six, the result being a constant surge of power when accelerating. Special run-flat capability Michelin PAX tyres in 265 front and 365 rear, the largest tyres ever fitted to a production car, are mounted on 20.5" (520mm) diameter 12-spoke wheels.