Bugatti Chiron Super Sport
Given the Bugatti Chiron’s extreme performance and high levels of luxury and exclusivity, some would say this supercar has already achieved the pinnacle of the sports car mountain. However, a boutique automotive brand such as Bugatti would never be content to rest on the laurels of a car such as the 1500-horsepower Chiron, so today the company introduces a new variant — the Chiron Super Sport.
Top Speed and Luxury
“With the Chiron Super Sport, we are following our long-standing tradition of combining top speed with absolute luxury,” said President of Bugatti Stephan Winkelmann. “The Chiron Super Sport stands for increased comfort and elegance coupled with even greater performance and higher speeds. With this new creation, we established another distinct personality within the Chiron family,” Winkelmann noted.
At the heart of the new Chiron Super Sport beats Bugatti’s 8.0-liter quad turbo W16 engine; however, the powerplant has been “thoroughly overhauled” to boost performance to 1600 horsepower — 100 more than the standard Chiron. Engineers increased engine output via larger turbochargers with more efficient compressor wheels, as well as upgrades to the oil pump, cylinder head, transmission and clutch — all contributing to an engine that now redlines at 7100 rpm. “We increased the revolutions per minute for even greater longitudinal acceleration and an even more emotive driving experience,” said Michael Kodra, head of drive development at Bugatti.
As one would anticipate, performance figures for the Chiron Super Sport are most impressive. The Super Sport will accelerate to 200 km/h (124 mph) in a mere 5.8 seconds, and in 12.1 seconds this fastest Chiron eclipses 300 km/h (186 mph). In comparison, the Super Sport accelerates to 400 km/h (248.5 mph) seven percent faster than the “standard” Chiron. Engineers limited the Chiron Super Sport’s top speed to 273 mph.
Quiet and Balanced at High Speeds
“In spite of the immense power and the enormous longitudinal acceleration, the Chiron Super Sport offers a comfortable, quiet, and balanced drive,” explained Kodra. “Even above 6000 rpm, acceleration doesn’t diminish, giving the Chiron Super Sport a mighty thrust up to 7100 rpm. The attributes of this engine are a perfect fit for the fastest Chiron,” Kodra also observed.
To optimize aerodynamics for the extreme speed goals of the Chiron Super Sport, Bugatti engineers had to incorporate major changes to the Chiron design. Most noticeable: The car’s tail, which extends rearward about 10 inches more than the standard Chiron, as well as a larger rear diffuser cross section that reduces the trailing surface by 44 percent. This dramatically decreases wind resistance while providing exceptional downforce. “If we can generate downforce with the diffuser, there is no need for us to generate it with the drag inducing wings. This means we can retract the wing as far as possible in Top Speed mode for a drive with minimal drag,” explained Frank Heyl, deputy design director at Bugatti.
To improve airflow, engineers relocated the Chiron Super Sport’s exhaust outlets from the center of the car to the sides, while also elongating the apertures to create integrated vertical outlets. An added benefit of this aft redesign: a deeper, richer exhaust note for the Super Sport.
Changes Up Front
Creating additional stability and aerodynamics at high speeds, the Chiron Super Sport gets an updated front splitter as well as side air curtains that provide better airflow along the wheel arches.
Nine exhaust holes in each front fender release air pressure that can build up within the wheelwells — the net effect generates additional downforce on the front axle.
When it comes to high-speed driving, tires can easily become the weakest link of an automotive system when they have to suddenly accommodate extreme pressure and heat. For this latest Bugatti Super Sport, Michelin developed special Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires optimized for greater rigidity and smoothness, with the ability to consistently handle speeds up to 500 km/h (310.6 mph). These special tires have reinforced belts designed to deal with immense forces, and every tire gets a post-production X-ray to ensure no irregularities occurred during production.
In addition to the aforementioned aerodynamic and power improvements, Bugatti engineers developed a new chassis for the Chiron Super Sport. Steering systems and dampers have been improved, resulting in better feedback and control, and stiffer springs offer better stability at higher velocity. “Even on long bends taken at high speeds, the rear remains calm and neutral, resulting in a very composed drive in the Chiron Super Sport. Our focus at top speed is on absolute driving stability coupled with comfort,” explained Jachin Schwalbe, head of chassis development at Bugatti.
In keeping with the standard Chiron, the new Chiron Super Sport features an elegant interior that blends leather, polished aluminum and carbon fiber trim.
Previous Super Sport Bugattis
This new Chiron Super Sport is the latest supercar in a line of special high-velocity versions of Bugatti production automobiles. The Chiron is the fifth vehicle of this exclusive lineage — take a look at all five Super Sport models from Bugatti.
Bugatti Type 55 Super Sport
Bugatti has a long history of creating special high-speed versions of its cars, starting with the introduction of the Type 55 Super Sport at the 1931 Paris Motor Show. The Type 55 Super Sport is an elegant two-seat roadster built on a Grand Prix car chassis. Under the hood resides a supercharged 8-cylinder engine directly from the Type 51 Grand Prix race car, producing almost 160 horsepower in the early 1930s. With a top speed over 110 mph, only 38 of these unique cars were ever built. One example of the Type 55 Super Sport sold at auction last year. The price? Try $7.1 million.
Bugatti EB 110 Super Sport
The next Super Sport was created in 1993 — the EB 110 Super Sport. One of the most impressive supercars of the 1990s, the EB 110 Super Sport features all-wheel drive, carbon fiber bodywork and a quad-turbocharged V12 engine producing more than 600 horsepower. Capable of speeds in excess of 200 mph, only 39 EB 110 Super Sports were ever built.
Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport
Almost 20 years passed before another Super Sport emerged from Bugatti — this one being the Veyron 16.4 Super Sport. When Bugatti revealed the Veyron would generate 1000 horsepower, it raised the sports car bar in terms of performance, and the Super Sport notched it up even higher. Sporting a quad-turbo W16 engine that produces 1200 horsepower to all four wheels, the 2010 Veyron Super Sport reaches 100 kph (62 mph) in 2.5 seconds. With a top speed of 268 mph, the Veyron Super Sport held the Guinness World Record as the fastest road-legal sports car for many years.
Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+
Two years ago Bugatti set out to take back that world record, and to achieve what no other automaker had done — produce a car that could exceed 300 mph. The Chiron Super Sport 300+ achieved a top speed of 304.773 mph. To commemorate this outstanding land speed achievement, Bugatti built a limited number of Chiron Super Sport 300+ variants fashioned after the record-breaking car. The Super Sport 300+ features all the go-fast design changes found on the original 300+ mph car although, citing safety as a major concern, Bugatti engineers limited the top speed of the Super Sport 300+ to slightly less than the car’s namesake speed — 273 mph. Only 30 of these Super Sports were sold.
Bugatti Chiron Super Sport
Bugatti will soon begin building the Chiron Super Sport in Molsheim, France, with initial deliveries expected early next year. Although the automaker has not placed a specific limit on the number of Super Sports to be built, these will be part of a total Chiron production run of 500 vehicles — note that about 450 Chirons have either been built or are on order. The Chiron Super Sport has a price of €3.2 million (US$3.9 million).