This is not another Bugatti Chiron derivative. There’s certainly a striking resemblance to the old W-16-powered hypercar, but this a completely new beast. The monocoque is new. The suspension is new. And the hybrid V-16 powertrain is most definitely new. Say hello to Bugatti’s next-generation 1,800-horsepower flagship, the Tourbillon.

The previous reports about the engine were true—this is an 8.3-liter monster that revs to 9,500 RPM and makes 1,000 horsepower without any turbochargers. Cosworth helped develop the naturally aspirated beast, which weighs just 555 pounds despite being significantly larger than the W-16 it replaces. There’s also 664 pound-feet of torque, but of greater interest here is the other half of the Tourbillon’s powertrain.

Bugatti Tourbillon

We’re talking about the hybrid assistance. A front e-axle carries two electric motors, with a third motor positioned at the back to help spin the rear wheels. A 25 kWh centrally-mounted battery pack supplies power, adding 800 hp to the mix. The combined output is 1,800 hp, and provided the bespoke Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires have enough grip, the Tourbillon will reach 62 mph (100 km/h) in just 2.0 seconds.

But that’s not a proper metric to convey the Tourbillon’s true performance. Under full throttle, 124 mph is reached in around 5.0 seconds. 186 mph arrives in a mere 10 seconds. The top speed of 236 mph happens in less than 25 seconds, unless you have the special Speed Key installed. When activated, the Tourbillon keeps its ginormous rear wing hunkered down while the speed climbs all the way to 276 mph.

The latest Bugatti doesn’t lose anything in becoming a hybrid, except a little bit of weight. Yes, despite a battery pack and electric motors, Bugatti says the Tourbillon is lighter than the Chiron. It can also cruise around town without using that snazzy V-16 engine. Actually, it can go beyond town with an estimated EV range of 37 miles. There’s no mention of speed on electric power, and Bugatti isn’t ready to talk about charging times. But it uses an 800-volt system, and lest we forget, Mate Rimac is steering Bugatti these days. And he knows a thing or two about electric performance.

Bugatti Tourbillon

Watch connoisseurs will recognize tourbillon as mechanical bits used in high-quality timepieces to increase accuracy. Bugatti sees its Tourbillon as a big, timeless work of mechanical perfection. That becomes readily apparent when you open the electrically actuated dihedral doors to see the stunning analog interior. Three large dials affixed to the steering wheel display everything from speed to engine revs, fuel quantity, engine temperature, and more. There isn’t a screen in sight.

The gauges were designed and crafted by Switch watchmakers, and they’re permanently fixed to the steering column so they remain stationary as you turn the wheel. Meanwhile in the center console, you’ll find banks of aluminum switches, rotary dials, and a single crystal lever that starts the V-16. The purpose of all this is to give the Tourbillon a timeless look, but there is a hidden digital screen at the top of the center console. On command, it will rotate up and give the driver access to Apple CarPlay, among other things.

Bugatti Tourbillon Interior
Bugatti Tourbillon Interior

As for the design, there’s no mistaking it for a Bugatti. The Chiron-esque exterior features a special diffuser that begins just behind the passenger cabin, virtually hidden from view. Vents under the headlights help funnel air to the large side intakes. The horseshoe grille feeds air to radiators while also augmenting downforce. The active rear wing can deploy upward to serve as an airbrake. And it all rides on a completely new multi-link suspension that is 45 percent lighter compared to the Chiron’s bones.

“The development of the Bugatti Tourbillon was guided at every step by the 115 years of Bugatti history and the words of Ettore Bugatti himself,” said Bugatti CEO Mate Rimac. “His mantras ‘if comparable it is no longer Bugatti’ and ‘nothing is too beautiful’ were a guiding path for me personally, as well as the design and engineering teams looking to create the next exciting era in the Bugatti hyper sports car story.”

Bugatti Tourbillon

Though we’re seeing the car today, that era won’t begin until 2026 when the first of 250 production cars will be delivered. Right now, the Tourbillon is currently in its testing phase, so start saving those pennies. You’ll need every single one, because the Tourbillon’s starting price is 3.6 million Euros (around $3.9 million at current exchange rates).

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Last Update: June 20, 2024

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