Bugatti Chiron successor gets a hybrid V8


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Next-generation hypercar will get a smaller hybrid engine, with a design that will launch Bugatti into a “new era”.

Bugatti has confirmed the successor to the Chiron will be revealed next year ahead of a launch in 2026.

It will use a hybrid-assisted petrol V8 powertrain after the firm retired the iconic W16 powertrain with the Bugatti Mistral.

Speaking with Autocar, Achim Anscheidt, who oversaw the new hypercar’s design, said: “The car is finished. We delivered the prototype tooling a couple of months ago and the production tooling will be delivered in a couple of months from now.”

News about the Chiron successor follows Anscheidt’s announcement that he is stepping down as design chief after 19 years at the French firm. He said: “[The successor] was something that was more of a thinking exercise, especially on the interior, and everything I have tried to learn and comprehend over the last 19 years with Bugatti, I wanted to make sure this experience funnels into the car’s development.”

Anscheidt said the as-yet-unnamed successor has to “bring forward” Bugatti into a new era, while retaining the brand’s signature design cues such as the horseshoe grille and ‘Bugatti line’ – a prominent beltline that has featured on every Bugatti since the Type 57 of 1934.

Drawing on his own experience of the design process, Anscheidt said: “What the Chiron manifests today and where the brand sits from the Veyron to the Chiron and where the brand is now established, it takes a certain level-headed design direction to take that next step and not be drawn into some kind of styling exercise.”

The upcoming hypercar will sit on a new chassis and is expected to be leaner than the Bugatti Mistral roadster, due to the smaller, V8 powerplant.

“It will also have its constraints because of performance and performance needs,” said Anscheidt. “But we know every centimetre of our cars so well by now that we know exactly where [change] would help us and where it would create a problem.”

Bugatti is being very tight-lipped about its new model, revealing nothing about the design bar the electrified nature of the powertrain.

Other hybrid hypercars using battery-assisted engines range from the Aston Martin Valkyrie, with its 6.5-litre Cosworth V12 engine, to the Mercedes-AMG One, which has a turbocharged 1.6-litre V6 Formula 1 engine. Expect something nearer the Aston end of the scale for the next Bugatti.

Speaking to Autocar, Bugatti’s new design director, Frank Heyl, said the new car will “be even more amazing” than the Mistral, asking fans to “trust us”.

He added: “It’s going to be amazing, proportionally, technologically, in terms of innovation, in terms of unexpectedness. It’s going to blow people out of the water completely, and it’s a true joy to work on this.”

Designing the car has been a challenge, Heyl added. “If you compare [the Mistral] to the LaFerrari, it’s actually quite a compact car for what it is, with the gearbox in between the seats, which was done for weight-balance reasons,” he said. “But with a hybrid powertrain, you have the added weight of the batteries, so you have to reconsider the architecture of the whole car.”

The interior won’t be getting a dramatic overhaul, though, and will instead stay close to the firm’s recent offerings, Bugatti interior designer Aldo Maria Sica said. We expect it to use a larger central infotainment touchscreen in the same vein as the modernised Aston Martin DB12.

Next up, Bugatti will look at an electric car, Bugatti Rimac boss Mate Rimac has said previously.

Additional reporting by Jonathan Bryce

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