Not too long ago, we reported on how Wolfgang Durheimer, the former head of Bentley and Bugatti, would be leaving his role as CEO of these two companies under the VW branch and instead moving onto bigger and better things at Audi as part of a reshuffle to help reduce the average age of VW’s board members.
Just a couple of weeks later, we can confirm that an individual has been found to take over Durheimer’s old role as the boss of Bentley and Bugatti, with Wolfgang Schreiber recently being selected. This role change will put Schreiber into a vastly different role than his previous role in the VW group, as he’s currently the head of Volkswagen’s commercial vehicles unit, so it’s clear that the speed and luxury of Bentley and Bugatti will test him.
The changes will take effect on the 1st of September this year, meaning that Durheimer will remain at Bentley and Bugatti for the coming three months where Bugatti is said to be developing the new Galibier sedan, while Bentley is busy at work turning its EXP 9 F SUV concept into a production reality.
These changes co-inside with Volkswagen’s ambitious ‘Strategy 2018,’ where the group hopes to surpass General Motors and Toyota for the coveted title of ‘World’s largest automobile manufacturer’, leading the VW’s head Martin Winterkorn to say, “Our clear goal is to continue our successful course of recent years with great momentum and stability. I am convinced that now more than ever, the Volkswagen Group has the right people in the right positions to make our Strategy 2018 a success.”
Acceleration is one of the key components which create a supercar. Getting that perfect launch requires a combination of an extensive list of factors, namely finding a car with perfectly suited horsepower and torque figures. Finding a supercar with enough grip and a fast enough transmission to whip through the gears is also extremely important in getting off the line and continuing through to the quarter mile.
In the latest episode of Head2Head on the Motor Trend YouTube channel, they pitted the latest generation of carbon fiber constructed supercars against the all-conquering Bugatti Veyron over the quarter mile to see just how close the competition has come and if the Veyron can finally be knocked off its seemingly everlasting pedestal.
One could argue that Wolfgang Durheimer has the best job in the world as he runs two of the most prestigious and recognizable car companies in the world; Bentley and Bugatti. As we’re sure you know, both of these companies fall under the Volkswagen brand, but if Automotive News Europe is to be believed, changes are afoot within the mega-company.
Prior to being in charge of Bugatti and Bentley, Durheimer was Porsche’s development chief, and ANE believes that in a re-shuffle of Audi’s management board to reduce the age of its seven-board members, Durheimer will leave his current positions and take up the role as Audi’s development chief. He is said to be superseding Michael Dick, aged 60, in the role.
A selection of other positions throughout the Audi brand are expected to be replaced also, such as the brand’s sales chief and purchasing managers to again reduce the average age of the firm’s management board.
We’re not sure as to why Audi and Volkswagen are so keen to have young board members, as employees should be solely chosen on their abilities rather than their ages, but it’s likely Audi believes some of its current board members are losing their grasp on the ever-changing automotive industry, and perhaps believes bringing some youth to the team will help.
In saying that however, the new members aren’t exactly youthful as Durheimer is 53 and will be replacing a man just 7 years his senior, while Luca de Meo is 44 and expected to replace Audi’s sales chief, 60-year-old Peter Schwartzenbauer. As a result of this switch-up, the position as CEO of Bentley and Bugatti will be up for grabs but it’s unclear who’ll be promoted to that position in the near future.
Believe it or not, Bugatti actually had a rather long and roller-coaster-like lifespan before the Veyron was ever a glimmer in Volkswagen AG’s eyes. In fact, Bugatti outdates its ownership group by roughly 28 years, as VW was founded in 1937 and Bugatti in 1909. Unlike VW, though, Bugatti never fully recovered from WWII, and fizzled away into automotive has-been in the 1950s, despite a few ailed comebacks in the late-`50s and early `60s.
When Romano Artioli bought the rights to the Bugatti name, his first release under the newly acquired name was the extremely advanced 1991 Bugatti EB110 GT. Unfortunately, the EB110 GT, despite its advancements, never really took off, which was mostly attributed to the global recession at the time taking its toll on the automotive industry.
The EB110 GT lasted through the 1995 model year, but only a total of 84 of them were ever built within those five model years. In addition to the 84 completed models, there were 11 incomplete models that were purchased by B Engineering during Bugatti’s bankruptcy proceedings, which later became the basis for the Edonis sports car.
As you can see, the EB110 GT had a storied and tragically short life that was chock-full of unrealized potential, due to economic woes. Well, RM Auctions is giving you a chance to own a piece of Bugatti history by offering up a 1994 Bugatti EB110 GT in Monaco from May 11th to 12th, 2012.
How does this one technical marvel stand up to today’s supercars and is it really worth picking up with all of the supercars available?
Click past the jump for the answers in our complete review.
Our favorite Youtube user, Marchettino, has managed to delight us one more time by attending the 2012 edition of the Top Marques Monaco to film all of the amazing vehicles in attendance. We have to admit the list of supercars is quite impressive.
For those who don’t know, the Top Marques is an important supercar show that brings together some of the most expensive and exclusive supercars, hypercars, and tuning projects every year. It’s kind of like Christmas for us auto journalists, but without the big, jolly guy giving one of these supercars to us as a present. This kind of Christmas comes with huge prices and tremendous power backing it up.
Our favorite from the entire list of vehicles in attendance this year is the Koenigsegg Agera R, but the list is much, much longer.
Hit the jump for a full list of the cars featured in the video and pick out your favorite!
Rumors about an open-top version of the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 circulated for a long time now, but we were finally able to see the vehicle during its official launch at the Pebble Beach Lodge on August 16, 2008.
Called the Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport, the new Bugatti will be a roadster with a unique, removable roof. The open-top Grand Sport allows driver and passenger to feel even closer to the car’s breathtaking power. Those who consider the wind in their hair and the roar of a thoroughbred racing engine in their ears to be essential to true driving enjoyment will find their perfect motor car in this new Bugatti. Even with the top on the Grand Sport does not loose any of its fascination and conveys to the passenger a new exciting panoramic view.
Production began in Spring 2009.
Updated 01/27/2011: Bugatti came to the Qatar Motor Show for the first time ever and brought the 2009 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport along with them for the ride. It may be an old model, but it was the perfect occasion to reveal new images of the supercar, and to christen Bugatti’s first appearance. Hopefully they will grace us with their presence at future show! Check out the gallery to see the new pictures of the Grand Sport!
UPDATE 04/27/2012: Bugatti has unveiled a new video for their Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport showing the car in action with a closed roof. A second video presents the Blanc Noir version with an open roof. Enjoy!
In what could be one of the busiest Beijing Auto Shows in recent memory, the French automaker has decided that attending the show isn’t enough anymore. So they decided to steal it with the presentation of a one-off Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport that they have christened as "Wei Long."
Developed in collaboration with Konigliche Porzellan Manufaktur (KPM) Berlin, the Veyron Grand Sport Wei Long is Bugatti’s version of paying homage to the Year of the Dragon. Everybody’s doing it anyway, right?
As far as the car itself is concerned, the Wei Long comes equipped with unique porcelain dragon relief sections on both the exterior and interior. It’s similar to the set-up of the Veyron L’Or Blanc, except that this model was developed primarily for the deep pockets of the Chinese.
The exterior is finished in White Polish and greatly complements the Carmine Red interior. The headrests and hand-crafted silk floor mats have been embossed with the Chinese ’Dragon’ character to go with a special centerpiece with an elaborately detailed white porcelain dragon relief.
Just like all the one-off Veyron Grand Sport models in the world, the Wei Long is powered by an 8.0-liter W16 engine that develops a total of 1,001 horsepower and 1,250 Nm of torque. Those figures are good enough to post a 0-60 mph time of just 2.7 seconds with a top speed of 252 mph. And just like all those other one-off models, the Veyron Grand Sport isn’t for the weak of pockets.
For the privilege of owning this porcelain-dressed supercar, you’re going to need to shell out €1.58 million, which is a smudge over $2 million based on current exchange rates.
Learning everything there is to know about a supercar like Bugatti Veyron takes some time. Everything from the car’s design elements to the engine found under the hood its pretty impressive.
National Geographic is offering a pretty impressive full documentary that includes everything there is to know starting with the design and the development and up to interviews with the guys who made the car. We just hope this documentary will help you learn everything there is to know about one of the most powerful supercars in the world.
And, for those of you who still do not know, the Bugatti Veyron is powered by a 8.0-liter W16 engine that delivers an amazing 1001 HP and sprints the car from 0 to 60 mph in just 2.5 seconds, while top speed goes up to an impressive 253 mph.
Gemballa Racing’s McLaren MP4-12C GT3 had its racing baptismal at the German ADAC GT Masters Series and as a way of paying tribute to their very first racing machines, Gemballa decided to commission the help of the fine folks over at Cam Shaft for a special dress up on a Bugatti Veyron Sang Noir.
The unique wrap made by Cam Shaft gave the Veyron Sang Noir a pretty intense look, combining Gemballa’s noted blue color trim with glow-in-the-dark lightning graphics and matching brand logos plastered all around the car. The specially-wrapped Veyron Sang Noir doesn’t carry any performance modifications because the car only served the purpose of being a promo vehicle for the Gemballa’s new racing team.
Whether they have plans of building a Veyron race car in the future, though, is a totally different subject...
As a quick tangent to the guys over at Cam Shaft, you might recall some of their previous offerings, particularly the Lamborghini Koi Camouflage, which we showed you in November 2011.
Until recently, all we knew about Bugatti’s line-up for the 2012 Geneva Motor Show was the special edition Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse, but a shot taken of Bugatti’s stand has revealed that the company will also be unveiling a new four-door sedan model.
At this point, we’re unsure whether this will be a production version or just a concept, but we’re leaning more towards a concept version of the Veyron replacement, what used to be called the Galibier. With stricter emissions regulations on the horizon and an uninspiring design, the Galibier had to undergo some extreme modifications to make the mark. With all of those changes, a new concept seems to be in order.
Bugatti’s future sports sedan is rumored to use a new platform borrowed from the Audi A8. It is also believed to be powered by either a V12 or a V10 engine - a decision made in order to reduce both consumption and CO2 emissions.
Set to go into production in 2014, the new Bugatti sedan will more than likely be limited to 300 units and have a price tag similar to the Veyron. Of course, this is all dependent on whether or not the sedan hidden under that sheet is the replacement for the Veyron, in any kind of form. We’ll find out if we are right when the covers get ripped off tomorrow at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show!