This unhappy-looking insect is the B Engineering Edonis. It was the short-lived phoenix that rose out of the Bugatti EB110’s ashes.
By the winter of 1994, things weren’t looking good for Bugatti. Debts were piling up, sales of supercars were stagnating in the recession, and the creditors were knocking on the factory gates. The company went into receivership with only 130 EB110s having made it out to owners.
After it went pop, a cluster of ex-Bugatti bods with time on their hands grouped together to not let the 17 unused chassis’ go to waste, and created this truly bonkers machine.
Its tub was related to the EB110’s, but the car around it was very different: new aluminium bodywork, new interior, and the V12 swelled: bored out from 3.5 to 3.8 litres. Then, its four small IHI turbos were swapped for two big ones. Result: 680bhp. Meanwhile, the four-wheel drive system was binned, and the car was left rear-wheel drive only. The Edonis weighed in 70kg lighter than the EB110.
TG’s Paul Horrell is one of the few people on Earth who know what it’s like to uncork the Edonis and floor it. Here’s what he thought of the experience:
“I’ll never be the same again. It wasn’t the first few full-throttle second-gear bursts that did it – those times I’d just been pushed hard forward to the sound of two gigantic turbos spooling up, then come to a bend or an obstacle. It’s your classical turbo engine: a whole lot of nothing in particular until 3,500rpm, followed by a dark, fuzzy premonition that something evil this way comes.
“At 4,000rpm, come it does. The turbos spool up and I’m just… just what? Hurled? Rocketed? Catapulted? I don’t have the word. The force is shocking. A near-frantic grab into third, again that force, and for a wide-eyed moment fourth too. A metallic, uninsulated, race-car screaming of V12, a zing of turbos, and as the throttle’s released at each gearchange, the rush of opening wastegates like a dam bursting a foot behind you.”