Bugatti Bolide makes Le Mans debut


As you might know, Bugatti is building (yet to, actually) 40 units of the track-only Bolide hypercar, which debuted as a concept in fall 2020. Well, the latest news is that the development is in full swing and the prototype made its public debut for the first time recently at the Le Mans 24 Hours circuit (Le Mans, France) with Andy Wallace behind the wheel. Andy, who had a long Le Mans racing career, has been the Pilote Officiel for Bugatti since 2011.

But anyway, the prototype doesn’t look much different from the concept; I mean, it looks just as extreme with those X shapes, gaps, gapes and flaps everywhere. Behind the seats lies the Bugatti’s iconic quad turbo 8.0-litre W16 engine that originally was planned to output 1,361 kW (1,850 metric hp) and 1,850 Nm (1,364 lb-ft) of torque with 110-octane racing fuel. However, the production model is gonna offer 1,177 kW (1,600 metric hp) and 1,600 Nm (1,180 lb-ft) of torque with 98-octane petrol.

A track-focused hypercar means, of course, you need specially-developed, track-focused stopping power—which comes courtesy of Brembo. The Bolide’s 390 mm discs are gripped by 8-piston calipers at the front and 6-piston calipers at the rear. The production model is estimated to weigh ~1,450 kg (3,197 lbs) versus the concept’s 1,250 kg (2,756 lbs).

Bugatti-Bolide-Andy-WallaceBugatti’s Pilote Officiel Andy Wallace

“To take to the wheel of the Bolide at this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours was a very special moment; the energy from the crowd and how they connected to the car is something that will stay with me for a lifetime. The fact that it generates around twice its own weight in downforce at maximum speed, giving the car a very high level of grip and stability in high-speed corners is in its own right incredibly impressive. But to then match that prowess with Bugatti’s W16 engine, developing 1,600 PS, takes the Bolide to an entirely new level. The car is breathtaking in every sense,” said Andy.

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