Bugatti has forged a reputation for pushing the boundaries in engineering terms – and for going to the extremes in terms of powerplants. The current Bugatti Chiron – an astonishing car in every way – continues the trend for using large, turbo-charged internal combustion engines, in this case the amazing 8-litre V16 carried over from the Veyron, but the word is this will be the final hurrah for such an engine.
With the preference being for hybrid powerplants – witness the latest forays into this area by supercar makers such as McLaren, Porsche and even Ferrari – it is clear that the writing is definitely on the wall when it comes to the likes of Chiron’s engine, so will there be a successor? It seems things are changing, even at Bugatti.
No Official Word
While no official word has been forthcoming from Bugatti, Bugatti CEO Stefan Winkelmann is quoted in industry weekly Autocar thus: “Sooner or later, the legislation will force everybody to take radical steps. There will be no new 16-cylinder. This will be the last of its kind.” Sadly, we all know he’s right, as the world simply must find ways of making cars more efficient if they are to continue to rule our roads.
The question we now ask is this: what comes next? With no official line on the matter we can only speculate, but the likelihood is that Bugatti will follow others down the hybrid route. Perhaps a small electric motor could be used to power turbochargers for a lower capacity engine, or Bugatti may prefer to go full-hybrid as some others have done of late. With an R&D department that is unafraid to push the boundaries, the outcome could be something truly spectacular.
Bugatti remains at the forefront of the hypercar market n being as exclusive as it gets, and this is not going to change any time soon. The death of the mighty – in every sense of the word – V16 is something that we have all anticipated, so let’s wait and see what the next chapter brings.