Introduced in 1922, the Type 30 was the first production Bugatti to feature an Inline-8 . The engine was placed on a chassis similar to that of the Type 23. At the time Bugatti opted to move to a small two-liter engine to make the car more saleable, lighter and cheap. The engine capacity also made the Type 30 eligible for Grand Prix racing, which was a new direction for the marque.
Despite the modest engine capacity, the power output was still remarkable thanks to the triple-valve arrangement. Also benefiting the Type 30 was good road handling, braking and steering which was common throughout the marque.
The Type 30 was also the first Bugatti to have front brakes. On top of this, a specially designed master cylinder allowed for hydraulic assistance. These brakes were highly innovative for period and were also used in racing on the Type 32 Tank, Type 30 GP and the Type 29/30.
A few racing versions of the Type 30 were constructed and ran quite successfully at the 1922 French Grand Prix at Strasbourg. These cars retained similar mechanicals to the road-going cars and featured bullet like bodywork. Later versions of the Inline-8 race cars were the Type 32 Tank and the Type 29/30 Indianapolis.
What the Type 30 offered was a roadcar which very closely resembled its racing counterparts. This was much unlike the competition at the time, who made road-going models which approximated previous race cars. This is yet another example of how advanced Bugatti’s design and construction methods were.