The Bugatti Concept that Came Before the Chiron

Blue Bugatti (Bugatti)

Bugatti’s journey is a rare success story in the automotive world. After two bankruptcies, Volkswagen Group revived the brand in 1998. Before the first production Bugatti, the Chiron 18/3 Concept debuted at the 1999 Frankfurt Motor Show, previewing the brand’s future direction and setting the standard for modern supercars.

Designed by Italdesign Giugiaro, the concept drew inspiration from Bugatti’s past, incorporating elements like the iconic horseshoe grille, eight-spoke wheels, and a two-part grille reminiscent of the Type 57 SC.

Concept Car That Led to the Bugatti Chiron (Bugatti)

The interior featured supple leather, bright aluminum fixtures, and a manual transmission that unfortunately never made it to production. The concept boasted a 6.3-liter naturally aspirated W-18 engine, producing 547 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque.

However, Bugatti later switched to a W-16 engine, which powered the Chiron. This engine produced an impressive 987 horsepower and 922 pound-feet of torque, making it a beast on the road.

As Bugatti transitions to a new era, joining forces with Rimac and adopting electric powertrains, the influences of the Chiron concept are fading.

The upcoming Chiron successor, debuting on June 20, will feature an all-new V-16 hybrid engine and draw inspiration from classic Bugatti models like the Type 57 SC Atlantic, Type 41 Royale, and Type 35. This new era promises to be a familiar yet exciting chapter in Bugatti’s history, blending tradition with innovation.