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June 17, 2022 Bring A Trailer Auction USA

  • 1935 Bugatti Type 59/50S, "59002", current Bid: USD 250,000
Replica by Ray Jones, based on many original parts.

This 1935 Bugatti Type 59 was assembled by marque restorer Ray Jones over several years in the style of the Type 59/50S driven by Robert Benoist in the 1935 Grand Prix de l’Automobile Club de France. Originally completed in the early 1990s, the build included the installation of the supercharged 4,972cc inline-eight that is said to have propelled Benoist’s 1935 Grand Prix entrant after having carried Count Stanislaw Czaykowski’s Type 54 to multiple speed records in 1933. The car rides on Bugatti Type 59 works frame No. 2, which was acquired by Ray Jones from the closed Molsheim factory in the 1960s and was fitted with reproduction aluminum coachwork during the build. Bugatti components also include a four-speed manual gearbox, a double-reduction rear axle with a ZF limited-slip differential, a split front axle, De Ram hydraulically governed friction shock absorbers, semi- and quarter-elliptical leaf springs, and 19” piano-wire wheels of staggered width. A restoration performed by the seller, Ray Jones’s son, between 2015 and 2016 brought the car to mechanically operating status and included a repaint in blue with hand-painted numbering. It has since appeared at various Concours events including the 2017 Cavallino Classic, 2019 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, 2020 Boca Raton Concours d’Elegance, and the 2022 Palm Event at Mar-a-Lago where it earned best in show. This Type 59 is now offered in Stuart, Florida, with an FIA Historic Technical Passport, an authenticity report from David Sewell, photos from the Molsheim factory, photos from the restoration, copies of technical drawings, and a clean California title in the name of the seller’s father’s trust.

The Type 59 debuted in 1933 as a replacement for the Type 54 in anticipation of an Association Internationale des Automobile Clubs Reconnus rule change stipulating a 750-kilogram weight limit for the forthcoming season. Eight examples are said to have been completed, with power initially courtesy of a supercharged 2.8- or 3.3-liter version of the Type 57’s engine mounted low in the Type 59’s drilled chassis. After the model saw middling results in 1934, one of the chassis was fitted with a specially developed 4.9-liter powerplant previously used in a works Type 54 used to establish a one-hour world speed record in 1933. Based on frame number six, that repowered Type 59 completed 16 laps with Robert Benoist at the wheel in the 1935 French Grand Prix before retiring from the race and later becoming the basis for Bugatti’s Type 59/50B racers.

This build recreates Benoist’s French Grand Prix car using Bugatti Type 59 frame number two, which was one of four Type 59 frames and numerous other parts acquired by Ray Jones from the Molsheim factory in the late 60s. An aluminum bulkhead and coachwork were fabricated during the project based on factory drawings and period photos, with design features including a faired-in radiator and a riveted seam projecting along the tail panel. The body is finished in blue with the number 24 hand-painted on the tail, hood, and grille as depicted in photos of the original Benoist car.

The piano-wire wheels are joined by splines to drilled center discs and are secured by two-eared knock-offs. Blockley tires measure 5.00-19 up front and 5.50/6.00-19 at the rear. Braking is handled via cable actuation on finned drums with drilled backing plates and ventilation scoops up front. Suspension incorporates semi-elliptical front leaf springs, inverted quarter-elliptical rear leaf springs, and four-wheel De Ram shock absorbers, the latter of which use hydraulic pressure to adapt friction dampening to the speed of lever-arm travel.

The cockpit houses a single seat situated on the right-hand side and wrapped in black upholstery. The passenger side is fitted with an aluminum tonneau panel and houses an engine oil reservoir linked to a cowl-mounted oil cooler. Features include a single windscreen, a faired rearview mirror, a handbrake lever to the driver’s left, and a shifter located outside the cockpit.

The wood-rimmed steering wheel frames period instrumentation that is housed in a reproduction aluminum panel and includes a 6k-rpm tachometer and gauges monitoring fuel level, coolant temperature, and oil pressure. A Jaeger clock is mounted in the left side of the bulkhead.

The 4,972cc T50S inline-eight is said to be distinguished from other period engines by a lightweight aluminum sheet-metal crankcase, a larger supercharger mounted midway along the side of the engine, triple Zenith 48K updraft carburetors angled at 45°, and a divided cast-alloy intake manifold assembly. Features also include dual-overhead camshafts with helical-cut gears, hemispherical combustion chambers, a cast-iron cylinder block, dry-sump lubrication, and magneto ignition. The engine is said to have been acquired by Ray Jones after his discovery of its presence in a car that had been purchased by a customer in 1970.

Power is sent to the rear wheels via four-speed manual gearbox number four and a double-reduction rear axle that houses a ZF limited-slip differential and is also stamped with number four as well as 28/20 and 33/12 gear ratios. The tail-mounted fuel tank is said to be a reproduction fitted with Bugatti dual filler necks.

Frame number two is shown stamped on the rear crossmember above, and a VB logo can be seen stamped on one of the frame rails. According to Sewell’s report (below), the latter represents Bugatti subcontractor Brunon & Valette, who handled original production of various frame elements. The photo gallery below includes images of stamps on numerous internal engine components as well as stampings on the gearbox and rear axle and their respective internals, the De Ram shock absorbers, the leaf springs, the wheels, and various other parts. The six-page Sewell report is also included in the gallery and contains an analysis of components and their stamps. Also shown is the car’s FIA Historic Technical Passport and its most recent entry in the Bugatti Register. The car is titled using car number 59002, which is stamped on a reproduction firewall tag.

Photos taken at the Molsheim factory during Ray Jones’s retrieval of this car’s frame and other parts are shown above and in the gallery below. Also included are photos of the original Benoist car upon which this build is based as well as factory drawings. Images from the restoration are also provided, while footage from the project is included in a video below. The underside of the hood is signed by Michel and Caroline Bugatti as are two copies of included articles featuring the car. A copy of “Robert Benoist: Champion du Monde” by Roger Labric is also included in the sale, along with a “Pilote” arm band which is said to have been worn by Benoist in period.

More photographs of the car shown below.

The David Sewell report.

Restoration photographs.

Photographs of the original car, and of Ray Jones and the parts in the factory.

Various drawings included in the sale, not all of the T59.

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Rembrandt Bugatti

African elephant and young camel - Sculpture in bronze


May 13, 2022 Bonhams Auction: 'LES GRANDES MARQUES a MONACO' Monte Carlo

  • 1927 Bugatti T35 B, Chassis no. 4888. Engine n°: 202T from #4944, Estimate: €2,000,000 - €3,000,000
  • 1929 Bugatti Type 37, Chassis no. 37385, Engine no. 287, Estimate: €800,000 - €1,100,000

    1927 Bugatti T35 B: Offered from 47 years of private ownership.

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    1929 Bugatti Type 37

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  • May 25, 2022 Christie's Live Auction 21065 - DESIGN France

    • 1930 Bugatti Baby
      Estimate: 30,000 - 50,000 EUR

    aluminium, painted metal sheet and leather, the motor is electric. The dashboard is equipped with a control panel, the gearshift is on the right side of the seat.
    Size 56 x 180 x 63 cm
    wheelbase : 121 cm

    The Bugatti Baby is the faithful half scale replica of the mythical Bugatti Type 35 Grand Prix racing car that won almost all races between 1925 and 1927. Originally designed by Ettore Bugatti for his second son, Roland, aged 5 years, it was initially fitted with a combustion engine. It was later fitted with an electric engine and elongated, so that it could be used by children of 6 to 8 years old. Ettore presented this second version at the Milan Trade Fair in 1927, where it encountered great success that lead to the production of this ‘luxury toy’ in small series.
    The car was then included in the factory catalogue and exhibited at Bugatti retailers. Made of aluminium and sheet metal, it has a gearbox, a Bugatti-style dashboard and a leather seat. It can reach 15 to 20 km/h depending on the charge available from the 12-volt battery which drives the Paris-Rhône engine. Each presents a different number located on the sheet metal separating the backrest from the engine compartment. Its significant price - about 5,000 francs at the time - made it the ideal gift for wealthy customers' children. Ettore sometimes gifted one as a token of gratitude for regular clients. In this way some royal families, notably the Prince of Morocco in 1929 and the future King Baudouin in 1932, became happy owners of the model. Hergé immortalised this in the album, 'Tintin Land of Black Gold', in which the young Abdallah is given a Baby Bugatti by his father. The queen of children's car racing, which flourished during the 1930's, the Baby was equally at home on the Planches de Deauville board-walk or the Promenade des Anglais in Nice. Around 500 models were produced between 1927 and 1937. Today, less than one hundred are listed, in the hands of private individuals or in museums. One model can be seen in the Mullin Automotive Museum collection and two at the La Cité de l'automobile - Musée national - Collection Schlumpf in Mulhouse.

    Our model comes from Germany and was owned by Mr Carl Reichstein, a wealthy industrial who founded the ‘Brennabor' cycle manufacturing company at the end of the 19th century. The company became the major cycle manufacturer in 1900, at that time selling some 40,000 cycles. He then expanded his company with the help of his two brothers in the automobile industry with the "Brennaborette" tricycle (1906-1911) and among other products, two four-cylinder cars. His son Eduard took over the company after having spent eight years in the United States, where he was an engineer and designer-in-chief with Northway MotorCorp between 1916 and 1919 in Detroit. With this experience behind him, he returned in 1920 as automobile designer-in-chief in his father's company and was instrumental in making Brennabor the first automobile works in Germany to be fitted with assembly lines. From 1922 he became co-proprietor of the trademark Brennabor-Werke and was successful in developing several vehicles, notably the ‘Jewel’ 2.5 litre / 6 cylinder series in 1929 and a 3.4 litre / 8 cylinder vehicle in 1930.

    Remained in this famous family tied to the premises of the automobile industry, our Baby was ordered for the grandson of Carl Reichstein: Karl Ernst who made use of it in the property of Potsdam. This legendary toy is a rediscovery as it has not been in circulation for almost a century.

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    The date is June 5, 1925

    The location is the Parc des Princes, and the event is the concours d' élégance

    The photograph depicts a 4-cilinder Brescia Bugatti, bodied by the coachbuilder "La Carrosserie Profilée", the lady remains unknown, I'm afraid.

    To the right another example by the same coachbuilder, at the same event.


    May 7 - 8, 2022 Vintage Revival Monthléry France

    Vintage Revival including parts market. According to the photo (when was that?) quite some Bugatti parts for your project!

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    Until April 20, 2022 Bugatti Divo on public display Molsheim, France

    A Bugatti Divo is on display at the center square of Molsheim, and will remain there until April 20.


    March 27, 2022 Aguttes online Auction France

    • 1927 BUGATTI TYPE 35C (R)
      Chassis no. 38343, Engine no. 219, Estimate: 300,000 - 400,000 EUR

    • Rebuilt by a French expert of the brand in the 1990’s
    • Original engine, rear and front axles
    • Reliable car with a very nice patina
    • French historic registration title

    3rd August, 1924, “Sept Chemins” temporary track, south of Lyon, 9 am: twenty cars set off for the very popular Grand Prix de l’Europe. On the programme, seven hours of racing on a difficult and winding 23 km long circuit. If the Sunbeam Grand Prix cars are the favourites, the Delage 2LCV 12-cylinder and Alfa Romeo P2 are not to be outdone. However, the press and the public only had eyes for the new Bugatti...

    With its horseshoe-shaped radiator, “aeroplane wing» body profile with Bordino tip, forged front axle, cast aluminium wheels with integrated brake drum, and brake wire to hold the body screws in place, the Type 35 stands out from the start with a whole host of remarkably aesthetic and technical details. Not to mention its 2-litre in-line 8-cylinder overhead cam engine, derived from the Type 30 and 38 touring cars, which now develops 110 bhp. Although the Lyon Grand Prix was a resounding disaster (due to unsuitable Dunlop tyres), Ettore Bugatti was nevertheless successful. The new race car made in Molsheim made an impression and quickly became the car to beat. This was made all the more so by the fact that the boss, who was as good at marketing as he was at drawing board, was a pioneer in offering this genuine competition car for sale: any amateur driver, whether a novice or an experienced one, could drive it in Grand Prix races alongside the factory cars and top drivers. It has just invented the concept of the competition-customer car before anyone else. Thanks to this wide distribution, the Bugatti Type 35 (and its derivatives, with 4 or 8 cylinders, 1.5 l or 2.3 l, naturally aspirated or supercharged, and single or double overhead camshafts) won countless victories, building up the most successful record in the history of motor racing, including a World Championship title in 1926 and five consecutive victories in the renowned Targa Florio between 1925 and 1929. It is still the most legendary classic Bugatti and the archetypal Grand Prix car of the 1920s. The Type 35 C appeared with the evolution of the racing regulations, and was distinguished from the Type 35 «Grand Prix de Lyon» by its engine, still with a 2-litre capacity, but now supercharged by a Roots-type compressor, designed by the engineer Moglia, and which now brings the power of the sublime Bugatti engine to 150 bhp. The first supercharged Bugatti, the Type 35 C is for many the best and most balanced of the 35s.

    Around 340 Bugatti Type 35s were built up to 1930. While it cannot be said that the 35 was the best in every respect, it was the most complete and consistent. This exceptional quality gave rise to the myth of the Molsheim thoroughbred. In 1978, an early enthusiast bought a few pieces of the wreckage of Bugatti Type 38 cabriolet #38343 from a scrap dealer in Joué-les-Tours, Indre-et-Loire, including the engine (number #219), which was in apparently very good condition. With the help of one of his friends, an acknowledged expert on the marque, he finally decided to start rebuilding a Bugatti Grand Prix using this engine, identical to the Type 35, except for the lower crankcase. But if some people have already grafted a Type 38 engine into a Grand Prix chassis by modifying or changing this famous crank - case, our two amateurs have the intelligence to keep the engine as it is, by making specific spacers. The engine is rebuilt in England, by the specialist Ivan Dutton, who fits a new crankshaft, while the blocks are re-bored and the camshaft is restored. He also supplied an original front axle (solid model, unnumbered), while the rest of the parts are of English and French manufacture, like the chassis, and some parts are original, like the axle cases (number #344). The car comes back to life as a Type 35 C, with a large radiator made by Audoly in Nice and a compressor (the only new part bought in Argentina).

    The sublime black Bugatti, which took its first turns on the wheel in the early 2000s, caused a sensation at each of its appearances. It was entered several times (2002 and 2003) at the not-to-be-missed Bugatti event in Montlhéry, organised by the expert Jean-Michel Cérède, who was asked to examine the car in 2004. His conclusion is eloquent: «We are in the presence of a chronologically composite Bugatti, but as a whole it conforms to the configuration of the 1927 35 C model. (...) The car is now operational and I have had the opportunity to appreciate its operation at high speed on the Montlhéry circuit» (copy of the report attached to the file). The car is indeed particularly fast, and will be entered in a number of rallies and historic races (including the Journées d’Automne at Mas du Clos, the Grand Prix de l’Âge d’Or in Dijon, the historic Grand Prix de Pau, the Circuit des Remparts in Angoulême and Le Mans Classic).

    This car, registered under the identity of the Type 38 Cabriolet from which it borrows the engine, presents a rare opportunity to acquire a Bugatti built around three major original elements (engine, front axle and bridge). A real asset in the scale of authenticity of a Bugatti as defined by the Bugatti Owners Club. Its performance, its perfect working order and its inimitable patina will seduce the amateurs of the genre...

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    March 6, 2022 Silverstone Auctions RAF Museum London Season Opener 2022 UK

    • 1948 CDL Chorlton Special, Guide Price: £100,000 - £140,000

    Conceived as a Bugatti-based, Alta-engined, fifties Grand Prix car, this evocative single-seat racer has a fascinating history.

    • Built in Monoposto GP Style with Alta motivation. Well known documented history
    • Competed in many notable events such as the 1948 International British Empire Trophy Race and the Zandvoort Grand Prix of the same year
    • Recent appearances include the 2017 Goodwood Members Meeting, its second airing there after appearing some 67 years earlier at the very first Members Meeting in 1950
    • A recent class win in September 2021 at VSCC Loton Park shows the potential on offer
    • An enviable opportunity to experience those heady days of true wheel to wheel racing

    In 1946 Michael Chorlton, a well known film editor and director of the time, acquired the ex-Count Stansilaw Czaykowski Bugatti Type 51A from Jack Lemon Burton. Having been a member of The Brooklands Junior Car Club, his passion for motor racing was all-consuming with the desire to produce a successful racing marque at the forefront of his mind and so the Bugatti was steadily developed into the CDL ( Centaur Developments Limited ) Chorlton Special. Many aspects of the vehicle were reimagined with weight loss and aero dynamics a priority, the chassis was narrowed, the two seater body was replaced in an aluminium monoposto GP style and the suspension, alongside other mechanical aspects of the Special re-engineered. Such was the success of the build that the single seat Bugatti went on to compete at a number of International events including the 1948 International British Empire Trophy in the Isle of Man, the 1948 Zandvoort Grand Prix, Goodwood’s very first Members Meeting in April 1950 and Silverstone's Daily Express International Trophy the same year. Regularly seen competing with Altas, Alfas and ERAs the Chorlton Special was no slouch as illustrated by a 5th overall finish at the Goodwood Meeting.

    In 1950, Michael Chorlton lost his life in a plane crash and his Special was sold on, falling into the hands of a Mr Rigg who further developed it by fitting a supercharged Alta engine, DB2 back axle and a pre-selector gearbox, pressing it into action and successfully competing in VSCC events throughout the 1960s. As is the way with racing cars, the Special changed hands on several occasions in subsequent years, eventually becoming the steed of Roger Hart who acquired the car in 1994 minus the chassis. As a chassis was considered to be rather important, a replacement was sourced in the form of a Gino Hoskins T51 Replica Chassis which was modified to fit the car and accept a normally-aspirated Emeryson 2.5-litre Alta engine.

    In more recent times, the car has been campaigned by Nick Pellet and latterly Max Sowerby both of whom called upon the services of Gareth Burnett’s Pace Products, further developing the car with recent appearances at the 2017 Goodwood Members Meeting and even more recently at VSCC Loton Park in September 2021, achieving a first in class in the hands of Tom Hardman. The CDL Chorlton Special has a known history with many prestigious events under its belt giving an enviable opportunity to its next custodian to experience the thrill of racing in days gone by. If only it could talk!

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    March 16-20, 2022 Retromobile 2022 Paris, France

    Postponed several times, but now finally (hopefully) the Retromobile will take place!

    With usually a lot of Bugatti's, parts, miniatures, books and more.

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    March 18, 2022 Artcurial Auction, Rétromobile 2022 Paris, France

    7 Bugatti's on auction! Four of them from the Bruno Lafourcade collection:
    • 1920 Bugatti Type 13, Chassis n° 772, Engine n° 445, Estimate 250.000 - 350.000 €
    • 1925 Bugatti T35B Reconstruction by Ventoux Moteurs Engineering, Chassis n° 4617, Estimate 400.000 - 600.000 €
    • 1926 Bugatti 37A ex-Jacques Dufilho, Chassis n° 37211, Engine n° 114, Estimate 900.000 - 1.200.000 €
    • 1928 Bugatti T44 Faux Cabriolet par Labourdette, Chassis n° 44342, Engine n° 76, Estimate 300.000 - 400.000 €
    • 1928 Bugatti T35/51 Reconstruction "Petit Coupé Friderich", Chassis n° 4775, Estimate 250.000 - 350.000 €
    • 1935 Bugatti Type 57, replica "Aérolithe" body, Chassis n° 57104, Estimate 1.500.000 - 3.000.000 €
    • 1936 Bugatti T57 Galibier, Chassis n° 57363, Engine n° 57331/234, Estimate 250.000 - 300.000 €

    1920 Bugatti Type 13, Chassis n° 772, Engine n° 445, Estimate 250k - 350k €

    French title

    • Rare and interesting model
    • High quality restoration
    • Ready to drive
    • Surprising performance

    Around 2003, after restoring a Bugatti 57, Bruno Lafourcade and François Chevalier found themselves looking for a new project to occupy their weekends. " We discovered a Bugatti Type 13 in bits with Yves Ancelin. An engine in pieces, radiator, chassis, worm-type steering box, gearbox, differential, axle, four wooden wheels etc, " explains François Chevalier. "

    The car was pretty much complete… at least the first half ! " The little 1300cc 8-valve engine was rebuilt by Laurent Rondoni (Ventoux Moteur Ingénierie) with a hollow crankshaft. The lubrication was modified so that it could be lubricated under pressure using the original oil pump. Laurent Rondoni also adapted the metal plates between the radiator and the engine to make the front part of the chassis more rigid. This is a common and discreet improvement often carried out on Type 13 and 22/23 cars. With the mechanical side of the work entrusted to an internationally renowned specialist, " the rest " was carried out by Bruno and François in their spacious garage. This included the paintwork which was carried out by Bruno and François using paintbrushes and sandpaper. It took a lot of delicate work, matching the front and rear wings for example, to make sure the car was just right.

    The Type 13 was given a few discreet upgrades to improve its driveability. An alternator driven by the propellor shaft powers a starter motor and the lighting (while retaining the original acetylene headlights). A rev counter graduated to 4000 rpm, taken from a Delage, allows the speed to be monitored. " I once took it up to 3000 revs, " recalls François. " That must correspond to a good 102-103 km/h. But with the 8-valve engine, it's the car that sets the pace. It drives at 2 500 rpm, around 80 km/h. " François Chevalier added an adaptable Michelin spare wheel that could get the car to a garage in the event of a problem. " It's very clever " notes the Bugatti enthusiast. " This additional wheel is attached to the outside of the wheel. But I'm not sure how that would work at the front. " Following a year and a half of restoration work, Bruno and François set off on a trip into the Alps involving a dozen passes! " We only went into first gear once or twice. " remembers François Chevalier. The descents were probably more exciting than the ascents given the lack of front brakes !

    Inspected in 2004, this little Bugatti, one of around a thousand examples built, (with scarcely half a dozen remaining in France), was one of Bruno Lafourcade's favourite cars, as he could set off in it at a moment's notice. Well-known to specialists and equipped with French registration, this Type 13 offers a rare opportunity to take part in the Bugatti dream, with complete peace of mind.

    1925 Bugatti T35B Reconstruction by Ventoux Moteurs Engineering, Chassis n° 4617, Estimate 400k - 600k €

    French title

    • Reconstruction by the greatest marque specialist
    • Powerful and reliable car
    • Lovely patina after 25 years of racing

    For many enthusiasts, the Bugatti 35 is a legendary car, as prestigious as it is out of reach. For certain collectors, the 35 represents the Holy Grail. In 1959, François Chevalier gave his BNC Monza to Antoine Raffaëlli in exchange for a Bugatti chassis frame, believed to be from a Type 35 that had burnt and been scrapped in the Toulouse area. The astute young man also possessed a Type 30 engine and various elements from a 37 coming from the " de Sa Conte " Cooperage. The first part of a truly epic adventure was unfolding….

    A few years later, François Chevalier met Bruno Lafourcade, a fellow Bugatti fan. Their meeting generated a joint desire to rebuild this Bugatti 35, formerly owned by a certain Mr de Viscaya. It was at this moment that Bruno began to collect all the elements he could find, listing them and carefully storing them away. In September 1994, François sold all the parts he owned to Bruno on particularly favourable and friendly terms. Bruno took the Bugatti 35 chassis (4617) with large hubsto mount the paddle wheels, four aluminium wheels, front suspension and differential, drum brakes and numerous small parts. As the reconstruction began, the passion for the project grew. The efficient and indispensable Laurent Rondoni built a TC version engine with roller bearing crankshaft, connected to a rare, original Zenith 48 K carburettor. The starter and magneto conform to the original and it was given a Brineton dog box, limited-slip differential, and a hollow axle supplied by François from his stock of parts. It was starting to take on a certain charm.

    In 1995, the 35 was running and taken to be inspected. The two friends took part in a rally together in Alsace at the end of the 1990s. In 1996, the Bugatti, hand-painted dark red by the two accomplices, obtained its French registration. At the end of the 1990s, Bruno's son Alexandre discovered the Bugatti's potential and used it enthusiastically in numerous events. The 35 was doing exactly what it had been designed to do and Alexandre covered nearly 100 000 km under race conditions, demonstrating the car's capability and reliability. It must nevertheless be noted that the maintenance of this 35 by Ventoux Moteurs Ingénierie was carried out with no expense spared (all invoices will be supplied with the car, which comes with an FIA passport requiring renewal).

    After so much time and effort spent recreating this Bugatti 35, we would like to believe that nothing could happen to it. However, François Chevalier remembers an incident that could have had serious consequences. " I had a set of original wheels, " recalls the Bugatti and Moto Vincent enthusiast. " Back then, re-manufacturing was less common. I brought them back from storage in Dordogne and had them Magnaflux tested at Larrousse. Three of them were fine. The day they were fitted for the Tour of Sardinia, one of them broke completely, sending the car into the ditch ". Luckily, Alexandre and the 35 escaped unhurt.

    The Bugatti 35 has just been recommissioned by Raphaël Rondoni and his team at Ventoux Moteurs Ingénierie. It is important to understand that this reconstruction project has been carried out by discerning enthusiasts with the help of the greatest marque specialist worldwide, with no time or cost spared. We therefore advise potential buyers to examine in detail the work undertaken on this car, under the supervision of specialists who were in close contact with the original models, with the aim of keeping as close to the original as possible.

    Major participations by the Bugatti 35B in competitive events and demonstrations:

    • Vintage Montlhéry (from 1998 to 2002)
    • Rallye Bugatti Montlhéry (from 1997 to 2004)
    • Rallye Bugatti in Provence (2015)
    • Circuit des Remparts, Angoulême (from 1999 to 2006)
    • Grand Prix de Divonne-les-Bains (from 1997 to 1999)
    • L'Anneau du Rhin (3 times)
    • Virada Rallye (France, 2000)
    • Rallye Bugatti International (France, 1999 ; Great Britain, 2004 ; Corsica, 2007)
    • Mille Miglia (2000)
    • Targa Florio (2001)
    • Tour of Sardinia (2000)
    • Mont Ventoux Hillclimb (2002)
    • Tanneron Hillclimb
    • Prescott hillclimb (England)
    • Klausen Pass hillclimb (Switzerland)

    1926 Bugatti 37A ex-Jacques Dufilho, Chassis n° 37211, Engine n° 114, Estimate 900k - 1.200k €

    French title

    • Famous previous owner
    • Genuine Bugatti 37 with supercharger added by Dufilho
    • Original engine
    • Highly prestigious Grand Prix model

    A year after the successful launch of his Type 35, with its 2-litre 8-cylinder engine, Ettore Bugatti presented the Type 37 in November 1925. It was equipped with a 1.5-litre 4-cylinder engine and wire wheels, and had several other, less visible differences from the 35. It was, however, almost as quick, developing 60bhp and - with a weight of 710kg - had a top speed of 150kph. In June 1927, the Type 37A appeared. Its 1496cc engine had a supercharger (as on the 35B and C); power went up to 90bhp and its top speed to 175kph. It still had wire wheels and, as an option, 330mm drum brakes. The Bugatti Type 35 and 37 were the first racing cars to be offered for sale in a catalogue, with 287 of the 37 and 37A sold.

    Jacques Dufilho was born in Bègles in 1914, ten years before the first 35, into a family of pharmacists. In the 1930s, as a young man, he turned towards one of his first loves, for agriculture and breeding cattle and horses, before enlisting in the army for two years in 1934. On returning to civilian life, he went into the theatre, before being called up for active service in 1939. When he was released in 1940, he went to live in Paris, where he followed Charles Dullin's classes at the Théâtre de l'Atelier. After the war, he achieved his first success with comic sketches such as 'Victorine' at the Théâtre des Bouffes Parisiens. His career encompassed nearly 170 films and 60 plays, and he received a Molière, two Césars and many prizes and trophies.

    In 1942, he was first touched by the grace of Bugatti's cars, by the charm of their appearance and the beauty of their engineering. He began simply, buying a Bugatti Type 40 cabriolet in poor condition. He restored it himself, but in 1943 a breakdown brought it to a halt in Paris. Naturally, he went to the official Bugatti workshop in Levallois, where he was well received by the great Henri Hauswald, who had worked for Bugatti for over 25 years. Since 1939, Hauswald had been training his 'godson', Raymond Lemayeux, to become a highly skilled member of the clan of Bugatti mechanics. Dufilho hit it off with Hauswald's team and he acquired a Bugatti 44 to replace his Type 40. The actor remained faithful to Hauswald's Bugatti workshop and, after Hauswald died, to Lemayeux's workshop at the place du Palais Bourbon in Paris. Dufilho's consuming passion saw him buy several Bugattis, including a lovely 57 Stelvio cabriolet in black and pale yellow (57406).

    In 1957, he noticed a Bugatti Type 37 (chassis no. 37211 and engine no. 114) in poor condition, in the courtyard of Hauswald's workshop. It was one of the three Type 37s delivered in October 1926 and was displayed in Bugatti's showroom in Paris. Not knowing what to do with it, its previous owner, M. Balanche, a sculptor from Meudon, had it repainted by the Bugatti workshop. It was love at first sight, and Dufilho bought his sixth Bugatti. It would be HIS Bugatti, which he would customise, just like André Dubonnet's Hispano-Suizas and Robert Delaunay's Voisins in the 1930s or, more recently, Gianni Agnelli's Ferraris, with their special bodywork, uprated engines or personalised interiors.

    The restoration stretched over 10 years, from 1958 to 1968, with the work carried out as Dufilho was paid for his films and plays. The car was completely stripped down, the chassis checked and all the mechanical parts gone through with a fine-tooth comb, as he liked to say. The Type 37 270mm brake drums were replaced by 330mm items, as fitted to the supercharged Type 37A, and new 18in wire wheels fitted. Houdaille hydraulic dampers replaced the friction ones. A new engine-turned aluminium dashboard was mounted on top of the original dash, with the position of the instruments decided by Dufilho. The bodywork was in a bad state and was completely rebuilt in duralumin by M. Porte, a former panel beater at the Bugatti factory. The black leather upholstery was made up by the coachbuilder Polné. Under the bonnet, the aluminium engine block (no. 37211/114) was, of course, kept, but the cast iron cylinder block, a 1496cc Type 35 (69 x 100mm), was replaced by a 1628.5cc Type 49 item (72 x 100mm), in which every other plug hole was sealed. The pistons, conrods and crankshaft were new. Ignition was provided by means of a battery and distributor, while fuel was supplied through a Zenith 42 carburettor, with - from 1961 - a Bugatti no. 71 supercharger and the drive gear crankcase no. 265. The radiator was rebuilt by Delhomme in Levallois and the multi-plate clutch replaced by a stronger single-plate part. Front axle no. 255, gearbox no. 139, rear axle no. 350, marked 13 x 54. With the increased capacity, peak power was probably close to 100bhp at 5000rpm. In 1965, when first testing it, the actor declared that he had driven it at 200kph! Dufilho knew the Bugatti family well and was given the radiator cap by Lydia Bugatti.

    In the end, to finish HIS Bugatti 37A Special, Dufilho had to part with his 57 Stelvio. In the following years, when he was at his farm in the south-west of France, he used his Bugatti 37A almost every day, always having it scrupulously maintained by Lemayeux, who made a special journey to work on it every year. Christian Huet, a longstanding expert on the Bugatti, was also often present. During these meetings, the programme of work needed to maintain the car was decided, interrupted by an enjoyable dinner until late in the night and lengthy stories about Bugatti.

    In 1981, Dufilho's tax arrears had built up and he asked Huet to sell his customised Bugatti. It was duly sold at auction in Fontainebleau on 18 April 1982, after Lemayeux had given it a full service at his garage. Bugatti no. 37211 was then bought by a major Parisian collector for his wife. Sometime later, his mechanic replaced the Type 49 cylinder block with a new 1496cc Type 37 block, produced at the request of the UK Bugatti Owners' Club. To improve its cooling, a radiator was concealed in the tail of the car. 37211's last outing was the Rallye des Amis des Grandes Marques in 1987. Since then, the opportunity to use the Bugatti has not arisen, and it has lain dormant without being driven for 30 years. It then was acquired by a collector who was taking pleasure in admiring its intrinsic beauty rather than getting behind the wheel. Its future keeper will therefore have the pleasure of getting it running again (the engine is not seized) and bringing this unique Bugatti back to life, by taking part in rallies and shows for the marque.

    This Type 37 in known in Bugatti circles as the 'Dufilho 37'. It offers the provenance, authenticity and prestige of the model and has a clear and unique history, without having been subjected to the rigours of racing; rather, it has known the love and respect of its successive owners.

    Photos © Bernard Canonne

    1928 Bugatti T44 Faux Cabriolet par Labourdette, Chassis n° 44342, Engine n° 76, Estimate 300k - 400k €

    French title

    • Transparent history
    • Exceptionally well preserved
    • High quality mechanical restoration

    This Bugatti 44 Faux Cabriolet Labourdette is remarkable for its history and patina. What is even more extraordinary is that it was tucked away less than 50 km from Bruno Lafourcade's garage while he was looking as far afield as New Zealand for a Type 44. " A long time ago, Bruno and I owned a cabriolet 44 Vanvooren together. I discovered the parts of the car in 1961, " remembers François Chevalier. " This car stayed in Bruno's mind as we had never got it going. "

    Many years later at Rondoni's, François Chevalier came across a very rusty engine block from a Type 44. Laurent Rondoni told him that he'd had it for several years and that it used to belong to someone who had owned the Bugatti for ages. Rondoni was not familiar with the car however. On further investigation, Bruno Lafourcade and François Chevalier discovered the story of a Mr. Gros from Cavaillon. " It was the very same person that Antoine Raffaëlli had courted for two years in order to buy the ex-Trintignant Bugatti 51 with the Type 35 engine ! At the time, focused on the negotiations for the 51/35, Antoine must not have noticed the 44. " explains François Chevalier. Mr. Gros's daughter later inherited the 44 and her husband tried in vain to repair the engine.

    In 2010, Bruno and François made contact with them. They discovered an incredibly original, unrestored car. Fearing thieves, the radiator had been taken out but the car was complete. " The most incredible thing was that this car had also been sold by Trintignant senior in 1934 ! " continued François Chevalier. We can also add that this Type 44 left the factory in Molsheim around 1930 not to be sold for another three or four years, due to the 1929 financial crisis.

    In October 2010, after lengthy negotiations, Bruno Lafourcade finalised the deal with the heirs, right from under the feet of many international collectors. The 44 was taken for restoration and " everything that you see has remained exactly the same. And everything that you can't see has been restored ! " explains François Chevalier. The mechanical work was carried out at the workshop of Laurent Rondoni, Ventoux Moteurs Ingénierie, who rebuilt the 3-litre engine, refurbished the gearbox, front suspension and axle etc. Over numerous weekends, Bruno and François worked tirelessly on the car in order to preserve its extraordinary, original patina. The interior has also been kept as close to its original condition as possible, with just the upholstery on the seats renewed (the original cloth has been conserved under discreet fabric covers). The dashboard has its original, large rev counter and an accelerator pedal on the right. With a comprehensive file of restoration invoices (approximately 100 000 €), the " Buick of Molsheim ", as it has become known, runs beautifully (it runs to 4 000 rpm in 4th gear according to François Chevalier). With French registration, this elegant Bugatti 44 offers a marvellous opportunity to own a family car with transparent history.

    1928 Bugatti T35/51 Reconstruction "Petit Coupé Friderich", Chassis n° 4775, Estimate 250k - 350k €

    French title

    • Unique model
    • Spectacular reconstruction quality
    • Still being run in

    Inspired by the coupé 37 conceived by Ernest Friderich, the former driver and Bugatti agent, this evocation was the last project that Bruno and François worked on. We have to go back to 17 May 1968 to find the starting point for this car. For the sum of 2 800 F, Bruno Lafourcade purchased a Bugatti 35 n°4775, in parts and reasonably complete apart from the engine and gearbox, from " Démolitions Automobiles ", the business of Antoine Raffaëlli, based in Aubagne. These parts remained in storage with Raffaëlli for some thirty years before Bruno Lafourcade collected them, while he was buying parts for an Alfa Romeo 1750 GS that he was in the process of rebuilding at that time.

    In 2008, the two accomplices were debating what to do with this scrapyard wreck. " In my archives, I had seen a little coupé driven by Friderich on hillclimbs ", remembers François Chevalier. " And a well-known photo where Friderich, who was not a small man, was sitting on the front deflector of this car. " The decision was taken : it would no longer be a 35, but would become this little coupé ! Unfortunately, there was no rear view picture of the car and François Chevalier made lots of sketches before finding the perfect shape. The rest was simple : Bruno wanted to fit an 8-cylinder engine but all the momentum of the car comes from the " small " radiator. " We therefore opted for a 51 without a compressor that was less liable to overheating. We fitted a carburettor as was used after the war when compressors were banned in competition. "

    The indispensable Laurent Rondoni of Ventoux Motors Ingénierie immersed himself in the mechanical side of the project, and the Lafourcade-Chevalier duo occupied themselves with the bodywork. The wood trim was partially renewed by a specialist from Barbentane and the aluminium panel work by a craftsman from Beausset. The faultless construction of this automobile took several years to complete and required significant resources (comprehensive file of invoices supplied with the car). This Bugatti 35/51 " Petit Coupé Friderich " made its first appearance at the International Bugatti Meeting in Provence. " I think it's fantastic as it's a nod to the car but not in a rigid way. It's not a caricature. " concludes François Chevalier. " Ultimately, it's a fun thing, a pretty little monster. "

    This Bugatti, built with a level of care that must be applauded, is a fine tribute to Ernest Friderich, a loyal supporter of the marque.

    1935 Bugatti Type 57, replica "Aérolithe" body, Chassis n° 57104, Estimate 1.500k - 3.000k €

    US title, Temporary importation in the EU

    • Mythical model, vanished forever
    • Work of an exceptional standard
    • Genuine Bugatti 57 base
    • Probably the most beautiful replica in the world

    When the Paris Motor Show opened its doors on 4 October 1935, Bugatti unveiled one of the most spectacular cars of its day, if not of all time. Designed by Jean Bugatti and called the "Type 57 Coupé Spécial", it had a futuristic, Art Deco-inspired form, its long bonnet giving way to a compact cabin, the shape inspired by the cockpit of an aeroplane. This enigmatic machine was built on a Type 57 chassis, the model launched two years earlier which would give rise to the most successful Bugatti touring cars and would also excel in competition winning at Le Mans in the 24 Hour race. However, Bugatti was not yet racing the type 57's in 1935 when the Coupé Spécial created a stir at the Motor Show. So much so, in fact that it earned the name Aérolithe, an out-dated synonym for meteorite. This was a non-road worthy prototype, with no indicators or windscreen wipers and fixed windows. The exhaust pipes were fixed on simply under the bodywork. The car was painted an elegant metallic green, given the nickname "Crème de menthe" by the factory. Importantly, the coachwork was made from Elektron, a lightweight and highly flammable material that was difficult to work with, composed of an aluminium and magnesium alloy. With standard welding not feasible, the panels had to be riveted. Assembling the two half-shells required the presence of a central ridge which ran like a backbone down the length of the car. This technical necessity became a striking stylistic feature that was repeated all the way down the wings. This astounding coupé which became one of the most influential prototypes of all time, changing automobile design forever, was subsequently displayed at the London Motor Show. Then, several months later, it was finished off with all necessary parts at the factory so that it could be safely taken out on the road. During tests carried out by Robert Benoist in 1936 the Aérolithe was timed at nearly 195 km/h. The car then returned to England for a test drive through the streets of London.

    At the same time, Bugatti launched a version of the Type 57, known as the 57S (SC with compressor) with a lower body than the standard 57 in aluminium, with a more rounded grille and wind-shields. The most sporting version of this model was undoubtedly the Atlantic, its Jean Bugatti styling clearly inspired by the Aérolithe. The Atlantic has become a legendary car, for its style and rarity, and the three surviving examples are all part of important collections today. Back in the 1930s, these more modern machines made the Aérolithe obsolete and in 1939, on the cusp of the Second World War, the mysterious coupé disappeared. Some believe it may have been buried to avoid being requisitioned by the Germans, and others suggest it was dismantled for parts, at a time when Bugatti was not in a particularly prosperous state.

    The story could have ended there. But in 2008, Christopher Ohrstrom, President of the World Monuments Fund and David Grainger, restoration specialist, set out to make a replica of the vanishing coupé. The aim was to make it as faithful to the original as possible. They started by looking for a chassis that was close to that of the Aérolithe, believed to be n°57103, and discovered n°57104, one of the earliest in the series, complete with its engine, transmission and part of the running gear. For the coachwork, they studied all available photos on the computer in order to establish, as accurately as they could, exact dimensions of the car and details of how it was built, down to the position of the rivets on the central ridge and the design of the whitewall tyres. Using templates, the bodywork was formed out of Elektron, a particularly difficult procedure given the delicate nature of this material. The interior was recreated with its wooden dashboard and tubular seats covered in leather.

    Impressively faithful, the results attracted acclaim of the highest order when the car appeared in the specialised press. It was awarded the International Historical Car of the Year by the magazine Octane. The Aérolithe coupé recreation has taken part in major design exhibitions in American museums (Atlanta, Raleigh, Indianapolis and Portland) and has been exhibited at Quail Lodge, in Carmel, California. At the Amelia Island Concours d'Elégance, the car was awarded the "North Trophy for Best Coachwork" and "Best in Show & Peoples' Choice Awards" at Cobble Beach. Jay Leno, the famous American presenter, collector and automobile enthusiast, even produced a programme dedicated to this work of art, which included a test drive of the car.

    An extraordinary creation, this Aérolithe bears witness to the exceptional skill in producing the bodywork and the remarkable journey undertaken to create a faithful reconstruction. It allows us to admire, in a life-size and moving form, one of the most legendary automobiles in history, that has disappeared forever.

    This must be one of the very best attempts in history to bring a work of art back to life, to resuscitate a mysterious automobile that is now a legend. The quality of restoration and the work carried out is exceptional and breathtakingly beautiful in every detail.

    Lots from outside the EU: In addition to the commissions and taxes indicated above, an additional import VAT will be charged (5,5% of the hammer price for vintage/classic cars, 20% newer/modern motorcars).

    Photos © Bernard Canonne

    1936 Bugatti T57 Galibier, Chassis n° 57363, Engine n° 57331/234, Estimate 250k - 300k €

    French title

    • Transparent history, same family since 2006
    • Period, high-quality restoration
    • Superb factory body, 2nd series

    Introduced in 1933 and equipped with a brilliant 8-cylinder 3.3-litre twin-cam engine, the Bugatti Type 57 was one of the best Grand Touring automobiles on the market. Presented in this four-door, four-seater form without central pillar, the "family" 57 was called Galibier.

    The example on offer comes with transparent history, and it is notable that this car has come under Maitre Poulain's hammer three times before. Our 57 has the series number 57.363 stamped on the constructor's plaque. The car sold new to Mr Bouchon in January 1936 (réf.: Bugatti Magnum, p. 551), and is then thought to have belonged to the Swedish Embassy in Paris. Our Galibier left the factory with engine no. 251 but by 1964 was equipped with engine no. 234, taken from an Atalante, which it still has today.

    The coachwork is original, known as a "factory body" and has its plaque "Carrosserie Bugatti" (discovered after being lost for a while). During the 1960s, the car belonged to a collector from Alsace who kept it until 1977. It was then acquired by a marque historian who sold it in 1979. The car was also owned by the renowned expert Jean- Michel Cérède, before being entrusted to Poulain & Le Fur to be auctioned during the International Automobile Week at the Palais des Congrès in Paris on 14 December 1987. This was where the previous owner bought the car, then in good working condition, as it had been since the 1950s. Between 1987 and 1991, he undertook a full restoration, respecting the Bugatti's original configuration. A file of invoices documents the extent of the work carried out in period. Used regularly after that, the car didn't change hands again until 2006, when it came under the hammer at Artcurial's sale on June 12, to be acquired by the family it belongs to today.

    Driven regularly during the last 15 years, it has been the subject of serious mechanical maintenance, carried out mainly by Raphaël Rondoni of Ventoux Moteurs Ingénierie. In 2018, more than 23 000€ was spent on work to the hydraulic brakes, distribution and clutch. An inspection carried out in February 2021 confirms the quality of presentation and running condition of this Bugatti, which was restored to a high standard some 30 years ago. It is rare to come across cars from this era that combine authenticity and transparent history with such a serious record of maintenance, making our 57 Galibier 2nd series a special example in which to enjoy the unrivalled finesse of the Bugatti marque.

    More info


    January 9, 2022
    First all electric new Bugatti has a sensational 0.9 hp engine!

    As a Bugatti-enthusiast, I am of course proud of the 1000 times difference between the marque's smallest and largest engines: 12.7 CC for the Type 72 bicycle engine, and 12.7 litre for the Type 41 Royale. The difference would be even more if one would count the aero engines. I always wondered if there was any manufacturer that could better that....
    However, now it seems that the modern Bugatti makes that difference actually seem small! With their 1850 hp for the Bolide on race fuel and the 0.9 hp for this scooter, the factor is a bit over 2000!
    0.9 hp should give quite decent performance, as even a trained cyclest doesn't go much over 0.5 hp.

    The following article is more or less official, so, don't expect too much criticism there....

    Bugatti Goes Full-Electric With Surprise Bytech Scooter
    It would not be an over-generalization to say that many automakers are looking to the two-wheel market as a possible source of profit by offering electrification alternatives for city dwellers against the backdrop of the two-wheel industry boom. Even with this in mind, nothing could have prepared us for this surprise: Bugatti is getting into the two-wheel EV game, and it’s doing it with a scooter, of all things.

    Bugatti, one of the most recognizable, exclusive, and luxurious carmakers out there, known for its high-performance, pricey vehicles that are reserved only for the one-percenters, is making an e-scooter of the tamest variety. Before you think the French maker is selling out or playing down, don’t. “One look at the unique aerodynamic design and high-end appearance of the Bugatti electric scooter will tell you that this is not just your average basic scooter,” reads the product’s official webpage.

    Developed in partnership with U.S.-based company Bytech, the scooter was formally introduced at CES 2022 (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas. A press release was sent out at the same time, though not on the Bugatti official channels. This was a surprise release by all counts and a move perhaps meant to test waters ahead of a proper introduction, down to the fact that the Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook handles, @BugattiScootersNA, are still offline. But an official website is up, and it promises a scooter that will put all others to shame.

    The Bytech for Bugatti scooter is lightweight and foldable, which makes it a perfect first- and last-mile solution even for owners who live in a high-rise. It weighs just 35 pounds (16 kg) thanks to its frame of magnesium alloy, and it comes with distinctive Bugatti styling, such as the Bugatti logo and trademark color options, Agile Blue, Silver, and Black.

    The two-wheeler offers three riding modes, Economy, City, and Sport, with the Sport mode delivering a top speed of 18.5 mph (30 kph). In Economy, it can only go as fast as 9 mph (15 kph), while in City, it tops out at 12.5 mph (20 kph). Power comes from a 700 W (0.9 hp) electric motor paired with a removable 36V, 10 Ah battery that promises a range of 22 miles (35.4 km) in Economy mode. A full charge takes four hours, and the scooter is rated for a maximum payload of 242 pounds (110 kg).

    While the scooter doesn’t offer stellar performance – for a Bugatti-branded vehicle, mind you – it does get extra points for safety. It comes with turn lights, a bright headlight, and brake lights, as well as lit sides that create the impression of a floating deck. Because you can’t have a Bugatti without some type of showing-off, you get the “EB” monogram projection logo on the ground behind the scooter. Otherwise, how will people believe you just arrived on your Bugatti?

    The other features include a digital display for vital stats such as battery charge, trip, and speed, and a dual-breaking system for enhanced stopping power, with a front left-hand brake lever and rear E-ABS electronic brake.

    “Bugatti is at the pinnacle of automotive excellence,” Bugatti International Managing Director Wiebke says in a statement. “Partnering with a company such as Bytech gives us an opportunity to expand our reach in the electric mobility space with an experienced partner and a product that can be enjoyed by consumers around the world.”

    There’s a pre-order button on the scooter’s official page, but it’s not live just yet. Pricing for the scooter has not been made public as of the time of press, but it’s safe to say you should expect it to be higher than with a run-of-the-mill scooter. This is a Bugatti-branded product, after all.


    January 9, 2022
    BugattiPage wins Most beautiful Christmas card competition!

    I am proud to announce that my 2021 Christmas card won the competition at PreWarCar, a competition I was not even aware of....

    I just sent the e-card to all of my Bugatti- and other personal contacts, a tradition of about 15 years, with a newly designed Bugatti-themed card each year. Now Laurens Klein of PWC sent me an e-mail stating that I was the winner of a pair of PWC socks! See on the right, the socks contain a card with a text which is clearly inspired by one of Ettore's most famous quotes.

    For those of you who have not received my e-mail with the card (above): It is a very nice black and white photo, from February 1916. The photograph by Jacques-Henri Lartigue of a beautiful winter wonderland is taken in Paris, in the Bois de Boulogne. It shows a man on skis behind a Bugatti-designed Peugeot Bébé. The text “Merry Christmas and a healthy and prosperous 2022!” was added by me.


    January 8, 2022
    Bugatti - Rimac plans

    Mate Rimac presented his plans for 2022, in a short video.

    At the beginning of the video, a line-up of cars is presented, with 4 shrouded cars on one side. See above and to the right.

    At 27 seconds into the short clip, a sort of timeline formed by cars from the Bugatti and Rimac brands appears. On the left you'll spot classic Bugatti models, namely a Type 35 race car, the Royale, and the Type 57SC Atlantic.

    In the center are situated modern cars from Bugatti and Rimac, namely the Veyron and Chiron from Bugatti and the Concept_One and Nevera from Rimac.

    To the right are four shrouded cars that Rimac describes as Bugatti Rimac collaborations due in the coming years. One appears to match the silhouette of the Bugatti Type 35, suggesting there might be a continuation model planned, possibly with electric power. There also appears to be a track model of some sort, as evidenced by the Le Mans prototype-style rear wing on one of the cars. It's possible that this model is the production Bolide track car, which Bugatti has promised for 2024.

    A third model appears to be a new Bugatti hypercar, as evidenced by a signature horseshoe-shaped grille at the front. It's possible this is Bugatti Rimac's planned successor for the Chiron which is due to end production around 2024. There's also a fourth model, though the video changes to a new scene before the full silhouette can be revealed. Interestingly, none of the cars appears to be a crossover, suggesting that Bugatti Rimac will stick to sports cars.

    When might we get a proper look at one of Bugatti Rimac's collaborations? At the 3:12 mark in the video, Rimac says something might be shown as early as this year.

    Don't expect the next generation of Bugattis to simply be clones of Rimac models, like Pininfarina's Battista hypercar which uses the same hardware as Rimac's Nevera. Despite partnering with a leading electric-vehicle company like Rimac, Bugatti won't abandon the internal-combustion engine just yet. Both hybrid and pure electric Bugattis are planned within this decade. Rimac, of course, will stick with EVs.

    See the video here


    January 2, 2022
    Auction result

    Oldtimer Galerie Toffen - The Swiss Auctioneers, December 29, 2021

    • 1928/2012 Bugatti Type 35B Recreation by Pur Sang, Estimate CHF175,000 - CHF200,000, Not sold


    December 25, 2021
    The Road Less Travelled

    Henk Mooi sent me the link to the absolutely nicest Bugatti in the snow footage I ever saw! Click the link above or Here.

    It was made by Kidston productions, special Christmas edition!

    And don't forget to put on the sound!


    December 24, 2021
    New book!

    The devil drives Bugatti

    New book with a very different theme.... See the front and the rear cover with a brief description of the content and some reactions in the images below.

    The book is to be published on...

    Well, actually the book is not going to appear, at least not in the near future, because somebody has still to write the internals.

    Actually, the book is a box, made by my daughter Yamire as a "surprise" present on the occasion of "Sinterklaas", the Dutch holiday on the 5th of December, and the real ancestor of the American "Santa Claus".

    If anybody wants to write this book, please contact me, and I will publish it....


    December 8, 2021
    Auction result

    Bonhams Auction, The Bond Street Sale, December 4, 2021

    • 11933 Bugatti Type 46S Two-door coupé By James Young, Chassis n° 46587, Engine n° 16S, Estimate £ 350,000 - 500,000 (€ 410,000 - 590,000) Sold for £ 460,000 (€ 537,364) inc. premium


    November 9, 2021
    Auctions results

    Herbette Auction October 31, 2021

    • 1931 Bugatti T49 Torpedo 4-seater, chassis 49125, Estimate €350,000 - 400,000: Not sold

    Artcurial Auction, November 7, 2021

    • 2000 Bugatti T43A Roadster Pur Sang replica, Châssis n° "43260", Estimate €250,000 - 350,000 , sold for €300,000 (apparently without premium ?)


    October 30, 2021
    Auction result

    Artcurial Auction, Automobiles sur les Champs, October 24, 2021

    • 2005 Pur Sang 35B Bugatti replica, Châssis n° BO318, Estimate 180 000 - 220 000 €, Sold for 226 480 € inc. premium


    October 12, 2021
    Auction result

    Bonhams auction, The Zoute Sale, Belgium, October 10, 2021

    • 1994 Bugatti EB110 Super Sport, Chassis no. ZA9BB02EORCD39011, Sold for € 2,242,500 inc. premium

    The car was actually sold to a lucky guy in the Netherlands!


    September 24, 2021
    It's all for the money.....

    How far can you go as an automobile manufacturer to get some additional cash? And maybe a bit of publicity?

    We know that car manufacturers go a long way in putting their name on the strangest products, nothing to do with automobiles, of course. But what is the connection? If there is any?

    Bugatti is one of those, and markets a whole lot of stuff, none of them made by themselves; clothing (probably one of few things you might actually be able to afford), furniture, impressive yachts, perfumes (do they actually, or was that just in the Artioli Era?), HiFi speakers and various other stuff I don't really care to remember.

    The Bugatti Billiard (pool table actually, why not Snooker?) shown above has now actually been delivered for some luxurious man cave (probably nothing close to an actual cave, I wonder if the "man" part is correct). High Tech, self-levelling, carbon-fibre and etcetera, for a price like that of a house.

    Now, the latest thing introduced carrying the name of our beloved marque is the thing shown below. Apparently it is designed to give you a smooth skin on your chin, and is even heated for more comfort... A brand known for shaving equipment, Gillette, is producing it, and you can get it in the same colour as your Chiron. Or maybe you can buy your Chiron to match the colour of your razor?

    Don't ask me where you will be able to buy it or order it on-line, but those desperate enough, will surely be able to find it!


    September 16, 2021
    Wrong turn

    A pretty Bugatti can cost a few million euros. That doesn't bother Thomas Scholz, on the contrary: He buys one sports car after the other - and realizes too late that he is being cheated in the process. The case gives insights into the sometimes crazy world of the super-rich.

    By Fritz Zimmermann, First published in the German newspaper "Die Zeit", August 24, 2020

    Since ancient times, philosophers have discussed what it means for the identity of a ship to change each of its individual parts. In the end, is it still the same boat? And what happens when you build a second boat with the rejected parts: Which of the two boats is Theseus' ship? What's the original? And what about the copy?

    Rain drips from the sky when Thomas Scholz opens the front door to his property with a remote control. The door has no handle, the windows are also without handles, because of the risk of break-ins, the whole building is highly secured. What is behind the front door is too valuable, a few steps down the stairs, in a hall-sized showroom: The Type 35 Bugatti, for example, its value: around two million euros. Or the Bugatti Type 13, around one million euros. These are names that only say something to people who are very interested in old cars. Or have a lot of money. Thomas Scholz, in his early 60s, says of himself that he is "wealthy". He earned his living in the logistics industry. He doesn't want to read more about himself in the newspaper, not even his real name. Scholz is a man who is used to winning. Anonymity is a condition for him to tell the story he calls a "negative life experience".

    The showroom is located in a slight depression on his property, light falls through the curved glass front, a futuristic building that Scholz had built specifically for his cars. There are a total of 15 cars valued at »easily 20 million«, as Thomas Scholz says. There is also a Colani grand piano and photographic works by famous artists. And then there are the two cars in the center of the hall: the Bugatti Atlantic and the Bugatti Gangloff. He paid a good million euros for both vehicles together. They were his first vintage cars, vehicles from the 1930s. At least that's what he thought when he bought them 14 years ago. He now knows: The Bugattis were copied, they are copies. Scholz is convinced: He was betrayed. "Ripped off," as he calls it. That won't let him rest.

    The case of Thomas Scholz is a rare moment in which one briefly gets a glimpse into the otherwise closed world of the super-rich. Where vehicles worth millions are sold as if they were toy cars. In which old sports cars are seen as prestigious investments, they are looked upon in the same way as expensive works of art. And now a dodgy affair bursts like an uninvited guest into a dinner. It revolves around the longstanding head of the historical department at Bugatti. The man conveyed the replica classic cars to Scholz.

    It all started with the fastest car in the world. The Bugatti Veyron, 407 km/h top speed, 1001 hp, from 0 to 100 in 2.5 seconds. A car like from a quartet of cars (known game in Germany especially, the "trump cards"). The new price: 1.1 million euros. The Veyron was the first car Bugatti launched after Volkswagen took over the glorious brand in 1998. The company made only 300 of these. In the spring of 2006, on a sunny spring day, Thomas Scholz bought one of these vehicles. He remembers exactly how he went to Molsheim in Alsace with his wife. In 1910, Ettore Bugatti founded his automobile factory in Molsheim, and today Bugatti's headquarters are located there in a restored castle. Like all buyers, Scholz also had to pay 300,000 euros upfront for his new Veyron. Only then was he invited to the Alsatian castle for a test drive. During the journey, they were stopped by the police, fro driving much too quickly, of course. The Bugatti board member who accompanied him spoke to the police and the journey continued without penalty. Back at the factory, he chose the color and seats of his future car: his first Bugatti. Until then everything went according to plan.

    Scholz, who looks rather inconspicuous, sits at the table in his huge showroom and continues talking about the big day back then. The board member said goodbye after the trip and introduced them to the head of the traditional department, who should continue to look after them for the day: Julius K.

    He is the author of several standard works on the Marque and he is, for many, the greatest Bugatti expert today. This Julius K. showed them around the plant, they had a meal together, K. showed the couple pictures and miniatures of old cars. “I was amazed by the design,” says Scholz. Then K. said that one could even bring these old Bugattis back to life - and buy them too. You just had to have the right partner to avoid being cheated. He could establish such a contact for them. When they drive home after almost six hours, Scholz is delighted. "I thought: Wow, these are great cars."

    You don't get too close to Thomas Scholz if you realize that at that point in time he didn't have the faintest idea of old Bugatti cars. In poker, players who have a lot of money but little idea what they are doing are called dead money. Scholz is easy prey. Three weeks later, says Scholz, there was a second meeting at the Bugatti headquarters. In addition to Scholz and Julius K., a third man had come: Hero A., the owner of a vintage car workshop near Osnabrück. He is the contact that K. had promised. At the turn of the millennium, Hero A. ran Sunburst AG, a dot-com company that promised millions in profits by marketing the brand rights for the Love Parade and Sesame Street, and shortly afterwards went into bankruptcy in a spectacular way.

    It is unclear exactly how A. got into the classic car business. However, with the presence of Bugatti expert K., Scholz assumes that he can trust Hero A. They agree to buy two vintage cars that Hero A. is going to build for Thomas Scholz. Purchase price: one million euros. The draft contract has been submitted to ZEIT. Thomas Scholz, it says, commissioned A.'s company to build two Bugattis. And further: »They are replicas of the existing Bugattis of Ralf Lauren. “The Bugattis” will get an H-approval (oldtimer status) ”. "As many original Bugatti parts as possible" will be used for this. In this manner, the cars would meet the criteria of Pebble Beach. Once a year the biggest beauty contest for vintage cars takes place on the west coast of the USA, Julius K. is one of the judges there. The contract further states that K. will be available for advice and will act as an "arbitrator" in disputes. Scholz signs without hesitation. What can possibly go wrong under the supervision of Julius K.?

    Norbert Schroeder laughs happily over the phone when he hears the story of Thomas Scholz' alleged Bugatti classic car. Because there is a question behind it that he has had to answer almost every day for years, and yet again and again: What exactly is it, an original classic car?
    Schroeder is head of the Classic Cars department at TÜV Süd in Düsseldorf. If it goes to court or if there is any other dispute about the identity of a car, then Schroeder is responsible. An oldtimer is considered original, explains Schroeder, if it still has the original vehicle frame, the original axles, the steering wheel, the engine and the transmission. The so-called rolling chassis. The body, on the other hand, i.e. what the layman perceives as a car, can easily be renewed. In the reports, says Schroeder, the aim is to determine "the degree of originality": how much is left of the former car. It is the question of Theseus' ship. Reviewers like Schroeder have to answer this in the age of cars.

    In the case of Thomas Scholz's two Bugatti oldtimers, says Schroeder, the situation is clear. The "replicas" of the Bugatti from Ralph Lauren described in the sales contract with "as many" original parts as possible are just that: replicas. They would never get an H-license plate for oldtimers from him in the TÜV, as it was promised in the contract. The orientation on the criteria of Pebble Beach is irrelevant, because it is only about the appearance of a car (This seems to be incorrect in the original article, Pebble Beach only accepts original cars, in principle), Ed.. A specialist would have recognized immediately that the contract could not be adhered to. "From today's perspective, I would not sign the contract because it is pure fraud," says Thomas Scholz. From today's perspective. Scholz describes the time after the purchase as a frenzy. He flies to autoshows in the UK and to the contest in Pebble Beach. Julius K. takes care of the admission tickets. In emails, K. offers him other vintage cars, Bugatti miniatures, books and an old Bugatti wristwatch. ZEIT has some of the e-mails. A 1:8 scale model costs 6500 euros. The watch is 159 euros. He buys the book Bugatti La Gloire for 550 euros. Julius K. wrote a dedication to him in one of his books: "You may be the only one who came to Bugatti through me." Scholz says he bought accessories for a total of around 20,000 euros, he often paid in cash, so he almost never has any receipts. "We were hungry," says Scholz. “And K. wanted to sell.” Even before the agreed cars are ready, Scholz orders three more Bugattis from Hero A.'s workshop. He seems obsessed with cars.
    During this time, Scholz was given access to a reality that was new to him. The only admission ticket: your own Bugatti. Bugatti owners meet regularly in Germany. There are rallies in which only Bugatti drivers can take part. There are exclusive events at the castle in Molsheim, where the pianist Lang Lang played a concert a few years ago. And there were the so-called 400 drives, where owners of the Veyron could drive faster than 400 km/h on a test track under supervision and then have their name immortalized on a plaque at the company headquarters. For people who can buy anything, a Bugatti is a way to stand out from the crowd.

    For Scholz, however, it soon becomes clear that Bugatti can also cause problems. The two Ralph Lauren Bugattis are still not ready two years after the order was placed. The test drive is delayed several times. When the time finally came, in summer 2009, he traveled to the Black Forest to drive his cars for the first time at a Bugatti meeting. The test drive becomes a disaster. From the beginning, he recalls, the car vibrated unusually strong, and after a few kilometers a wheel came loose when braking and overtook him. Hero A. will later write to him in an email that "at no point in time" was there any danger. A few months later, Scholz had his supposed classic cars delivered anyway and placed them in his showroom. They have been there to this day, for more than ten years.

    The classic car market has changed. “It's no longer just enthusiasts who are interested in cars. There are also speculators,” says Norbert Schroeder from TÜV Süd. Prices have been rising for years, and payments are often made in cash or from foreign accounts. And so the industry also becomes interesting for a third group: the fraudsters.
    Last summer it became known that the Aachen public prosecutor was investigating a workshop operator who is said to have sold more than 30 fake Porsche sports cars. Old models believed to be lost were suddenly considered "barnfinds" or "heirlooms" turned up again and sold for millions.

    It is the first major investigation in Germany to pursue fraud involving vintage cars. "We are still at the very beginning in this field," said the investigating public prosecutor Jan Balthasar to the ZEIT. One of the anomalies during the investigation: Many of the owners are reluctant to be listed as victims in the proceedings.
    Norbert Schroeder also says that he regularly experiences that clients of his appraisals withdraw their order if it becomes foreseeable that their car is not an original oldtimer. It's about hurt vanity, but above all about preventing the vehicle from depreciating, he says.

    As with works of art, the value of a classic car is measured by how valuable people think it is. If the illusion is destroyed by an appraisal, the vehicle is only worth as much as the price of its individual parts. There are dozens of oldtimers, perhaps more, that are still admired at rallies, but which are little more than a pile of not-so-expensive sheet metal.

    Thomas Scholz says he is quite strict in this. Such people should be stopped. That's why he accepted the depreciation of his classic cars. He sued in court against Julius K. and Hero A., among others, and demanded repayment of 1.3 million euros. He never received the last three vehicles he had ordered. But the court found that Julius K.'s involvement in a "joint fraud" was not apparent.

    Hero A., however, was sentenced by the judges to repay around 750,000 euros to Thomas Scholz. But Hero A.'s workshop went bankrupt. In the bankruptcy documents, Scholz found an invoice written by Julius K., the Bugatti Pope. For the "acquisition of customer Mr. Thomas Scholz", it says, K. received a fee of 20,000 euros from the company. ZEIT has the invoice. Further documents show that K. also received monthly payments from the workshop. The "arbitrator," as he was called in the contract, was bought.
    Thomas Scholz finally filed a criminal complaint against Julius K. and Hero A. for fraud. But the public prosecutor's office closed the investigation after a few weeks. The allegations were partly statute-barred, says Scholz. In any case, there is often testimony against testimony, many of the multi-million dollar agreements were made orally.

    Scholz also turns to the Volkswagen ombudsman. Bugatti's parent company then started internal investigations, at the end of which the employment relationship with the head of the historical department Julius K. was terminated.

    The ZEIT would have liked to talk to Volkswagen and Bugatti about the background to Thomas Scholz's case and the involvement of their colleague Julius K. But the company declined a request for an interview from ZEIT on the subject, as did several former Bugatti top managers who were familiar with the case. Julius K. and Hero A. also do not want to comment on ZEIT's request. The industry is silent.

    One last phone call last week. Thomas Scholz talks about his Bugattis again. He now owns eleven. He's going to sell his collection, says Scholz suddenly. "I don't want to have anything to do with a scene like this," he says. His lifetime is too good for that. He has offered all of his Bugattis to a dealer, he only wanted to keep one. The rest is for sale.

    Only: what are they worth?

    The Bugatti Atlantic is one of the most expensive passenger cars in the world, when it's real....


    September 14, 2021
    Obituary: Bart Rosman

    On September 8, after a very short and sudden illness, our friend, Bugatti enthusiast and "Master of the engine rebuild" Bart Rosman died, aged 83.

    I got to know Bart over 2 decades ago, when I was a young Bugatti enthusiast with no Bugatti, and was admitted to the world of the Bugatti Club Nederland. Bart was one who accepted everybody with a true Bugatti interest, regardless if you owned a Bugatti or not. It was the enthusiasm that mattered. Bart was also an esteemed member of the Bugatti Aircraft Association, just because he was interested in the technology, and was present in various BAA meetings. The only time when he was less friendly, was when the subject came to replica Bugattis, of which many exist these days. He was fiercely opposed to these "look alikes"!

    Bart was more of a race driver than a slow classic-rally participant. In 1975 he was Dutch touring car champion (<2500cc class) racing an Alfa Romeo 2000GTV. Later he switched to classic racing, in his Ferrari 250 SWB and later his 275 GTB, both recognizable by their colour: Bugatti Blue. He also raced his Bugattis, first a Type 37, later a Type 35C, in International classic races. Most famous his participation in Monaco, somewhen in the early 2000's, when he kept racing while his car had caught fire.

    Bart did all of his maintenance and preparation himself; I once visited him while he was busy assembling his T35C's (roller bearing) crankshaft, a very precise operation indeed!

    On the top photo from a Dutch rally in 2016, Bart and his life-companion Tubien Wisse, who died in 2018. After Tubien died, we unfortunately saw him less often.

    Bart, we will miss your friendly and enthusiastic presence! I hope heaven will have a special place for the Bugattiste, preferably a race track!


    September 9, 2021
    Brescia Centenary 8-9-2021

    Kraig Mycock is in Brescia for the centenary and sent me some photographs.
    In Brescia are present (amongst others) David Sewell, Franco Majno and Patrick Friedli.


    The building on the original photo on the right, is now a Trattoria!


    Left: Franco and Patrick, Right: The British Brescia's in August at Prescott


    September 7, 2021
    Auction results

    Worldwide Auctioneers Auburn auction, September 3/4, 2021

    • 1938 Bugatti Type 57C Atalante Coupe Chassis No. 57659, "57641", Estimate: undisclosed: Not sold

    Witnesses report that the car did not reach it's reserve during the auction, but was sold after the auction
    Worldwide Auctioneers state on their website that it was sold for 1.765 M$ (including costs, apparently), they tried to counteract the various reports about the false identity of the car, as reported on this website and others, by disclosing a David Sewell report from 2000, as well as various documents with numbers on various body panels. That action did not help to convince buyers to actually bid...
    In 2000, not as much was known about the car as it is now. The details were disclosed in the American Bugatti Register and Data Book, 2018.


    August 22, 2021
    Bugatti models collect multiple awards and set auction records at Monterey Car Week

    The timeless luxury, design and performance of Bugatti’s past creations has once again received expert endorsement, as the marque sets yet more auction records and receives yet more awards at the most prestigious automotive gathering in the world.

    Celebrating its 70th anniversary, Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance has long been a showcase for Bugatti’s engineering excellence, stretching back to 1956 when the 1930 Bugatti Type 37 Grand Prix secured the marque’s first outright win with a ‘Best of Show’ accolade.

    In 2021, Bugatti’s trophy cabinet welcomed further prizes, collecting two highly prestigious awards, granted by world-leading experts. Moreover, two auction records for individual Bugatti models were set at the Gooding & Company and RM Sotheby’s Pebble Beach 2021 classic car auction.

    The renowned ‘Chairman’s Trophy’ is granted each year to a Concours d’Elegance entrant personally selected by long-standing chairwoman, Sandra Button. This esteemed award is granted only to the most deserving winner, which this year was the iconic Bugatti Type 35 B Grand Prix from 1929. Am I the only one to think this is strange? This particular car was at auction! Or was it some additional free (?) publicity? Ed.

    The Type 35 B Grand Prix is globally recognized as one of the most successful racing cars of all time. An engineering marvel of its era, the Type 35 dominated races throughout the 1920s and 1930s, with this particular example - Chassis 4938 - winning the 1929 French and Spanish Grand Prix at the hands of racing legends Louis Chiron and William Grover-Williams.

    With the automobile’s outstanding provenance and status as an icon of early Grand Prix racing, this Type 35 B was offered at the Gooding & Company Pebble Beach 2021 classic car auction and set a new record sale price for the model at $5,615,000, significantly exceeding the estimated auction value.

    Fast-forward 65 years from 1929, and a pristine 1994 example of the Bugatti EB110 Super Sport also set a new model record at this year’s RM Sotheby’s Monterey auction. As the definitive super sports car of the 1990s just 39 examples of the EB110 Super Sport were ever produced, making this 610PS, 351 km/h titan an ultrarare offering. As the first super sports car with carbon fiber bodywork, all-wheel drive and quad-turbochargers, this specific example set the new model record at $2,755,000.

    Joining the Type 35 B Grand Prix as a 2021 Concours d’Elegance award winner was the magnificently presented 1937 Bugatti Type 57S Corsica Drophead Coupé, which secured the top prize in the ‘European Classic Sports’ J-1 class. Jean Bugatti’s iconic Type 57 design was further advanced with the arrival of the Type 57S in 1934, featuring a re-engineered and sportier chassis powered by a re-tuned 3.3-liter inline eight-cylinder engine, resulting in a 40hp increase in output to 175hp.

    The model was key to solidifying Bugatti’s prominence as the definitive luxury and performance automobile manufacturer of the period, as the Type 57S was able to reach a top speed of 120mph – the fastest French production car of the time. Proving itself on track, Type 57S derivatives would secure three Grand Prix victories alongside the overall 24 Hours of Le Mans victory in 1937 and 1939.


    August 22, 2021
    Auctions results

    RM Sotheby's Monterey auction Monterey, August 13/14, 2021

    • 1937 Bugatti Type 57 Cabriolet, Chassis No. 57156, Engine No. 48: Sold for $665,000
    • 1994 Bugatti EB110 Super Sport, Chassis No. ZA9BB02E0RCD39015, Engine No. 107: Sold for $2,755,000
    • 2008 Bugatti Veyron 16.4, Serial No. 066, Chassis No. VF9SA25C78M795066: Sold for $1,545,000

    Gooding & Co Pebble Beach auctions, August 14/15, 2021

    • 1928 Bugatti Baby, "chassis" 358 A, Estimate $100,000 - $125,000, Sold for $125,000
    • 1929 Bugatti Type 35B Grand Prix, Chassis 4938, Engine 192T, Estimate: $3,500,000 - $4,500,000, Sold for $5,615,000
    • 1934 Bugatti Type 57 Galibier, Chassis 57224, Estimate $200,000 - $225,000, Sold for $179,200


    March 3, 2022 Bonhams', Amelia Island Auction USA

    • 1938 Bugatti Type 57C Stelvio Gangloff
      Chassis no. 57748, Engine no. C51, Estimate: US$1,300,000 - US$1,700,000

    • Dual Throat Updraft Stromberg UUR-2 Carburetor
    • 170bhp at 5,500rpm
    • 4-Speed Cotal Pre-Selector Manual Transmission
    • Semi-Elliptic Leaf Springs with Rigid Front Axle – Live Rear Axle
    • 4-Wheel Lockheed Hydraulic Brakes

    • Long term North American ownerships, including more than 40 years with Miles Coverdale
    • An original supercharged Bugatti
    • Extensively researched by marque historian Pierre-Yves Laugier
    • Desirable, enjoyable Stelvio Cabriolet coachwork
    • The subject of a Robert Coucher article in Octane Magazine, June 2015

    THE BUGATTI TYPE 57
    The Type 57 Bugatti, introduced in 1934, marked Jean Bugatti's emergence as Bugatti's leader and creative force. It was the first new model built under his direction and it incorporated many features that were new to Bugatti. Its dual overhead camshaft eight-cylinder engine had dimensions of 72x100mm, offering 3,257cc displacement. The crankshaft ran in five main bearings. The camshafts were driven by a train of helical-tooth gears at the engine's rear with a further crankshaft bearing behind them. Finger cam followers minimized side thrust on the valve stems.

    The Type 57 also marked Bugatti's first use of a transmission fixed to the engine crankcase and a single plate clutch. The top three gears in the four-speed gearbox were constant mesh. Jean created a novel independent front suspension system using transverse leaf springs for the first two examples of the Type 57 before Le Patron spied it and insisted it be replaced by a proper Bugatti hollow tubular live axle. Thenceforth suspension was traditional Bugatti semi-elliptical front and reversed quarter-elliptical rear leaf springs with cable-operated mechanical drum brakes.

    Much of the Type 57's commercial success may be attributed to Jean Bugatti's sensitive, flowing coachwork, which graced the most famous of the chassis' examples. Atalante two-seat coupé, Ventoux four-seat coupé, Stelvio cabriolet and the Galibier sedan vied with the best of France's and Europe's formidable coachbuilders' creations and comprised the bulk of Type 57 production. Bugatti's clients could have the best, but overwhelmingly they chose Jean Bugatti's designs on the Type 57.

    Despite financial travail, development of the Type 57 continued with the introduction of a stiffened frame and rubber-mounted engine along with the supercharged 160hp Type 57C in 1936. In 1938 the nearly unthinkable happened in Molsheim, when Bugatti finally adopted Lockheed hydraulically actuated brakes and replaced the beautiful and lightweight but expensive aluminum-spoked wheels and brake drums with Rudge-Whitworth center-lock wire wheels and separate brake drums.

    THE MOTORCAR OFFERED
    This incredibly beautiful Bugatti has a complete provenance from new as researched by noted historian and marque authority Pierre-Yves Laugier.

    The car was originally ordered by a true patron of Bugatti, Albert Brenac, who had begun his relationship with the brand with the acquisition of a Type 35 in 1926. Mr. Brenac's own story may well reflect his passion for engineering and performance as from his teenage years, he had begun his career as a test pilot for Avions Voisin and during the first world war he had been one of the first to fly a Voisin bombers on night raids. Born in a village in the south of France, Labastide Rouairoux, Brenac built a textiles business close to Toulouse after the war.

    By the late 1930s, his interests had migrated from the Spartan Grand Prix car to touring version Bugattis. A Type 49 was ordered, then replaced with an unblown 57 (chassis 57530) in November 1937. By the following summer on, July 29, 1938, Brenac placed a new order with regional Bugatti licensee Leyda of Toulouse for a supercharged version.

    His order, number 1010, provided for a 57C which left the factory a month later on August 30 destined for Gangloff to receive the Cabriolet coachwork it still wears to this day. The factory register records the car to have been completed and ready for delivery on October 21, 1938. Costing 99,840 French Francs, Mr. Brenac's new Bugatti was registered care of his textile works in the month leading up to its completion.

    True to form, Mr. Laugier's diligent sleuthing lead him to Albert Brenac's son, Guy, who recalled both his father and Leyda travelling to the Molsheim works to collect the car. He recalled Brenac Senior enjoying the car immensely, though the intervention of the war curtailed some of its use in the eight years he kept it. Through this period its maintenance was either with a local garagiste "Olayet" or for more serious matters it returned to Leyda's premises. Latterly, he moved his business to Cannes on the French Riviera towards the end of 1944, and it was there that he met the second custodian of the Bugatti, a Monsieur Helle.

    Rather sadly M. Helle did not enjoy the car for long, perhaps put off by an early mechanical failure during which the 'blower' took in water and damaged the engine. He parted with car on September 24, 1946, selling it to Charles Ehrmann of Nice, a teacher. Now being in the region of famed Nice Bugatti agent Friderich, who had been with Ettore from the company's founding, hearsay passed down through its first long term U.S. owner records that the car was taken to him and overhauled in this period.

    Ehrmann's custody was also brief, for by the spring of '47 the car had passed into the hands of a real sporting car enthusiast, Albert Benmussa of Lyon. Like Brenac, Benmussa was also in the textiles business, specializing in silk; however more and more in this era he began to trade old cars. Benmussa was also a key player in the popular post war Lyon-Charbonnière Rallyes, and is known to have campaigned 57748 on the 1950 edition. He is thought to have shared the driving with a Mr. Campenon.

    An image of the car in this period is shown on these pages and is the earliest surviving photo of the 57C, seemingly depicting its original guise of two tone blue paintwork and sporting wheel discs. For this rally it wore race number 8. Another known competitive outing came on September 7, 1952, when the car was entered on the "Côte de la Rochette" races in Hauteville, in the Ain department of France.

    Sometime in the period of 1952-3 the Bugatti received a complete engine rebuild in the workshops of Marcel Piottin, who before the war, had been the mechanic in chief at Bugatti agent Monestier of Lyon. Soon after, he set up his own shop and assisted many former company clients in the area. Again, Mr. Laugier's fastidious research led him to meet M. Piottin's son who worked with his father and recalled working on Benmussa's engine. At this point, perhaps to assist cooling but more likely simply to give the car the appearance of its later 57 models and 'S' series cars, the lower panels of the car's hood received the vented panels still present on the car today. At the same time, it also was fitted with a windshield washer and front shock absorbers.

    Benmussa retained the Bugatti until 1956, when on April 3 it was sold to François Kresser, at which point it made its first major location move to the Paris suburb of Neuilly sur Seine. It was there that it was seen first by noted American Bugatti connoisseur, Miles Coverdale. According to his own recollections he acquired the car and on December 2, 1957 registered it in Grenoble, France, where he was working at the time.

    It wasn't long before Coverdale returned to America and brought the Supercharged Bugatti with him to his home on Long Island, where it would become a well-known fixture in the post war Bugatti scene. As well as being used regularly by him, it also spent some time on exhibition at Austie Clark's Long Island Auto Museum in the Hamptons.

    Coverdale once recounted to the late Hugh Conway that after years of Benmussa's ebullient use of the car, that it had required another rebuild, this time by Henri Hauswald in Paris, Benmussa having blown the engine on the autobahn in Germany!

    All noted authorities attribute the absence of the expected sequence of chassis and engine number on the upper crankcase it wears today to date from this second rebuild and believe that during its rebuild of the original engine, this component was simply replaced by an unmarked new/old stock part from the Bugatti works/factory which still supplied such things in those days.

    Miles Coverdale is a name that resonates strongly in Bugatti circles as one of the pioneering collectors of the marque, and over the course of his life he owned numerous Pur Sang cars, including one of the Le Mans Type 50 Team cars and a Type 55. As an aside, he was directly descended from Myles Coverdale, the first person to print a fully translated English literature version of the bible in the UK in 1535.

    Coverdale retained the car until he passed in 2002, and was still seen to be using the car in his twilight years, the car by now having been painted a 'putty' grey color. After this it was acquired by local Greenwich based Bugatti enthusiast Desmond Fitzgerald.

    Upon acquisition, Mr. Fitzgerald returned the Bugatti to its original blue livery, albeit preferring it to be in a single Royal Blue hue, and had the car reupholstered in a matched dark blue hide. On its completion in 2004 he sold the car to the penultimate owner - a marque aficionado - who enjoyed the car socially entering it - as he did - in the 2010 American Bugatti Club 50th Anniversary Tour. In 2015 it sold for $1,595,000 at Bonhams Greenwich, Connecticut Auction to the current owner where it joined a noted collection of pre and post war sports-racing cars.

    As evidenced from its visual presentation, even among the more commonly produced coachwork designs each and every car has its own personality. In the opinion of Bonhams specialists, this is a particularly good looking example of Gangloff's late Cabriolets.

    For his June 2015 article, ace car journalist Robert Coucher, International Editor at Octane Magazine described the car as a 'classis expression of the pur sang' adding 'the straight eight's vitality fizzes through the chassis and up through your feet to your fingertips via the steering wheel, and the roar from the exhaust is intoxicating. The Bugatti bellows with intent so there's no real need to resort to using those twin horns mounted in the front bumpers - everyone can hear you coming!

    With its sensational looks, thoroughbred pedigree, and supercharged performance, this highly desirable late series 57C offers an eminently usable way to experience the Bugatti Legend.

    More info


    March 4, 2022 Gooding & Company, Amelia Island Auction USA

    • 1939 Bugatti Type 57C Galibier
      Chassis 57752, Engine 4C / 57476

    More info


    March 5, 2022 RM Auctions, Amelia Island Auction Florida, USA

    • 1937 Bugatti Type 57 Cabriolet
      Chassis 57156, Engine 48, Estimate: €550,000 - €700,000
    • 1994 Bugatti EB110 GT Prototype, Chassis No. ZA9AB01E0NCD39012
      Estimate: $2,000,000 - $2,500,000 USD
    • 2019 Bugatti Chiron Sport, Identification No. VF9SP3V34KM795215
      Estimate: $3,000,000 - $3,300,000 USD | Offered Without Reserve

    1937 Bugatti Type 57 Cabriolet

    • Exceptional, exquisitely detailed restyled coachwork
    • Mechanically upgraded, including hydraulic brakes, in-period
    • Beautifully presented, concours-winning Alan Taylor restoration
    • Documented by marque historians Pierre Yves-Laugier and Kees Jansen; accompanied by history file

    The Bugatti Type 57, with its Jean Bugatti-developed chassis and its powerful, racing-derived dual-overhead cam 3.3-liter inline-eight motor, is in many respects the ideal prewar grand touring car. Yet the attitude and character of a given example varies greatly depending on which of the profusion of body styles, from avant-garde roadsters to luxurious saloons, with which it was fitted. This car, Type 57 chassis number 57156, has the distinction of wearing multiple configurations in-period—including an uncommonly seen two-seat cabriolet body.

    The records of French Bugatti historian Pierre-Yves Laugier note that chassis number 57156 was assembled in June 1934 for Belgian customer, mill owner, and sportsman Frederic Deflandre, with engine number 48. This rolling chassis was bodied by Bugatti as their Galibier, a four-door sedan, on 29 June 1934, and delivered through Parisian agents Bucar the same day.

    In 1936 the car was rebuilt for Mr. Deflandre by the factory, with a new, updated second-series frame of the same number, 57156, still paired with an engine bearing number 48. This car remained with Mr. Deflandre until April 1938, at which point it is believed to have been traded to the Belgian coachbuilders d’Ieteren toward a new body for his new Bugatti.

    A local Belgian coachbuilder then produced a new two-passenger cabriolet body for 57156. The identity of the shop has never been conclusively established; Dutch Bugatti historian Kees Jansen attributes the work to Paul Nee, although no documentary proof has been found. It may well have been d’Ieteren themselves, and indeed, the work bears some resemblance to a drophead body d’Ieteren constructed on chassis 57589. It is important to note that at this time the car was also upgraded to the latest and best specifications, including the installation of hydraulic brakes.

    The car remained in Antwerp for many years, then was acquired by the famous Bugatti dealer Jean de Dobbeleer, still on a 1930–40 Belgian registration 154486. Mr. de Dobbeleer claimed that the car had been traded in by a priest, Abbé Dubois de Sévry, to whom it had been donated by a Mr. Cadans. Inspection of the car’s numbers by Mr. Laugier indicates that the rear axle and gearbox are both original and authentic replacements from other Type 57s, likely dating to de Dobbeleer’s ownership.

    The Bugatti was subsequently exported to the United States in 1955 by Gene Cesari for Porsche dealer Jack Fritsche, passing next to Al Wall and, in 1958, to Joseph Fine of Silver Spring, Maryland. Mr. Fine began restoring the Bugatti but in the 1960s was distracted from the work, and the dismantled car was stored on his property until his death in 2003. It was then sold by his widow; its next owner elected to have it fully restored by Alan Taylor Company of Escondido, California.

    As part of its total restoration, the car was reimagined with new fenders, door skins, hood, and trim, beautifully hewn in aluminum by Mr. Taylor’s employee Edouard de Vaucorbeil; these subtly reworked elements were inspired by the most alluring of in-period Continental design, artfully incorporating elements that instantly recall the likes of Gangloff. The finish of the leather, woodwork, and paint is all spectacular and a tribute to its restorers’ craftsmanship. Exquisite details, such as the addition of a wine basket and beautifully crafted fitted luggage (which stow vertically behind the seats), as well as a Type 57C-style dashboard—to say nothing of the intricately turned firewall and engine beneath the hood—are found wherever one looks.

    In its present form the cabriolet has been proudly exhibited at several concours d’elegance, including several times at Amelia Island; the annual La Jolla Concours, where it was judged Best of Show Pre-war in 2013; and Keels and Wheels, where it received the People’s Choice award in 2014. Further, it has been a First Prize winner (number 3176) in Classic Car Club of America National judging.

    With its stunning restyled coachwork, which has been maintained in excellent, restored condition, this well-documented Type 57 embodies the engineering excellence and high style for which vintage Bugattis are rightly known.

    According to my files, this Bugatti was also on auction by RM at their Monterey auction, August 14, 2021, and sold there at $665,000

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