The French Connection - Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport (2020)

in hive-174578 •  3 months ago 

At 111 years of age, Bugatti is one of the oldest carmakers in the world. Yet, unlike some of their more corporate siblings, Bugatti has managed to maintain its traditions of excess, and exclusivity. They also happen to craft some of the most iconic cars in history.

As for their stable, Bugattis in recent times have been known for one thing - top speed. They've fixated on breaking world records, and setting mind-boggling speeds, at which very few land vehicles have ever traveled at. This is the mantra that carries over to their road-going cars as well, designed for high-speed cruising, with comfort and ease.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

It's easy to assume that Bugatti's hypercars are sporty, but in actuality - while they're excellent in a straight line, they don't take corners very well. Cars like the Chiron are powerful, but also heavy, and tuned for stability at 400+km/h, with less of a focus on cornering ability.

So, what if Bugatti made a more "athletic " car, engineered for agility on even the most twisty, demanding roads? A driver's car, as one would say, but following the same ethos of a traditional Bugatti. This marks the conception of the Chiron Pur Sport, which translates to Pure Sport, and it's the driver's Bugatti that we've been waiting for.

A Long Time Ago, In A Galaxy Far, Far Away.

While it may seem as a minor update over the standard Chiron, there are some subtle differences which makes all the difference to how this car will drive. The highlight of which, is the Pur Sport's rear-wing - sitting fixed in place, and proudly at 1.90 metres wide.

According to Bugatti's designers, it's been modeled after an X-wing, and the silhouette provides extensive downforce to the Pur Sport, more than a "regular " Chiron. The rear-wing is also lighter than in a Chiron, as its stationary nature doesn't require any heavy hydraulics to operate it.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

Keeping ourselves to the Pur Sport's backside, it has a redesigned rear-diffuser, and most interestingly, a 3D-printed titanium exhaust. Titanium itself is already lightweight, but using 3D-printing actually allows Bugatti to shave off excess material. Following a familiar pattern of saving weight and adding downforce, the front sees some revisions as well.

There are now some additional louvres to help relieve pressure from the wheel wells. The headlights are similar to a Chiron, but they've been angled slightly downwards to give it an angrier face. Other small improvements, including Bugatti's traditional "horseshoe " grille that's been made slightly larger, for more air intake.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

If you happen to see one in your rear-view mirror, that number 16 reminds you how many cylinders the Chiron has, and that you should probably get out of the way. Below that, there's a much sharper, more aggressive carbon-fibre front splitter for additional downforce, teaming up with that rear-wing. You'll also see more venting for controlling airflow, and cooling the brakes.

Speaking of, the round-bits of the Chiron have also seen significant changes in the Pur Sport. A lot of thought had gone through designing the standout wheels, which are made from a mix of carbon-fibre, and magnesium. The mixture saves weight, 16kg in fact, while also providing other neat extras.

The reason for adding magnesium, rather than using full-carbon wheels, is to help with ventilating heat away from the brakes. Imaginably, having a still-heavy car, means that braking will produce a lot of heat. To help with that, Bugatti made the wheels in a "turbofan " design to pull away the excess hotness.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

That design also helps to add even more downforce, by reducing drag of the air passing through. Pairing with those wheels and brakes, are some special tyres. Courtesy of Michelin, they've made some extra-sticky tyres for when you're cornering hard in your Pur Sport. Completing the exterior look, and not forgetting those expensive carbon-fibre windscreen wipers, is the livery.

It may be familiar, but Bugatti's traditional blue is still striking to look at, especially with the contrasting that they've put on here. With the optional split paintwork, you can get the bottom third of your Pur Sport in exposed carbon-fibre, with their black-ness supposedly blending in with the road, making your car look sleeker than it is.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

Unlike the exterior, the interior doesn't see as much of an overhaul. It’s still familiar to a standard Chiron, with split zones between the driver and passenger, with that large ambient lighting in the middle. Sitting down, you're greeted with a not-so-round steering wheel, and peering at a speedometer that goes to 500km/h.

The minimalistic interior does see material changes in the Pur Sport, with plenty of Alcantara and carbon-fibre. This is done for the sake of removing even more weight, without sacrificing comfort. There's not much to talk about here, though it's worth mentioning that those cushy seats are now sportier, carbon-bucket seats.

Reinventing The Wheel.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

It's not an understatement to call the Pur Sport a reinvention of the Chiron, as there's more changes under the skin. We've talked a lot about weight savings, but how much weight did they actually save? Well, it's still a behemoth, weighing in at 1945kg, which is only 50kg lighter than the Chiron. Crucially however, most of that weight has been saved from unsprung mass, which helps with the Pur Sport's athleticism.

Giving it all that shove is an 8-litre, quad-turbocharged W16 engine, making a total of 1500hp and 1180lb-ft of torque. Those are certainly impressive numbers, and the huge engine even revs higher too, now topping out at 6900RPM, which is 200RPM more than the Chiron. More crucially though, are the changes that Bugatti's engineers have made to the gearbox.

Credits to: Bugatti (W16 Engine)

With the Pur Sport's focus on agility, gearing has been shortened by 15%, thus giving it better acceleration overall, with a sacrifice to top speed. "Sacrilegious! ", one might say, given Bugatti's history of breaking the sound barrier. Bad news first - the Pur Sport has a top speed of 350km/h, which is 70km/h lower than the Chiron. Still very fast, but not good enough…

The good news - a sprint from 0-100km/h now takes only 2.3 seconds, with 0-200km/h taking 5.9 seconds, and 0-300km/h in just 12.4 seconds. Literally breathtaking, and this means a quick tap on the throttle, and you'll be passing most speed limits in record time. While not "faster " than a Chiron, the Pur Sport is certainly "quicker ", especially in the real world, and once you show it some corners.

Credits to: Bugatti (2020 Chiron Pur Sport)

Helping to keep all that weight and power in place, is a tuned suspension setup for the Pur Sport. The keyword here is "stiff ", and that stiffness comes without the expense of comfort. Dampers and springs have been firmed by 65% at the front, and 33% at the rear, while the car also sits a bit lower than the Chiron.

Combined with a new ESC setting on the steering wheel, the re-worked suspension and chassis will make the Pur Sport less of a comfy grand-tourer, and more of a thoroughbred. As Bugatti showed with their sketches, and one which I've used as the thumbnail for this post, you're more than welcome to drift your Pur Sport, something not so easily accomplished with a "base " Chiron.

A Run On The Bank.

Overall, this pure driver's car very much excites the inner petrolhead in me, and I'm sure it has you tingling with excitement as well. "How can I buy this? ", you must be thinking, and this isn't a concept, so you can get one. That's assuming all 60 units haven't yet been sold to billionaires, and you can afford the €3 million price tag, though that's including taxes.

I imagine the regular Bugatti customer might be able to get one for cheaper, as they'll be familiar with avoiding taxes. For the regular person, like you and I, the Chiron Pur Sport is something that we can only dream about. More importantly however, this is a reminder that we now live in the most exciting era for combustion engines.

What do you think? Given a €3,000,000 budget, would you buy a Pur Sport, or do you have another car in mind?

Thanks for reading! For more updates on my blogs, or the more minute things in life, feel free to follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn, and maybe give a shout there as well!

While you're at it, follow along @zacknorman97 for more, coming soon :-)

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Stunning car especially in this livery blue over black. And even the motor looks like a jewell. But I don't know if I have 3M, I'll buy one... I prefer old cars but it will be a thrill to be behind this wheel for one day or two.
Great post...

Thanks mate 😃. The livery is fantastic, especially with that exposed carbon-fibre. That W16 engine is indeed a jewel, and with emissions regulations upon us, who know how long it'll have before Bugatti has to downsize. It's worth appreciating it while it's still here. I do wish Bugatti would consider making less expensive cars...