Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse: The world’s fastest convertible gets more power

Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse frontBugatti only makes one car, but it’s quite a machine. In top-spec SS form, the Veyron is the fastest production car in the world. Every Veyron is powered by an 8.0-liter, 16-cylinder engine with four turbochargers, making 1,001 hp in the (discontinued) standard Veyron, coupled to all-wheel-drive. There is even a convertible.

As a drop-top version of the world’s fastest car, the Veyron Grand Sport was pretty extreme already. Nonetheless, Bugatti has decided to give it a little more power; enter the Grand Sport Vitesse.

“Vitesse” means speed in Bugatti’s native French, so the company tweaked the convertible’s W16, giving it a total of 1,200 horsepower, with 1,106 pound feet of torque. To make this extra power, Bugatti says the turbochargers and intercoolers were enlarged. The chassis was also reinforced to handle all that torque.

The Vitesse borrows some pieces from the record-breaking SS, including its more aerodynamic front fascia and tuned suspension. Is Bugatti trying to build a convertible SS, so buyers can set world speed records while drying their hair?

Bugatti would not reveal the Vitesse’s top speed, but it will probably be higher than the current Grand Sport. That car is limited to 217 mph, making it the world’s fastest production convertible. With an extra 200 hp, there is no reason why Bugatti wouldn’t raise that limit. The SS’ record stands at 268 mph, but that would be difficult to reach with an open roof; the convertible just isn’t as aerodynamic as the coupe. That’s why Lockheed does not make a convertible F-22.

Bugattis are all about extreme numbers, especially when it comes to sticker price. A normal Grand Sport costs about $2.2 million; an SS costs roughly $3.3 million. Since the Vitesse is a step up from a normal Grand Sport, but not quite as fast as an SS, it stands to reason that its price will be somewhere between those numbers.

The Veyron has been around since 2005, but it never ceases to amaze. It shows what can happen when all of a company’s resources (especially those of the mighty Volkswagen group) are committed to a single objective. As a world record holder, it’s not a good idea to be complacent, so Bugatti has continued to incrementally improve the Veyron to keep it on top. The Grand Sport Vitesse might seem like a marketing ploy, a special edition to attract customers high on exclusivity. However, in the Veyron’s rarefied world, even incremental improvements count as forward progress. It’s not like anyone else has built a convertible as fast as this before.

The Vitesse will make its public debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March, with production set to begin shortly after that.


At 503 mph, Turbinator II is the world’s fastest wheel-driven vehicle

The Turbinator II is a four-wheel drive streamliner powered by a 5,000-horsepower helicopter engine, and it just achieved 503.332 mph at the Bonneville Salt Flats. That's an unofficial record for a wheel-driven car.

Room to roam: The supersized X7 is unlike any BMW you’ve ever seen

The first-ever BMW X7 is the 7 Series of the SUV world in terms of size, price, and image. Its supersized body has enough room for seven adult passengers and enough tech to impress even the most cutting-edge buyers.

Hold on to your butts: These are the fastest cars in the world

Think your car is unbelievably fast? Think again. From wind-cheating bodywork to powerful engines, these cars were designed for the singular pursuit of speed (and it shows).

Watch this 1,000-horsepower Jeep Trackhawk scorch supercars in the quarter mile

The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is pretty quick out of the box, but Texas tuner Hennessey Performance Engineering never settles for stock. Its HPE1200 Trackhawk boasts over 1,000 horsepower.

'4WD' or 'AWD'? Which setup is right for you?

Although four-wheel drive (4WD) and all-wheel drive (AWD) are related, they are actually quite different in how they operate. Here, we talk about the fundamental differences between the two systems, and what it means for you as a driver.

Google Maps now shows EV owners the way to the nearest charging station

Google Maps now lets electric-car owners find the nearest charging station with ease. It's also added data on the number and types of ports available, charging speeds, and notes on the business where the station is located.
Product Review

Audi's new A8 is so sophisticated and serene, it practically deletes potholes

The 2019 Audi A8’s outline looks promising: Level 3 autonomous driving capability, haptic-feedback infotainment screens, rear-wheel steering, Matrix LED headlights and OLED taillights, plus a predictive suspension.

Heads up, George Jetson: Terrafugia starts taking orders for its flying car

The Terrafugia Transition flying car will go on sale next year, roughly a decade after the first prototype rolled out of its hangar. Terrafugia promises improvements, including a hybrid powertrain, to make up for the long wait.

Lyft has a new fixed-price subscription plan for frequent passengers

Lyft wants you to save money by using rideshare services instead of owning a car. The new Lyft All-Access Plan monthly rideshare trip subscription includes 30 rides a month with a small discount for additional trips.

Could the next Mazda3 boast a fuel-saving breakthrough in engine tech?

Mazda released a teaser video that likely previews the next Mazda3. Expected to make its global debut at the L.A. auto show, the next 3 will wear a more curvaceous design and offer one of the most advanced engines in the automotive…

Workhorse takes on diesel with lighter, cheaper NGEN-1000 electric delivery van

Ohio-based Workhorse Group claims its new NGEN-1000 electric delivery van costs the same as a conventional diesel van and can haul a similar amount of cargo. A lower curb weight makes this possible.

Forget transponders with Peasy’s nationwide pay-as-you-go toll service

Verra Mobility launched Peasy, a consumer highway and bridge toll payment service. Designed to be less hassle than managing traditional transponder or toll tag accounts, Peasy pays tolls as they are levied across most of the U.S.

Just 10 people will get to put this limited-edition Audi R8 in their garages

The 2018 Audi R8 V10 Plus Competition makes use of Audi's motor sports experience to turn up the performance dial. Decreased weight and increased aerodynamic downforce make this R8 a track monster.

Porsche’s all-electric Taycan sedan will cost less than a Panamera

Porsche's Mission E concept won't change much as it transitions to a production model named Taycan that's scheduled to arrive in 2019. That means the sedan will keep the sleek design and its 800-volt charging system.