In pictures: Witness the rough-hewn wildness of the Bugatti Bolide
Bugatti has released a photo dump showing its nascent Bolide hypercar getting a little coy with some of its clothes off. Currently #6 on our list of the world's most powerful cars, the 1,825-hp Bolide prototype is an epically raw rejection of luxury.
It brings us no small measure of glee to see Bugatti leaving the luxury trowel in the bucket and going so rudely performance-focused on the Bolide. This series of tastefully dusty pit garage shots make the Bolide look a hair's breadth away from being a race car.
The steering wheel cover, for example, looks like it's been sewn together out of a couple of cut-up beer coolers. The interior trim is an afterthought. The linkages look spindly and utilitarian. And the carbon! Carbon fiber has become so fetishistically glamorized in the last decade or two that it's almost shocking to see it here looking rough, raw, hand-laid and unvarnished instead of glossed within an inch of its life and presented as bling.
I love it. But being realistic, this is a hastily-assembled prototype, so its rough-hewn finish will probably be filed back to a typically showy gleam by the time the production cars are finished. Such is the way of vastly expensive things.
Still, the Bolide concept is a profoundly different direction for the modern Bugatti. It won't even be certified for road use, so the only piece of "public road" it ever drives on may be the Nurburgring when it gets out there and tries to hit its outrageous simulated lap time. Normally we'd expect this thing to go out and try to prove its claims of top speeds above 500 km/h (311 mph), which would also likely require a closed-off public road, but Bugatti said it was done with chasing speed records after it took the Chiron briefly over 300 mph (483 km/h) last year.
It will be a track beast of outrageous excess; the sheer, blood-freezing power of it, combined with the driver's knowledge of how much it costs (something we can only assume at this point), will quite possibly end up making it slower around a track than cheaper machines. The target on an owner's back coming out of pit lane at a track day will be bigger than the dank, echoing cave full of gold coins he (or she, but let's be honest, he) sleeps in.
No matter, this X-winged, 16-cylinder, quad-turbo fire breather is perhaps more likely than any other recent Bugatti to get driven in proper anger rather than being tooled around from estate to casino to marina, or wherever it is that the ultra-rich go these days. And I respect it for that.
Learn all about the Bolide's specs and technology in our launch story, or jump into the gallery for a good drool.