September 20, 2007 Ah, the Bugatti Veyron – the supercar to end all supercars. The one million Euro, 400 km/h (248.5 mph) machine laid claim to the title of the fastest, most powerful and most expensive street-legal production car in the world in 2005. But more than that, it’s an engineering achievement of epic proportions, a 1000-horsepower, aluminum and carbon-fiber celebration of the pinnacles of speed, power and aerodynamics that are possible when no expense is spared. The sheer genius and artistry of its construction are highlighted by the limited edition Veyron Pur Sang unveiled at Frankfurt, the first supercar ever released without a paint job. The raw beauty of the Pur Sang’s perfectly shaped materials is even more striking and inspiring than the gorgeous paint jobs on the standard production models.
It’s a stunning and confronting idea – forget the shiny paint job, let the bodywork and high-end materials speak for themselves. Clear-coat the carbon-fibre, polish the aluminium and release a naked supercar onto the market. Does it work? Heavens yes. Without the intoxicating distraction of a deep and reflective paint job, it’s impossible not to be affected by the utter perfection of the craftsmanship that’s gone into the car. It simply turns every lay onlooker into an engineering enthusiast.
Head of Bugatti Design, Achim Anscheidt, explains where the inspiration for the Pur Sang (literally “pure blood”) came from: “Visitors to the Atelier in Molsheim are always intrigued to see the Veyron’s high-tech components being meticulously assembled into an automotive work of art. Watching the car coming together, coupled with an admiration for the technical beauty of its structure, gave the designers the idea of finishing the car in its pure material configuration – meaning no coloor coating.
“Interestingly, the rawness of the materials even more strongly highlights the dual character of this car: performance power coupled with cruising comfort, structure and body, dark and light. A closer look at the details reveals the technical logic behind this stylistic appearance. The sophisticated monocoque contains all the core structural components, including the W16 engine, the passenger cell, the crash box and the linkages to the wheels. It is this purpose-driven fundament that is visible as the center of the car in clear-coated carbon fiber.
“Equally consistent is the use of the aluminum panelling. This lends shape and a unique body sculpture to the car, covering the wheels in a muscular and powerful expression by way of elaborately shaped fenders. Highly polished, these perfectly tensioned shapes strongly visualize the fascinating surface reflections that define every Veyron.”
The Pur Sang comes in at around 100kg lighter than the standard Veyron, improving an already ludicrous power-to-weight figure and making the car even quicker.
The extremely limited edition Bugatti Veyron Pur Sang was first unveiled to the public at the Frankfurt Auto Show, and its debut was so striking that the entire production run of five units sold out in less than 24 hours despite its shattering 1.4 million Euro pre-tax price tag.
If you haven't already had carpet-burns on your lower jaw from breathless descriptions of the bog-standard Bugatti Veyron, take a moment to read this fantastic piece from Top Gear's Jeremy Clarkson.