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Bugatti Test Driver Andy Wallace Explains How to Use Your Chiron

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Bugatti’s official test driver Andy Wallace has been with the company since 2011 and now explains how to use your Chiron including the drive modes, launch control, and speed key.
Bugatti Chiron Test Driver Andy Wallace Explains How To Drive The Chiron

If there is anyone that knows a thing or two about the Bugatti Chiron and is qualified to explain its nuances, it’s Bugatti’s official test driver Andy Wallace. Having been with the company since 2011 he’s already covered 150,000 km’s in the Chiron over the last few years, taking the car through its paces in the testing phase as well as demonstrating to clients the full extent of its capabilities.

Bugatti Test Driver Andy Wallace

Before joining Bugatti, Wallace spent the last 30 years of his career racing around tracks as a professional race driver, competing in both the 24 Hours of Le Mans and 24 Hours of Daytona a combined 21 times (taking home the winners trophy on four occasions) and driving the 12 Hours of Sebring 19 times (and winning twice).

Andy Wallace with Le Mans 2006 team mates
Andy Wallace with team mates at 24 Hours Le Mans 2006

When Bugatti was looking for an official test driver back in 2011, former race engineers remembered Andy Wallace as a reliable and precise driver.

 “Actually, when my racing career ended I thought that would be the end of me sitting in powerful cars. But then Bugatti came up with an offer I couldn’t refuse,” recalled Andy Wallace.  “I’ve been mad about cars since I was five years old. I watched my first race at the age of eight, and then I drove in races myself for 33 years. And now I have the opportunity to drive such fantastic cars, with all that incomparable acceleration incorporated into a true luxury car. As a racing driver, it goes without saying that I love speed and lateral forces.”

Nowadays, Wallace has by no means slowed down the pace – in fact he was the driver of the record-breaking Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+ which was the first series-production car to break the elusive 300 mph barrier – hitting a top speed of 304.773 mph (490.484 km/h).

Bugatti Test Driver Andy Wallace Drives The Record Breaking Chiron Sport 300+

So it seemed a no-brainer to have Andy Wallace share a few thoughts and tips around how to use the Chiron given his extensive experience in the car. Below are 5 short clips with a summarized version or reference purposes if you don’t have time to watch the videos.

Episode 1 – A Few Fast Facts About the Bugatti Chiron
  • The Chiron is powered by a large W16 8-liter engine capable of producing 1500hp. As it is so incredibly fast, it also needs massive brakes capable of bringing it to a halt safely
  •  The Chiron has four large turbochargers that take a while to spool up but the Chiron’s unique two-stage system activates by closing off two of the turbochargers at low RPM and forces 8 cylinders on each side through only two of the turbocharges – thus they spin up very quickly and you reach maximum boost with only two turbocharges. As the revs rise and you need more volume the other two are engaged
  • The Chiron needs 1000 liters of air a second for combustion
  • The forces acting on the wheel when the car is at top speed (420km/h) mean that the outer edge of the wheel is subjected to 3000x gravity, making a tiny valve cap that weighs 2.5grams is equivalent to 7.5kg at maximum speed
Episode 2 – The Interior of the Bugatti Chiron
  • Despite the staggering performance of the car it’s still designed to be comfortable and all materials used are high quality
  • The Chiron does not have a center screen but all of the information you would find there is included on the dashboard.
  • The aircon dials can display extra information regarding driving performance but need to be activated (and viewed preferably after driving for safety reasons)
Episode 3 – How to Use the Bugatti Chiron Drive Modes
  • There are three normal modes in the Bugatti Chiron plus the top speed mode
  • Bugatti Chiron EB Mode: Is the standard automatic driving mode that you can drive in all day long from 0 – 380 km/h but when you reach 180km/h it will automatically switch to the autobahn mode without you doing anything
  • Bugatti Chiron Autobahn Mode: The drive will drop the ride height and rake the car 20mm at the front and 1mm at the back. Suspension will be stiffer, steering program stiffer and the wing will deploy to 10 degrees. What that does is drop the center of gravity and gives you more downforce, more stability and sharpens the reaction of the controls
  • Bugatti Chiron Handling Mode: Even more downforce and more stability than the autobahn mode
Episode 4 – How to Use the Bugatti Chiron Launch Control
  • How to launch control in the Bugatti Chiron
  • Have the pressure on with your left foot on the brake and push the launch control button. Done.
Episode 5 – How to Use the Bugatti Chiron Speed Key
  • The Bugatti Chiron Speed Key lets you override the standard 380km/h top speed to achieve a maximum speed of 420km/h.
  • All you need to do is slot the key into the holder and turn the key. Once the Chiron has gone through a series of checks to make sure it is safe to drive 420km/h it will show a new top speed limit of 420km/h on the dash and you’re free to go.

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First Bugatti Divo Hypercars Ready For Delivery

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After two years of development at the Molsheim factory, the first Bugatti Divo hypercars are ready for delivery to their new owners.
Bugatti Divo Left Side Profile
First of the Bugatti Divo’s to be delivered to owners. Credit: Bugatti

It’s been two years since the Bugatti Divo was first revealed, and now the first Divo’s have been revealed ahead of delivery to their new owners.

Named after French pilot and Bugatti works racing driver Albert Divo who won six Grand Prix races and two Targa Florio’s, the limited edition Bugatti Divo takes a page out of the early era custom-bodied Bugatti’s and reimagines coachbuilding.

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim France
Only 40 Bugatti Divo’s will be produced. Credit: Bugatti

“The Divo starts a new era at Bugatti – the era of modern coachbuilding,” shared Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti. “With the Divo we have created a highly customised masterpiece of automotive craftsmanship that is a must-have for any Bugatti collection.”

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim Factory
An even sportier Bugatti than the Chiron. Credit: Bugatti

The difference in terms of today’s coachbuilding vehicles like the Divo is that in the past, master body-makers tailored different body shapes to a chassis – they hardly ever modified the technology. In contrast, with the new Divo development, designers and engineers have modified the technology and boosted the performance.

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim Front View
Bugatti have completed a challenging two years of development to finally reveal the first customer builds. Credit: Bugatti

“We had a host of liberties when we developed the Divo because we limited the top speed to 380 km/h” shared Frank Heyl, Bugatti’s Deputy Design Director. “As a result, we were able to generate more downforce and turn the Divo into a visually and technically independent model.”

An even sportier-looking model compared to the Chiron, the Divo has a host of additional air intakes including a NACA air duct on the roof to help cool the 8.0-liter W16 engine, ducts to cool the brakes and intakes on the bonnet to reduce the front surface of the vehicle and improve airflow. Likewise, a new front spoiler design creates greater downforce.

Divo’s rear is also distinguished by a unique 3D taillight design featuring 44 light-up finds that complement the narrow LED front headlights.

Bugatti Divo Silver Grey Rear View
Unique 3D taillight design of the Divo. Credit: Bugatti

Only 40 Bugatti Divo’s will be produced, with each of the already sold-out models priced at approx €5 million.

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim 2020
Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim 2020
Bugatti Divo Silver Grey Front View
Bugatti Divo French Grey Aerial View
Bugatti Divo Rear Left View French Grey
Bugatti Divo Rear Left View Black
Bugatti Divo Light Grey French Side View
Bugatti Divo Light Grey Front Side View
Bugatti Divo Light Grey French Rear View
Bugatti Divo Front View Trio
Bugatti Divo Front Side Profile
Bugatti Divo Front Left Light Grey View

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McLaren F1 Designer Reveals the Gordon Murray T.50 Supercar

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McLaren F1 designer Gordon Murray has officially revealed a new limited edition three-seater T.50 supercar said to have the world’s lightest and highest-revving 3.9-liter V12 engine in the world.
Gordon Murray T50 Hypercar Front Left View
The limited edition Gordon Murray Automotive T.50. Credit: GMA

Legendary car designer Gordon Murray is no stranger to extreme car design, with 20 years’ experience in Formula 1 and cars like the iconic McLaren F1 in his portfolio. Now he’s finally had the opportunity to apply all his industry knowledge to his own supercar, namely the T.50, of which only 100 vehicles will made.

Described by Gordon Murray as his “ultimate car design,” the T.50 is the 50th car design penned by himself over his 50-year career and is said to improve on his acclaimed McLaren F1 “in every conceivable way.”

Gordon Murray with T50 supercar
Gordon Murray with his “ultimate car design”. Credit: GMA

Scheduled to be built at Gordon Murray’s Automotive Production Center in Surrey, UK, the new T.50 has been created as “engineering art,” and like the McLaren F1, features dihedral doors and a three-seat design with the driver’s seat positioned centrally.

Gordon Murray T50 Left Profile View Doors Up
Dihedral doors and clean lines. Credit: GMA
Gordon Murray T50 Supercar Interior
Central positioned drivers seat for the best driving experience. Credit: GMA

“With the design of our T.50 supercar, we are taking the same focused approach that was applied to the design of the McLaren F1”, shared Gordon Murray. “Thanks to modern materials and 30 years of development, we have been able to deliver a far better all-round car in the T50, while setting its weight at just 986kg, a full 150kg lighter than the F1.”

Gordon Murray T50 Left Side Aerial View
The T.50 is almost 1/3 lighter than the average supercar. Credit: GMA

Created with a carbon-fiber monocoque body, the T.50 weighs just 2,174 pounds / 986kgs (which is around 1/3 less than the average supercar) and is powered by a 100% bespoke 3.9-liter V12 engine that is the worlds lightest and highest-revving V12 engine to date.
Producing 663PS @ 11,500rpm and 467Nm of torque @ 9,000rpm, the Cosworth developed engine also features dry-sump oiling to prevent oil starvation in hard cornering, a feature that will be appreciated given the T.50’s power and grip.

Gordon Murray T50 Supercar Work
Gordon Murray explaining the details of the T.50. Credit: GMA

With a central focus on light-weight design, Gordon Murray’s Formula 1 experience shows in the streamlined design of the T.50 supercar with every gram accounted for and all unneeded vents, wings and flaps removed to create what Gordon Murray describes as the most advanced aerodynamics ever seen on a car.

“Next-level aerodynamics allow us to avoid the current supercar trend for exaggerated wings, vents, and ducts. I was determined to create a clean and pure shape that would remain timeless, ensuring the T50 will still look fresh in 30 years.”

The proportions, size, and styling are also something Gordon Murray is 100% happy with, noting that the vehicle can carry three passengers, luggage, and the V12 engine comfortably while keeping under 1000kgs.

A stand-out feature of the T.50 is undoubtedly the giant 15.7-inch central fan at the rear of the vehicle, designed to achieve unmatched aerodynamic performance combined with the underbody aerodynamics and two dynamic rear spoilers.

Gordon Murray T50 Rear Tail
Not so secret aerodynamic weapon – the rear central fan. Credit: GMA
Gordon Murray T50 Left Rear View
Only 100 Gordon Murray T.50’s will be built. Credit: GMA

First used on Murray’s F1 design, the fan-assisted aerodynamic system improves on conventional ground-effect systems by actively managing both underbody and overbody airflow.

This boundary layer control ensures the most effective interaction of airflow on top of, and below the car, balancing drag and downforce at all speeds.

Gordon Murray T50 Rear Aerial View Doors Up

Through the application of two automatic and four driver-selected aero modes, the T.50 is capable of increasing downforce by 50%, reducing drag by 12.5%, and cutting the braking distance by 10m from 150mph.

T50 Drive Modes

Auto Mode: is the car’s default setting. In this mode, the T.50 operates like an ordinary supercar with passive ground-effect downforce.

Braking Mode: automatically deploys the rear spoilers to their maximum (+45 degree) angle when high levels of deceleration are required. The fan also operates simultaneously at high speed while the diffuser valves open. This function can double downforce, enhancing stability and grip, and shortening the 150mph-to-0mph braking distance by a full 10 meters.
If sudden deceleration is required, and when aerodynamics could influence stopping distance, Braking Mode overrides all other modes.

High Downforce Mode: is driver selectable and delivers enhanced traction – in this mode, the rear spoilers deploy at +10 degrees, diffuser valves open, and the fan spools up to increase downforce by 50%.

Streamline mode: cuts drag by 12.5% and boosts straight-line speed while also reducing fuel consumption and downforce. In this mode, the rear spoilers deploy to -10 degrees reducing base suction and drag. The diffuser valves close partially, stalling the diffuser and reducing downforce, which saves wheel travel to make the car more comfortable and efficient. It also sets the fan to operate at high speed, drawing air from the top deck to minimize drag while extending the trailing wake of the car, creating a ‘virtual longtail’ and producing 15kg of thrust.

V-Max Boost: is the most extreme T.50 mode. It uses the characteristics of Streamline Mode, then uses the car’s 48-volt integrated starter-generator to drive the fan – freeing up power to the driveshaft. Combined with the ram-air induction, this boosts power to 700PS for short bursts of acceleration.

Test Mode: operates when the car is stationary and is driver-selected. The fan spools up to its maximum 7,000rpm, the twin rear spoilers cycle through their full range of movement and the diffuser ducts / valves progressively open and close before returning to their rest position.

Gordon Murray T50 Gear Interior

As a limited edition model, each customer will be given first viewing of the vehicle design and will be invited for a seat, steering wheel, and pedals fitting session to set their car up to fit them perfectly. Throughout the build, clients will be kept informed and will have the option of visiting their vehicle. Once completed, owners will be offered tailored experiences and have access to a service network and “flying technician.”

Gordon Murray T50 Hypercar Front Left Doors Up

Only 100 Gordon Murray T.50’s will be built at a starting price of £2.36m (before taxes) with production scheduled for January 2022.

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Limited Edition Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Revealed

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Limited to only 40 vehicles, the Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 is a track-only car with the most powerful naturally aspirated V12 engine produced by Lamborghini.
Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side View

First announced earlier this year, the new track-only limited edition Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 has been revealed and has been developed in collaboration with Lamborghini Squadra Corse (development) and Lamborghini Centro Stile (styling).

Limited to only 40 units, the Essenza SCV12 has been fitted with the most powerful naturally aspirated V12 engine ever developed by Lamborghini and borrows technological solutions from the racing track for the ultimate driver’s experience.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side Front View

“Essenza SCV12 represents the purest track driving experience that our brand can offer, an engineering feat that highlights the inextricable link between our cars and the asphalt of the track,” says Automobili Lamborghini CEO Stefano Domenicali. “Lamborghini is a brand constantly looking to the future and searching for new challenges, but we never forget our roots and who we are: Essenza SCV12 is the perfect combination of our unconventional spirit as a super sports car manufacturer and our true passion for motorsport.”

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Front View

Created exclusively for the track, the Essenza SCV12 delivers over 830hp, has higher downforce levels than a GT3 car, and an extreme power-to-weight ratio of 1.66kg/hp thanks to a newly developed carbon fiber monocoque chassis that does not require an internal roll cage. It is also the first GT car developed that adheres to all FIA prototype safety rules.

Maurizio Reggiani, Chief Technical Officer of Automobili Lamborghini, remarked: “Essenza SCV12 is the ultimate expression of the V12 naturally aspirated engine, the symbol of our brand since 1963. It is a project in which we combined the pursuit of engineering perfection with refined aerodynamics, futuristic design, and innovative solutions such as the carbon monocoque without internal roll-cage. The result is an engaging and uncompromising car, born to race and to showcase on the track the characteristics that have made Lamborghini famous worldwide, guaranteeing unique and special emotions for both the driver and onlookers.”

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side Rear View

Aerodynamically, the Lamborghini Essenza SCV12’s front hood features a double air intake like the Huracán track cars that works to separate the hot airflow from the radiator and the cold air going to the roof scoop. At the rear, a large adjustable double-profile rear wing works to increase efficiency and downforce.

The design has also been a collaborative effort with the Lamborghini Centro Stile team with Mitja Borkert, Head of Lamborghini Centro Stile noting, “I was excited about this project from the very start, because it would allow us to create a car that was different but at the same time unmistakably Lamborghini, extreme but stylistically very clean, as a real racing car should be. With the Essenza SCV12 we pay tribute to both our racing past and the present: the large rear wing, side fins and front splitter are elements taken from the Huracán Super Trofeo EVO and GT3 EVO. This car is the perfect combination of our tradition and what we imagine for the future.”

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Y Interior Console

Continuing Lamborghini’s hexagonal geometry throughout the design, the Essenza SCV12 also has the “Y” stylistic feature repeated throughout the livery in the cockpit and an asymmetrical carbon “Y” racing instrument panel and dashboard. The multifunction steering wheel has also been inspired by F1 single-seater steering wheels allowing the driver to keep their hands on the wheel at all times.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Y Interior Cockpit

Only 40 track-only Lamborghini Essenza SCV12’s will be produced. Owners will be part of a unique program that includes an athletic training program and technical support similar to the official Squadra Corse drivers. As part of the program, owners will be given access to some of the most iconic racetracks around the world. Each car will also have a personalized garage plus dedicated services, including webcams, to allow customers to monitor their vehicles 24 hours a day using an app.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side Left View

The official track calendar will start in 2021 with “arrive and drive” events held at numerous FIA Grade 1 homologated circuits and assistance will be provided by the Squadra Corse technical staff with the support of Emanuele Pirro, five-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and an excellent tutor for the customer-drivers; and Marco Mapelli, Lamborghini Squadra Corse Factory Driver.

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