Limited-edition Bugatti Chiron Sport bridges the gap between cars and planes
Bugatti is highlighting the little-known link between some of its earliest race cars and aviation with a limited-edition variant from the Chiron Sport named Les Légendes du Ciel. Even though it doesn’t gain wings and an air-cooled radial engine, the model features several design tweaks made to catch the eye of vintage car and airplane buffs alike.
“Many successful Bugatti racing drivers, for example Albert Divo, Robert Benoist and Bartolomeo 'Meo' Costantini, flew for the French Air Force. Therefore, it is almost an obligation for all of us today to pay tribute to the legends of that some time and dedicate a unique edition to them,” explained company boss Stephan Winkelmann inside a statement.
Starting having a Chiron Sport, stylists painted your body inside a specific shade called Gris Serpent (meaning “snake gray” in French) that’s inspired through the colour of a few of the planes that flew throughout the 1920s. For contrast, they added a white stripe that stretches from the grille towards the rear wing, plus they painted the leading part of each rocket panel blue, red and white. Exposed carbon fiber accents add a finishing touch towards the overall design.
Look closely at the front end, and you’ll notice another edition-specific touch. Instead of mesh, the grille’s insert is made from laser-cut strips of aluminum arranged to resemble a number of planes flying inside a formation.
Brown leather upholstery dominates the cabin, and aluminum trim pieces create another visual outcomes of the Les Légendes du Ciel and planes built on the century ago. Each door panel gains a hand-sketched image showing a Bugatti Type 13 racing against a Nieuport 17 biplane. Released in 1910, the Type 13 was the very first car to put on the Bugatti name. Launched in 1916, the 17 was a single-seater praised for speed and reliability.
Power for that Les Légendes du Ciel comes from a quad-turbocharged 8.0-liter W16 engine, which produces 1,500 horsepower and 1,180 pound-feet of torque. It spins the 4 wheels using a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission linked to steering wheel-mounted shift paddles, also it sends the Chiron to a top speed that’s electronically restricted to 261 mph. Quite simply, it’s faster than a few of the planes its smart tribute to.
Bugatti will make 20 units of the Chiron Sport Les Légendes du Ciel, and pricing starts at 2.88 million euros, a figure that represents $3.41 million in the current conversion rate. It sounds like build slots continue to be available.
Although he dedicated his career to creating cars, company founder Ettore Bugatti (1881-1947) also dabbled in the realm of aviation. He developed plane engines in the middle of the 1910s, according to Bugatti, and that he developed a complete aircraft in 1937, though he didn’t get to test drive it because of the outbreak of World War II.
Winkelmann has an unusual and little-known link to aviation, too: he served two years within the German army like a paratrooper. He currently runs Bugatti, but he what food was in the head of Lamborghini between 2005 and 2021. There, his fascination with planes helped shape cars such as the Lamborghini Egoista, a one-off model built-in 2021 with a plane-like canopy along with a single-seater cockpit reminiscent of a contemporary fighter jet.