Bugatti to Succeed Veyron with 1500hp Supercar

Bugatti to Succeed Veyron with 1500hp Supercar

Bugatti, the maker of exotic supercars such as the 1,200-horsepower Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse, is considering a model that some might feel contradicts the ethos of the extravagant brand: a hybrid.

The French manufacturer, owned by Volkswagen, has developed the blueprint for a 2015 follow-up model to the 0.99 million pounds limited-series Veyron that may sell out this year, two sources at VW group with knowledge of the matter said.

The two-door model may rely on a 1,500-horsepower, 16-cylinder engine and will probably be limited to about 450 cars, the same as the expiring Veyron, the sources told Reuters on Wednesday.

Bugatti’s new chief executive Wolfgang Duerheimer, a former R&D boss at Audi and Porsche who returned to the French brand on June 1, favours a hybrid version of the brand’s next model, the sources said on condition they not be identified because the matter is confidential.

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Ultra-luxury nameplates such as Ferrari, McLaren and Porsche are embracing electric powertrains after being on the cutting edge for years in upgrading chassis and engine electronics while striving to trim CO2 emissions.

Hybrid systems used in McLaren’s P1 model and Porsche’s 918 Spyder work to boost performance and fuel economy.

“Moving to hybrid propulsion seems like a logical next step” for supercar-makers, said Stefan Bratzel, head of the Centre of Automotive Management near Cologne. “By curbing emissions and boosting performance, they can justify building more of these cars.”

The new model will beat the 268 miles top speed of Bugatti’s Veyron Super Sport, which lost the title of the world’s fastest production car in February to the Hennessey Venom GT, sources said.

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“The new model will not be less exciting than the Veyron,” a spokeswoman for Bugatti said, without being more specific. “Our customers have certain expectations.”

Wolfsburg-based VW acquired the Bugatti brand in 1998 along with Lamborghini and Bentley Motors to create a stable of high-end carmakers. VW doesn’t break out Bugatti’s earnings in quarterly or annual reporting, but a company source says the brand has been loss-making for years on high development costs for the Veyron.

Under VW’s reign, the super-luxury brand, which traces its roots back to Italian-born car designer Ettore Bugatti, started production of the Veyron series in 2005. Some 430 of the 450 planned models have been sold, the spokeswoman said.

Bugatti to Succeed Veyron with 1500hp Supercar

Source: Reuters

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Porsche Launches Green Hybrid Supercar

Production-ready Porsche 918 Spyder

Porsche has unveiled a 72 miles per gallon hybrid supercar at Frankfurt’s International Auto Show. The car will be built in a run of no more than 918 examples, in left-hand drive only, over the next 18 months.

The 918 Spyder is powered by a plug-in petrol-electric hybrid drivetrain based around a mid-mounted, naturally aspirated 4.6-litre V8 petrol engine that produces 599bhp at 8700rpm. It is supported by two electric motors, one sited up front within the front axle and another at the rear, developing a combined 282bhp at 6500rpm.

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Based around a carbonfibre monocoque, the Spyder comes clothed in composite plastic body panels and uses a bespoke chassis fashioned from aluminium, magnesium and titanium.This combination has helped Porsche achieve a kerb weight of 1634kg for the 918 Spyder in its lightest form, despite the inherent complexity and bulk of its petrol-electric hybrid powertrain and battery pack.

Removable roof panels that stow away in the nose section allow the new Porsche to be used either as a coupé or a roadster, while an optional Weissach performance package brings a series of aerodynamic tweaks. These include winglets to the bumpers for added downforce, as well as a number of lightweight components, including magnesium wheels, that combined to reduce the kerb weight by 35kg over the standard model.

Production-ready Porsche 918 Spyder

With a top speed of 198 miles per hour and the ability to go from 0 to 62 miles per hour in under three second, this new supercar does more miles to the gallon than the Toyota Prius hybrid. However, at £540,000 compared to the Prius’s £22,000, you would have to drive 1.85 million miles for the Porsche to work out as better value.

The 918 Spyder hybrid is proof that even those with the biggest buying power are still looking for either fuel efficiency or green credentials…or is it? Supercar manufacturers are being forced to adapt by the prospect of new European emissions regulations, which are designed to crack down on air pollution and make cars cheaper to run.

We’d love to know what you think – are Porsche buyers more concerned with fuel efficiency or green credentials?

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