Bugatti Chiron won't get open-top version, land speed record attempt

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Bugatti Chiron first drive

Bugatti Chiron first drive

Bugatti fans hoping for a reveal of an open-top Chiron along the lines of the Veyron's Grand Sport and Grand Sport Vitesse models are set for disappointment as the French marque has no plans for such a car.

That was the response from Bugatti boss Stephan Winkelmann to a question posed by Motor Trend about a potential Grand Sport Vitesse version of the Chiron in an interview published Thursday.

“We decided in the Chiron project not to do an open-top version,” Winkelmann said.

Bugatti Chiron with Sky View roof option

Bugatti Chiron with Sky View roof option

The former boss of Audi Sport and Lamborghini, who took over from Wolfgang Duerheimer at Bugatti earlier this year, didn't explain why there won't be an open-top Chiron but it likely has to do with the car's central spine forming an essential part of the structure.

As some solace, Bugatti offers the a Sky View option on the Chiron, which places two glass panels in the roof. The glass panels aren't removable but that might change for a rumored t-top model, although based on Winkelmann's comments the panels are likely to stay put.

Motor Trend also brought up the issue of Bugatti no longer attempting a land speed record for production cars with the Chiron, something Winkelmann's predecessor said would happen during 2018. Winkelmann explained that for him, there are many more facets to performance such as acceleration, braking and handling. This is why, under his guidance, Bugatti launched the track-focused Divo, whose top speed of 236 mph, dictated by chassis and aerodynamic modifications, is lower than the 261-mph governed top speed of the Chiron on which it is based.

Bugatti Divo

Bugatti Divo

“The idea with Divo translated into design, weight reduction, and more downforce to really showcase that top speed is important but not everything,” he said.

There's also the issue of companies like Hennessey Performance Engineering and SSC North America which are targeting top speeds in excess of 300 mph with their respective hypercars.

Interestingly, Winkelmann said recent models like the Chiron Sport and Divo don't represent the true successor to the Veyron Super Sport, which at one point held the land speed record, suggesting that a more extreme Chiron is still to come. He also said that Bugatti is ready for more and that electrification could play a role.

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