Removable roof at a price of 1.4 million euros
The new Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport is a symbol of aesthetics and driving dynamics. In response to customer demand, significant modifications have been made to the vehicle's complex structure so as to enable open-top driving, thereby adding a new dimension to this high-performance sports car.
Incorporating a host of new and innovative safety and equipment features, it is the world's fastest and most exciting roadster. It is immediately recognizable as a result of its slightly higher windscreen, stylized daytime running lights, and lightweight, transparent polycarbonate roof.
The main challenge in developing the new Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport with its removable roof resulted from the unique structure of the fixed-roof Bugatti Veyron. An optimum combination of rigidity and lightweight engineering ensures the monocoque passenger cell of the original model is extremely strong, while weighing an absolute minimum . As the roof is an integral part of the vehicle's structure, removing it meant the load paths had to be completely redesigned to maintain the vehicle's rigidity and crash safety, and to offer additional protection from side impacts and rolling.
As a result, the monocoque structure has been reinforced around the side skirts and the transmission tunnel. The B-pillars have been cross-stiffened using a carbon fibre support, and a central carbon plate has been positioned beneath the transmission tunnel to ensure the vehicle suffers from less torsional flexing than any other roadster.
Along with moisture-resistant, backstitched leather, a range of new equipment features has been added to the interior, including a reversing camera with 2.7-inch monitor integrated in the rear-view-mirror, and the "Puccini" sound system with digital signal processor. When the roof is closed, the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport can reach 407 km/h, while speeds of up to 360 km/h are possible with the roof off.
Should it rain, an innovative soft-top roof, like an umbrella, stored in the luggage compartment, can be opened up at any time. With this soft top in place, the car can travel at up to 160 km/h.
Assembled by hand at the company's headquarters in Molsheim, Alsace, the Grand Sport will be delivered from July 2009 onwards at a price of 1.4 million euros (excluding taxes and transportation). Just 150 units will be made, with the first 50 of these going exclusively to registered Bugatti customers. So far 30 Grand Sports have been ordered. ■