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.

Cars

Can electric motors finally make three-wheeled cars great?

Every few years, someone tries to sell a three-wheeled vehicle to Americans. Historically, it hasn’t gone very well. We’ve got our suspicions about why people don’t buy trikes, and they boil down to this: a trike is just not a real…
Product Review

With the roomy and speedy 2019 Continental, you can take Lincoln seriously again

With the 2019 Continental, Lincoln is on a mission to rekindle ties with its glamorous past. The firm's flagship sedan is short on tech, but it's comfortable, spacious, and smooth -- just like a Lincoln should be.
Cars

If Batman became a race car driver, he’d hit the track in the Vuhl 05RR

Mexican sports car Vuhl revealed the hardcore 05RR, a roadster that blurs the line between a track car and a street-legal car. The 05RR stands out with a design that looks right out of a video game and a 385-horsepower engine.
Cars

Volkswagen is planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car will head to the Nürburgring for a lap-record attempt. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car with the I.D. R.
Cars

Someone just paid supercar money for the very first 2020 Toyota Supra

The 2020 Toyota Supra made its long-awaited debut at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show. The resurrected sports car, famous for a role in The Fast and the Furious, goes on sale in the U.S. this summer.
Outdoors

Is Uber planning to put its self-driving tech into bikes and scooters?

Uber reportedly has its eye on building autonomous electric bikes and scooters that ride to a user when summoned by an app. The technology could also be used to make its two-wheelers safer with obstacle avoidance systems.
Product Review

The new Ram 1500 blends capability and convenience better than the rest

The Ram isn’t the most powerful, spacious, or affordable of the light-duty, full-size pickup herd, but a modestly equipped version walks all over rivals in terms of ride quality, technology, and cabin comfort.
Cars

Lincoln’s stately, limited-edition flagship sedan sells out in a month

The 1961 Lincoln Continental became a design icon thanks to center-opening "coach doors" (also known as "suicide doors"). Lincoln is bringing those doors back for a special edition of the 2019 Continental.
Home Theater

Report: Spotify preparing to launch $100 in-car streaming device

According to a report, people familiar with Spotify's plans say the company is readying a dedicated in-car music streamer that will cost $100. It will work with any Bluetooth-enabled audio system and can be controlled by voice.
Cars

Tesla given go-ahead to start deliveries of Model 3 to Europe

Tesla has been given the green light to start deliveries of its Model 3 electric sedan to Europe, giving it the chance to compete more effectively with the likes of BMW, Audi, and Mercedes-Benz in the region's premium car market.
Cars

Royal fans bid big money as Prince Philip ‘car crash parts’ hit eBay

A couple of days after a car crash that involved the 97-year-old husband of Queen Elizabeth II, debris apparently from the scene of the accident showed up on eBay. And people wanted to buy it.
Emerging Tech

Elon Musk offers to help dig CERN’s new particle collider tunnel

CERN plans to put the Large Hadron Collider to shame with its proposed much larger Future Circular Collider -- and Elon Musk wants to help. Because, you know, he's not busy enough.
Cars

Hyundai has created the ‘world’s first multi-collision airbag system’

Around 30 percent of car accidents involve multiple collisions, a reality that prompted Hyundai to develop what it claims is the world's first airbag capable of deploying in a multi-impact traffic accident.
Cars

Polestar gives us an early look at its Android-based infotainment system

Volvo sister company Polestar has released a teaser image to give us our first look at the 2, its second model. Polestar tells us the 2 will arrive as a four-door fastback with a 400-hp electric powertrain and about 300 miles of range.