Looking for Bugatti’s roots is like looking for many other exotic manufacturers’ humble beginnings. It all started on the track. Etorre Bugatti entered his first race in 1899 at the ripe young age of 18. His fascination with racing led him to study engineering and take a job in an engine manufacturing plant in Alsace. He would later use that knowledge develop a lightweight racer in his basement. That car was to become the first Bugatti.
The Bugatti family would experience several tragedies over the course of Ettore’s life, including the death of his brother in an auto accident at age 30. When Ettore himself died, it seemed the company was doomed. It was Bugatti’s racing success that led several manufacturers to take interest in the company.
In the past century, Bugatti has continued to change hands. The company was most recently purchased by Volkswagen in 1998, riding the supercar wave established by the Bugatti EB110. Today Bugatti has just one production model: the Veyron 16.4. The car uses a 16-cylinder engine to reach the fastest top speed of any serial produced automobile at 252 mph. Of course, with a price tag over a million bucks and just 300 production models this car defines exclusivity.
Sites worth visiting
The Bugatti website exudes the Bugatti experience. The page loads with a video of a mansion, and progresses to shots of the Veyron screaming down streets and over deserts. This car is even out of reach for people who can afford the finer things in life. This is THE auto experience. Read about the company history, view pictures of every Bugatti model, and dream about driving that mammoth.
Bugatti on Wikipedia
The Bugatti page on Wikipedia takes an abbreviated look at the changes in Bugatti ownership and the models as a result. They have a nice treatment of the Bugatti racing legacy that the racing historian in you is sure to appreciate.
Around the Blogosphere
Bugatti on Autoblog
It’s hard to believe there could be so much news about a carmaker that’s only producing a couple hundred models of the world’s fastest car. The guys at Autoblog don’t miss a thing, even on Bugatti. They have some very cool videos of the Veyron racing anything from the M3 to a fighter jet.
Bugatti Veyron Blog
The name says it all. This page is devoted to finding the latest photos, videos, and news on the Bugatti supercar. The blog reads a lot like a RSS feed, with links to original news stories at other locations. Still, the videos are impressive and this might be the closest you’ll find yourself to driving the 16.4.
American Bugatti Club
Founded in 1960, this is a club for Bugatti owners to meet up and discuss the incredible cars they own. They keep a current calendar of events and include a quarterly magazine with membership to the club. You don’t have to own a Bugatti to join, but you will have to prove your loyalty to the marque.
While the page is a little rough around the edges, it is a powerhouse of the latest Bugatti information. They stay up-to-date with Bugatti news, events, and have a very nice photo gallery. Browse with patience – it may take a bit to find what you’re after.
Veyron-powered Arnage in the Works
Egmcartech has confirmed reports of a Veyron-powered Bentley Arnage prototype. The Veyron engine produces over 1,000 horses, more than double the ponies under the hood of today’s Arnage.
Veyron vs. Typhoon
After wiping the floor with a pair of Cessna’s, the UK’s Royal Air Force asked that the Veyron be pitted against a real competitor, the Eurofighter Typhoon. Germancarblog.com has the full story and some incredible video footage.
Pur Sang Sold Out
As exclusive as the Veyron is, the VW heads devised a model that could be even further from reach. The Veyron Pur Sang shows the Veyron body in its purest form – without paint. Only five models have the exposed aluminum and carbon fiber body, and they were all purchased within 24 hours of release.