Bugatti Grand Sport Vitesse Debut at Geneva
The Lamborghini Aventador J that is currently on a stand at the Geneva Motor Show is without question a magnificent looking roadster. Powerful too, with 700 BHP to play with. But, its mad looks and the fact that it has no windshield render it a bit silly. It shouldn't be taken as a joke in any case, it can still shed your face off, but it's all a bit of fun, it relies on flamboyancy and spunk. It beats its chest that it is what it is – a Lamborghini titan of hypercars.
However, the Aventador J does not, in any possible way, overshadow that other roadster at the show. I am talking about the god of hypercars (with a haircuts) - Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse.
As far as the figures are concerned, today this is the fastest open-top in the world. The Vitesse builds on the success of the previous Grand Sport that had "mere" 1001 ponies at its disposal. Now, by overhauling the four turbos and intercoolers, Bugatti have made the Vitesse more Super Sport-worthy. Let's sum it up: a 7.9 liter W16 engine that brings 1,200 BHP and 1500 Nm of torque to all four wheels. The top speed is 410 kph or 255 mph (limited to 375 kph/233 mph). A zero to sixty time - 2.6 seconds. Yikes!
That new-found power has triggered an inevitable chain reaction that jolts trough the whole Veyron construction. Bugatti has promptly reinforced all drivetrain components in order to safely transfer the immense forces at any given moment. The bits within the 7-speed DSG gearbox have been specially modified to cope fairly with the new stresses. The same goes for the airflow that used to run through the components of the previous Grand Sport. It has now been further optimized. Ironically, somehow with the more power, the fuel economy has also been improved.
The chassis has had some work done. New, "quick-responding" dampers have been fitted which literally obliterate the possibility of body roll or pitching during braking or accelerating. The ESP has been revised to "lag" just a little bit after shooting out form a corner so that you can have that millisecond of slipperishness. Additionally, the brakes are now being cooled more efficiently in order for them to cope with the increased power.
Many aerodynamic components from the Super Sport have been picked off, redesigned and stuck to the Grand Sport Vitesse. At the front, bigger air intakes around the center grille, slashed with a line horizontally, give the car some identity. The bottom air vent stretches sideways into the wheel housing and gives this exceptional sports car an extremely masterful appearance. Further down, there is a newly made front spoiler. The Headlights, with their black frames are also new. The rear end also comes from the Super Sport but with two diffusers and two tailpipes clustered in the middle. All-new, lighter 20-inch "Vitesse"-type alloy wheels complete the picture
The two highest points of the car are the air scoops on the engine cover. Familiar from the Grand Sport, these are now again redesigned for the Vitesse and also act as components of an anti-roll protection system. Needless to say, that just like its predecessor, the Vitesse is virtually made all from carbon fiber.
Since you can go your way with the customization process, the end products may vary. That is why at the Geneva Motor Show there are two Vitesse configurations – one is in a strikingly blue, exposed carbon fiber finish and the other in "JetGrey" coating with an orange interior and black rims and grille. For the more conventional Veyron fans there's also a classic Grand Sport version present just to remind you that it still exists.