Bugatti W16 Mistral quarter front road open top

The real reason Bugatti honored the W16 Quad Turbo is a roadster

over the past years, Bugatti He has proven himself to be a master of speed. While some car companies also build supercars, no one has done so consistently and with confidence like Bugatti. The French automaker’s supercars have defined Bugatti for the past two decades.


While Bugatti had made fast racing cars and supercars, it was their introduction of the Veyron that pushed it to new heights. The EB 110 was a great sports car, with a top speed of 220 mph in its most powerful form. But the Veyron and its successors are simply too much, which builds a strong case for Bugatti as a major supercar maker.

The French automaker at least attributed the success of the Veyron, Chiron and its current supercars to its one-of-a-kind engine – the W16. This mill paved the way for Bugatti to deliver ultra-fast creations that left speed demons drooling for more.

Bugatti recently revealed a new supercar that pays tribute to the powerful W16 engine. Interestingly enough, the last supercar to feature the crazy engine also bears its name – the W16 Mistral. not only this, The latest Bugatti W16 supercar is the Roadster, And there’s a good reason for that.

Related: Bugatti W16 Mistral Vs Hennessey Venom F5: Ultimate Hyper Roadster


W16: Crazy but legendary engine from Bugatti

The start of the W16 can be traced back to 1997 with Ferdinand Karl Petsch, Chairman of Volkswagen AG at the time, presenting the initial idea to Karl-Heinz Neumann, head of engine development at Volkswagen. Soon the engineers were working at the plant, starting from scratch. They had to develop every component from the basics, just to prove they could build an engine that was not only powerful, but manageable as well.

Over the years, the W16 has become a production reality. Engineers set two eight-cylinder blocks at a 90-degree angle to each other, with four exhaust gas turbochargers providing the boost. This paved the way for the cylinders to be arranged in a ‘W’ configuration, allowing the W16 to boast no larger volume than a V12 despite having a 16-cylinder setup.

This revolutionary W16 engine debuted in the Veyron in 2005. With about 8.0 liters in displacement, the W16 remains the only 16-cylinder engine in the world that has been able to power road cars. Since the W16 was first installed in the Veyron, Bugatti has improved the Chiron’s engine and successful supercar models.

For nearly 20 years, W16 was the fastest car on earth. Its most powerful version powers the Bugatti Bolide, delivering 1,825 horsepower of maximum output and 1,364 pound-feet of peak torque.

The W16 Mistral is a roadster that delivers a real feel

As revealed by Bugatti, the Mistral is a W16 swan song. The W16 Mistral pays tribute to the iconic plant, but some may wonder if it should be a roadster. HotCar’s Michael Van Rankel revealed the real reason in his interview with Bugatti’s Deputy Director of Design Frank Hill during the debut of the Hyper Roadster at The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering, (check out the link to the exclusive article below).

Bugatti’s recent merger with Rimac Automobili eventually means the electrification of the French carmaker’s offerings. And so, as a celebration of the W16 feel, the Mistral should be something that gives a real feel to the driver, Hill told Van Runkle. Bugatti’s deputy design director thinks there’s no better feel, at least acoustically, than a W16-engined supercar with a roof.

True enough, there is still no W16-engined roadster in the Chiron era, and the Mistral is essentially an open-top Chiron. The last time Bugatti owned a roadster, it was still in the Veyron era, as the Grand Sport Vitesse version set a world speed record of 254.04 mph in 2013.

Bugatti installed a copy of the W16 engine in the Mistral found under the hood of the Chiron Super Sport 300+ and Centodieci. The W16’s four-turbocharged engine can deliver 1,580 horsepower, the same level of power as the Chiron Super Sport 300+ when it broke the speed record in 2019.

RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Bugatti Mistral designer Frank Hill describes how Aero influenced Roadster’s new Svelte lines

Chiron decapitation without trimming performance

Of course, the Mistral isn’t just Chiron’s that has a monocoque cut above the A-pillars. Bugatti worked hard to re-engineer the W16 Mistral to make sure its open-top design features a more rounded shape that doesn’t compromise performance.

Bugatti is targeting its roadster to reach a top speed of around 261 mph. At this speed, any open-top engine could become very uncomfortable, and a supercar would create a lot of aerodynamic drag and lift.. thus, Bugatti designers had to make many changes.

For example, the Mistral has a seamless design, with the traditional Bugatti C line gaining a three-dimensional interpretation. The front end is now more aerodynamic, as it can split the air more effectively than its predecessors. The Mistral’s “horseshoe” nose shape has become more pronounced, right down to the Bugatti logo.

On top of that, Mistral borrows the Divo and La Voiture Noire vertical headlights, but makes them funnel air through the wheel wells to prevent turbulence before the rear intake ducts. The Hyper Roadster also features various elements to ensure that the airflow can provide cooling and downforce simultaneously.

Source: Bugatti

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