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Farewell, Bugatti W16: one last ride in the 16-cylinder Veyron and Chiron

Plus: a few secrets from test driver Andy Wallace, including jumping a Chiron... at 250mph

Published: 18 Jun 2024
22 minutes 17 seconds

On 20 June we’ll see Bugatti’s next hypercar, one powered by an all-new V16 engine, and that means the reign of the W16 is over.

And what a reign it’s been. The numbers from the unique 8.0-litre, quad-turbo, sixteen-cylinder leviathan might not seem all that remarkable in a world of 2,000bhp electric supercars, but when the Veyron was unveiled in 2005, its 987bhp (1,001PS) output was staggering.

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Over the next two decades, power went up to 1,200PS for the Super Sport model, the arrival of its 2016 successor (the Chiron) saw a rise to 1,500PS, and its own Super Sport variant took us to 1,600PS – and over 300mph.

Let’s not get lost in the numbers though, despite the Top Trumps statistics. The Veyron was the world’s first hypercar, it and the Chiron normalised four-figure outputs, and the pair remain the only true luxury hypercars. Nothing else has such a colossal breadth of abilities.

To celebrate the W16, we took the Veyron and Chiron on one final road trip with Bugatti's chief test driver Andy Wallace, who shared a few secret stories – including one of jumping a Chiron at over 250mph.

Over to Top Gear magazine’s deputy editor, Ollie Kew…

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