Bugatti in funding search for 4-seater stablemate to Chiron

The luxury brand is moving to double its line-up by adding a 2nd model

by MATHEW MILLER & JAMES LUDDEN/ pic by BLOOMBERG

Nearly all of the Chiron Super Sport 300+ models slated for production were sold

AFTER selling almost all 30 of its US$3.9 million (RM16.26 million) special-edition Chiron supercars over dinner, Bugatti is moving to double its line-up by adding a second model.

Unlike the limited-run Chiron — a version of the car that set a 304mph (489.24kph) record earlier this month — the new vehicle may take the shape of a four-seater, Bugatti president Stephan Winkelmann said in an interview.

It could also leave the world’s racetracks for some off-road driving, he said, a departure for a brand honed on producing race cars going at incredible speeds.

Bugatti, one of a stable of super-premium Volkswagen AG (VW)-owned brands including Porsche, Lamborghini and Bentley, is looking at “sexy” financing for the new model, Winkelmann said. Porsche used a German promissory note called a Schuldschein to partially fund the development and production of the battery-powered Taycan.

There is still a lot of time for internal combustion engines, says Winkelmann

Demand for supercars remains unbroken, judging by a dinner held at Bugatti’s headquarters in Molsheim, France, over the weekend.

Nearly all of the Chiron Super Sport 300+ models slated for production were sold, Winkelmann said.

Even so, the focus at the Frankfurt auto show this week will be on electric vehicles like the Taycan and VW’s coming ID.3.

A battery version of the Chiron wouldn’t work, he said — hypercars still need combustion fire power. But he could see a less-expensive daily driver at a lower price, say in the US$1 million range, working in a hybrid-electric set-up.

“There is still a lot of time for internal combustion engines,” the 54-year-old said.

Attendees view the Bugatti Centodieci supercar during The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering in California last month

The Chiron Super Sport 300+ has some modifications and is 20cm longer than the version that raced around a recently resurfaced VW track in Ehra-Lessien, Germany.

Winkelmann briefly discussed the idea of uniting VW’s luxury brands under one umbrella.

He declined to be drawn on the prospects of Bugatti holding a public stock offering, saying it’s not his decision to make.

“If we put those type of brands together it’s unique in the automotive industry,” Winkelmann said. — Bloomberg