Bugatti has successfully modified one of its Chiron’s to hit a max of 304.77mph (490.47kmh) at VW’s Ehra-Lessien test facility.
The verified run means that the hypercar has beaten the likes of Hennessey and Koenigsegg to be the first manufacturer to break the 300mph barrier.
It’s important to know that it wasn’t any normal Chiron which helped it achieve this feat. This particular model complete with go-faster stripes was 25cm longer than the stock model. They also reduced the ride height in order to reduce drag, making it look stuck to the road beneath. The rear wing, an airbrake and a passenger seat were also removed in a bid to surpass the record-breaking speed.
A new engine was also stuck in the ridiculously fast vehicle. According to Top Gear, a 8.0-litre, quad-turbo W16 unit nicknamed Thor was added to power this beast. It was able to deliver 1,578bhp, representing an increase of around 100bhp from the original Chiron.
Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti said he was incredibly proud of his company’s achievement:
Bugatti has once again shown what it’s capable of. With this new record of the Chiron we enter again uncharted territory. Never before has a series manufacturer reached this high speed… Our goal was to be the first manufacturer ever to reach the magic 300mph mark. We have now achieved this – making ourselves, the entire team and myself, incredibly proud.
The incredible achievement is a great PR opportunity for the manufacturer, proving Bugatti are still able to build the fastest cars in the world. Their test run was so impressive that the Chiron wasn’t far off hitting 500kmh.
At the wheel of the hypercar was British racing driver, Andy Wallace, who won the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1988 with Jaguar. He is the current official Bugatti test driver and gets the pleasure of driving their vehicles at high speeds of over 400kmh.
The Ehra-Lessien high-speed track is a 21-kilometre three-lane highway where Volkswagen Group vehicles are regularly tested for speed and safety. It was at this venue that the Chiron convincingly beat Koenigsegg’s previous best by 26.9mph.
Because of the success of this test run, Autocar believes that the mechanical changes that were made to this Chiron will be incorporated into a limited-edition model. What better way to celebrate reaching record-breaking speeds than letting millionaire punters achieve the same fate!
Congratulations to Bugatti, although it will be up to their competitors to set the bar even higher! I give it 12 months before a competitor catches up!
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Matt Weston is a lover of electric cars, artificial intelligence and space. From Cornwall, he’s a UCLan graduate that still dreams of being a Formula One driver in the very near future. Previously work includes reporting for regional newspapers and freelance video for the International Business Times.