Charl Bosch
Online Motoring Reporter
2 minute read
17 Jun 2021
12:22 pm

490 km/h record setting Bugatti Chiron becomes R54m reality

Charl Bosch

Prototype speed holder morphs into new Chiron Super Sport still with 1 177 kW.

Changes from the standard Chiron at the front are minor.

Having set the record two years ago for the first car to topple 300 mph or 482 km/h, the then prototype Bugatti Chiron has become a production reality wearing the famed Super Sport moniker.

First used on the Type 55 in 1931 but more recently on the EB110 and perhaps most famously on the Veyron twelve years ago, the Chiron Super Sport’s main difference from the standard model and indeed the Sport, is improved aerodynamics aimed at nothing but obtaining the highest top speed possible.

Bugatti Chiron Super Sport

The most prominent to the Super Sport is the new rear engine cover to aid aerodynamics.

Officially clocked at 490.48 km/h during the mentioned record run in 2019 with multiple Daytona 24 hour and 1988 24 Hours of Le Mans winner Andy Wallace behind the wheel, the Super Sport boasts a 25 cm longer body than a normal Chiron as well a new engine cover that conceals the W16 engine in order to provide better air flow.

As well as a new diffuser and exhaust system with nine air holes said to be a tribute to the EB 110, the Super Sport loses the automatic air brake spoiler, but gains newly designed headlights, additional air vents behind the wheel arches for better brake cooling, the five Y-spoke alloy wheels from the Chiron Sport and air curtains down the sides of the air intakes again to aid air flow.

RELATED: Prototype Bugatti Chiron ups speed record to 490 km/h

Underneath its streamlined skin, Bugatti has revised the Chiron’s steering for improved feedback and fitted stiffer dampers for a more planted feel, while at the same time equipping the Super Sport with specifically made Michelin Pilot Cup 2 tyres the French rubber manufacturer claims has been reinforced to such an extent that it can withstand speeds past 500 km/h with the actual testing having taken place on a test bed once used by the Space Shuttle.

Despite its aerodynamic alterations, the Super Sport’s powerunit is carried over from the Sport with 1 600 PS or 1 177 kW of power being provided by the quad-turbocharged 8.0-litre bent-sixteen. The claimed torque output is also unchanged at 1 600 Nm but unlike the record breaker, Bugatti has opted to limit the top speed to 440 km/h. A strengthened seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox routes the amount of twist to all four wheels.

Bugatti Chiron Super Sport

Polished aluminium and carbon fibre has replaced the Alcantara used for the Sport inside.

Accordingly, the Super Sport will get from 0-200 km/h in 5.8 seconds and from 0-300 km/h in 12.1 seconds with the benchmark sprint from standstill to 400 km/h a full seven percent faster than the standard Chiron, according to Bugatti. Surprisingly, the 0-100 km/h time was not revealed.

Heading for production later this year with delivers commencing in early 2022, the Chiron Super Sport will have a limited production run of 60 units and command a price tag of €3.2-million (R53.7-million).