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The debut of a Bugatti hypercar is always an Event, so rarely are new models shown in Molsheim. This premiere was especially anticipated, because the French brand moved away from the Volkswagen concern and came under the wing of the Croatian inventor Mate Rimac, and electric hypercars entered the arena. The Bugatti Tourbillon did not disappoint: unique engineering solutions, design wow effects, a small circulation and a long wait for the start of deliveries – everything is according to the canons.

Five years ago, Bugatti announced that it would no longer set speed records: having conquered the 300 mph (483 km/h) mark in a production car, the company focused on other areas. The new super-hybrid Tourbillon cannot be called “the very best” – in terms of acceleration dynamics it is inferior to the Rimac Nevera, and in maximum speed – to the SSC Tuatara.

However, Mate Rimac made it clear that buyers of hypercars are not interested in dry numbers: they say, there is no doubt about the speed of the same Rimac Nevera, and out of a circulation of 150 copies, only 50 cars were sold in three years. Therefore, the main feature of the Bugatti Tourbillon was engineering solutions, for example, a naturally aspirated V16 engine!

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Cadillac managed to bring such an engine to mass production almost 90 years ago, although more or less successful ideas to produce supercars, sedans and even SUVs with V16 continued until the early 2000s. The developer of the V16 for the Bugatti Tourbillon is the British company Cosworth. The working volume is 8.3 liters, this is a very loud “riding” engine that can be revved up to 9000 rpm.

The naturally aspirated engine itself produces 1,000 horsepower and 900 Nm, which is not enough by the standards of modern hypercars. Therefore, Bugatti relied on a hybrid system with three electric motors: one is built into the 8-speed preselective “robot”, the other two are located on the front axle (each drives one wheel). The hybrid’s peak output is 1,800 horsepower, which allows the Bugatti Tourbillon to accelerate from zero to 100 km/h in two seconds.

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The maximum speed of the new hypercar is 445 km/h, that is, the result of the base Chiron is 5 km/h. However, progress in acceleration dynamics is obvious: from zero to 200 km/h the new product accelerates in less than five seconds (-1.1 s), from zero to 300 km/h in less than 10 seconds (-3.1 s), and up to 400 km /h can accelerate in less than 25 seconds (-7.6 s). The exact characteristics will be announced after certification.

The outstanding dynamics of the Bugatti Tourbillon have been achieved without compromising the environment, that is, there will be no restrictions on driving into city centers. The thing is that the designers managed to integrate a T-shaped 800-volt battery with a capacity of 24.8 kilowatt-hours into the carbon monocoque. The range without activating the internal combustion engine is at least 60 kilometers. The automaker kept silent about the charging speed.

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The length of the Bugatti Tourbillon is 127 millimeters longer than the Chiron, but the height has been reduced by 23 millimeters. The superhybrid’s curb weight turned out to be less than that of its predecessor! The difference is a symbolic one kilogram (1995 versus 1996 kilograms), but given the large battery, this result is impressive.

Savings were achieved due to the abandonment of the heavy W16 turbo engine (the new naturally aspirated engine weighs only 252 kilograms), the absence of mechanical all-wheel drive, a simplified cooling system and an innovative suspension – forged aluminum levers, “printed” on a 3D printer, are 45% lighter than the original steel ones. As before, composite materials, carbon and titanium are widely used in the design.

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The exterior design of the Bugatti Tourbillon is in the spirit of its predecessor, but there are no common details, because the power structure based on the monocoque has been developed anew. We managed to abandon the classic swing doors in favor of a design with “butterfly wings” a la McLaren. The rear design is also reminiscent of British supercars: the clever profile of the lights seems to be inspired by the P1 model.

However, the signature Bugatti features remained: the oval sidewalls and the horseshoe-shaped radiator grille were carefully preserved. The original solution is a single vertical windshield wiper in the spirit of prototypes from endurance racing. Also noteworthy is the gigantic diffuser, even by hypercar standards, and the retractable spoiler.

The interior of the Bugatti Tourbillon seems to challenge the industry. The task was set to create a “timeless” salon that would not become outdated in 10 or 100 years, so they turned their attention… to watch manufacturers! No digital dashboards: all indicators, including battery charge, are displayed by arrows. In front of the driver are three round displays with exposed gears that explain the model name.

Of course, the hypercar does not have a tourbillon: the new product does not need a mechanism that compensates for the influence of gravity on the accuracy of the watch. The symbolism is that mechanical watches remain relevant to this day, although more accurate electronic analogues have long appeared. Likewise, the Bugatti Tourbillon personifies the demand for monstrous gasoline engines in the era of electric vehicles.

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The instrument panel is made by Swiss craftsmen, and each cluster is a work of art, consisting of 600 titanium parts and precious stones. Accuracy – from five to 50 microns. Another design masterpiece is the steering wheel with “floating” paddles. It has two spokes at the top and bottom, while the hub is fixed, and all information for the driver is clearly readable, regardless of the position of the wheels.

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Nothing is said about steering wheel adjustments, but it is known that the driver’s seat is rigidly fixed, and only the position of the pedals can be adjusted. The touch keys are not visible at all in most official photographs, although this is disingenuous: there is still a small touchscreen with support for Apple CarPlay, which pulls out from the front panel if necessary. For example, information from the rear view camera is displayed on it when reverse is engaged.

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Bugatti points out that the Tourbillon is more spacious than its predecessor and more comfortable on long trips. There is even an audio system, although without the usual speakers: the interior panels are made in such a way as to “excite” the internal surfaces of the hypercar, like the strings of a musical instrument. In theory, the solution allows you to save weight without sacrificing sound quality.

It will not be possible to test the Bugatti Tourbillon anytime soon: the first customers will receive their cars only in 2026. The coupe’s production run is limited to 250 units, with a starting price of 3.8 million euros. For comparison, the base Chiron cost 2.4 million euros, and the circulation was 500 copies (excluding “related” models with a different body)./m

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