Deliveries of Bugatti Divo starting for the fortunate few

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Words: NZ Autocar
7 Aug 2020

The first few of just 40 Bugatti Divos are being handed over to customers from the factory in Molsheim, each costing $NZ8.9m.

The Divo, which is Chiron-based, has a limited top speed, more downforce and better agility. Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti, said “The Divo starts a new era at Bugatti – the era of modern coachbuilding.” This is equivalent to haute couture in the fashion sector; customised cars for individual tastes.

The new hyper-sports car was named after Albert Divo, a Bugatti works driver for two decades. He amassed six Grand Prix race wins and two Targa Florio victories.

“With the Divo we limited the top speed to 380 km/h, so we could create more downforce and turn the Divo into a visually and technically independent model”, Deputy Design Director Frank Heyl explains. So this hyper-sports car is even more agile than Chiron.

Thanks to its slimmer sideline and additional air intakes to cool the brakes, the Divo looks flatter and sportier. The bonnet now has air intakes that improve overall airflow. Compact, lightweight LED headlights with a narrow light opening distinguish it from Chiron.

At the rear are complex 3D lights, produced in part by 3D printing. A NACA Air Duct on the roof provides the 8.0-litre 1120kW/1600Nm W16 engine with its air intake, and minimises rear turbulence.

Prior to delivery each Divo undergoes a comprehensive road test. “We want to get as close to perfection as possible. Our customers expect that from us,” said Christophe Piochon, Molsheim Site Manager.

Four employees from the production and two from the quality assurance department test every Divo first. Technicians check all electronic functions of the vehicle and adjust the chassis.

Test driver Steve Jenny issues the dynamic approval for the hyper-sports cars after a five-hour trial covering around 300km. “In the mountains I can check the steering, cornering behaviour, shift points and hill starts,” he said.

At a nearby airport he tests launch control, driving in the different modes, air brake function, fast lane changes at 170km/h, braking behaviour, ESP and whether the full power is also available at 340km/h.

“We want to find any small but nevertheless possible points of criticism and eliminate them before delivery. Only then will the customer be happy with their Divo,” said Jenny. After the test the original wheels are refitted and a final one-hour 50km drive undertaken before sign-off.

A six-hour final visual inspection is undertaken before delivery.

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