Bugatti Veyron Super Sport driven

8 Oct, 2010 6:57pm Jürgen Zöllter

Meet Bugatti’s Veyron Super Sport, which took us all the way up to 268mph!

Verdict

5
With its mind-blowing statistics, it’s easy to think of the Veyron Super Sport as purely an engineering exercise. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. The Super Sport is docile at low speed and even more ferocious than the standard model when the pace picks up. This is the pinnacle of combustion-engined cars, and we’re unlikely to see anything like it ever again.

Bugatti is back where it belongs! After losing its crown as the world’s fastest production car to the American-built Aero SSC Ultimate, the Veyron has bitten back. With 1,183bhp, a more slippery bodyshell and a confirmed top speed of 268mph, the Veyron Super Sport is officially the quickest thing on four wheels. Auto Express has driven the record breaker on the stunning roads of Andalucia, Spain.

Watch our video of the Bugatti Super Sport at the 2010 Paris Motor Show.

 

You might think that turning the Veyron back into a world-beater was simply a case of stuffing more horsepower under the hood – but the conversion from standard model to the Super Sport is more extensive than that.

Aerodynamics are key when it comes to top speed, so the Super Sport gets a longer roof with twin triangular air ducts, instead of scoops. It features a more slippery silhouette to feed more air to the engine.  

The front air intakes have been expanded and reshaped, while two further vents have been added underneath the headlights. A new front splitter and F1-style double diffuser help to improve high-speed stability, too. Lightness is another crucial factor for extracting maximum performance, so the Super Sport has been on a diet. A total of 50kg has been shed thanks to lighter wheels, a redesigned monocoque (removes 25kg but is 10 per cent stiffer), carbon-fibre A-pillars borrowed from the Gran Sport and a new exhaust system – which also gets a wider and elongated design.

The changes continue under the skin, with longer second and third-gear ratios for the seven-speed twin-clutch gearbox, a wider rear track and quicker-reacting automatic dampers – which now deliver the ultimate combination of supple low-speed ride and unflappable high-speed control.

Instead of deploying at 137mph, as it does on the regular Veyron, the rear spoiler rises automatically at 113mph in a bid to better control the huge performance on offer.

Thanks to four even larger turbos, two improved intercoolers and the new exhaust system with reduced back-pressure, the 8.0-litre quad-turbocharged W16 now produces 1,183bhp and a colossal 1,500Nm of torque. As a result, it also produces quite a lot of heat. In fact, on full throttle the 16-cylinder engine churns out 80 times that produced by the central heating system of an average-sized family house.

Ironically for a model with such a landmark top speed, customer cars are actually limited to 258mph – 10mph short of their full potential – to avoid shredding the tyres. But if fuel consumption is a concern that’s no bad thing. At top speed the SS will drain its 100-litre fuel tank in 10 minutes, averaging 2mpg!

The biggest surprise comes when you drive the car in town at regular speeds – it’s as docile as a VW Golf. Wait for the roads to open up and squeeze the throttle, though, and the Super Sport bares its teeth.

Firstly, you hear the turbos breathing heavily as they spool up, then over 3,800rpm the engine, via the free-flowing exhaust, begins to roar. A “click, clack” can be heard as the spoiler emerges, and from there on you feel a relentless shove in the back. Yet thanks to four-wheel drive and a wider rear track, the Super Sport is capable in corners, too, with a hint of playful oversteer.

In every capacity, the Super Sport is better than the standard Veyron, except for its price tag, of course – a cool £1.7million. Yet 26 of the limited run of 30 Super Sports have been sold, so if you want your own slice of car history, you’d better be quick.

 

Disqus - noscript

"more horsepower under the hood"? EXCUSE ME? I thought the Veryron was a coupe, NOT a convertible? The hood is the roof you dingbats! Unless you weak knee'd journalists are going all American on us Brits! Cut out the silly gaffs and start talking English for crying out loud. Next you'll be talking about gas instead of petrol, and trunks instead of boots! Oh dear oh dear.

Where is this madness going to end?

Jurgen isn't a Brit, he's a Deutscher...so he's free to choose whichever word he wants. Bonnet sounds ever so, so, quaint.

Competition never rests: SSC is now pushing for 275mph

http://fancytuning.com/2010/10...

Now the spoiler on your Porsche deploys at 75mph. A potential embarrassment. 113mph is just too incriminating.

Up Yours Fritz!

I guess if you've lashed out £1.7M on the car, you can probably afford the speeding fines, IF they catch you. The guy who owned 'the beast' (Merlin engined capri with a roller grille) was notorious for out-running the plod :-)

I like the look of the new SSC - that should set the cat among the pidgeons !! Bring it on !!

I guess if you've lashed out £1.7M on the car, you can probably afford the speeding fines, IF they catch you. The guy who owned 'the beast' (Merlin engined capri with a roller grille) was notorious for out-running the plod :-)

I like the look of the new SSC - that should set the cat among the pidgeons !! Bring it on !!

I think some correspondents here should actually grow up and stop hurling insults at the author of this piece, Dame Edna in particular, that's just being very immature and has nothing to do with the car at all.

Speaking of which, it's a looker and no mistake but what the hell is the point of having all that raw power. There's practically nowhere on this planet where all that horse power could be used to any effect, save perhaps the Salt Flats or The Sahara. This thing sounds as if it will do the legal 70 mph in this country with the engine at idling speed in its sleep.

Nick7 - hold your horses! I was making a more generic observation that our country seems to be slowly morphing into the 51st state of the USA. Why? I've seen far too many articles of late using American jargon instead of English. You're obviously one of those who doesn't care but I for one would like us to stay English if that's possible. For example, our dates used to be dd/mm/yy (it uses that format here!). But today, lots of youngsters put the month first, as the Americans do - as in 'October 12th'. 911 in English would have been the 9th of November for example - most confusing!

So when someone comes on to an English site and uses American slang to describe a car, it's fair that we should pick them up on it. I know they'd pick you up on your words in America if you started using English slang there! Bonnets are very much to do with the way we talk about our cars - even Bugatti's! Where else can we talk about how we describe cars if not on a car website?

Sorry to sound so exaperated but I see far too much of this and I feel it's time some of us highlight this trend. Maybe no one else is bothered?

Nick7 - hold your horses! I was making a more generic observation that our country seems to be slowly morphing into the 51st state of the USA. Why? I've seen far too many articles of late using American jargon instead of English. You're obviously one of those who doesn't care but I for one would like us to stay English if that's possible. For example, our dates used to be dd/mm/yy (it uses that format here!). But today, lots of youngsters put the month first, as the Americans do - as in 'October 12th'. 911 in English would have been the 9th of November for example - most confusing!

So when someone comes on to an English site and uses American slang to describe a car, it's fair that we should pick them up on it. I know they'd pick you up on your words in America if you started using English slang there! Bonnets are very much to do with the way we talk about our cars - even Bugatti's! Where else can we talk about how we describe cars if not on a car website?

Sorry to sound so exaperated but I see far too much of this and I feel it's time some of us highlight this trend. Maybe no one else is bothered?

...since the engine is at the back. Calm down all of you.

I read that there are 365-section tires on this, does anyone know what the cost is? What gas would this thing run on, 100 octane?

I believe the tires are around $2500 a pop. Bet a full sized spare wouldn't fit in the trunk. She probably runs on moonshine. Have a nice day y'all!

I know it's all about the car but American slang on a UK based website really is poor journalism. Come on AE we all know you are cowboys, what the Sport is to daily newspapers, but even you can do better!

It's hardly a world beater is it, the MG ZT-T managed an average of 268mph, ok it ran on solid wheels and had a parachute for brakes but if MG Rover mangaged it £2.68 from loose change from Longbridge's vending machine, surely 8 years on this is no big news from Bugatti is it?

Ok to achieve that top speed it would need a 10 mile straight road, with no police and no other road users. So a bit pointless. However there are roads like that in Nevada but you would struggle to find a petrol station and the 45c heat of the desert would probably cook the already boiling W10 anyway!

Sorry W16!

Key specs

* Price: £1.7million
* Engine: 8.0-litre W16 quad-turbo
* Transmission: Seven-speed twin-clutch, four-wheel drive
* Power: 1,183bhp
* Torque: 1,500Nm
* 0-62mph: 2.5 seconds
* Top speed: 258mph (limited)
* Economy: 10.2mpg
* CO2: 596g/km
* Equipment: Sports exhaust, automatic spoiler, leather
upholstery, carbon-fibre trim, carbon-ceramic brakes
* On sale: Now

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