2002 Bugatti 16/4 Veyron Preproduction

2002 Bugatti 16/4 Veyron Preproduction

2002 Bugatti 16/4 Veyron Preproduction

Built before production, two copies of the Veyron’s prototype were displayed at major autoshows and not tested by the press. It was third and final Veyron phase before the delayed production version finally commenced in 2005.

Two prototypes were unveiled in 2003 at a lavish ‘Art de Bugatti’ party in Monaco alongside 40 classic Bugattis. Both closely resembled the eventual production versions, but were different in detail.

Compared to the previously seen concepts, these new versions had many modifications which were reflected in the 2003 production model. Most of these are focused on aerodynmics and cooling, two essential ingredients for a 250+mph supercar.

Compared to last 16-4, the wheelbase was extended 50 millimeters to 2700mm (106.3). The extra length is entirely used to increase cabin space.

Inside, a hi-fi system from Dieter Burmester was specially designed for high fidelity. The best possible component layout was agreed upon with Bugatti when the monocoque bodyshell was under development.

The aerodynamics were heavily developed for this version. The front air inlet apertures were optimized for engine & brake cooling. Additionally, body lift is kept under control at high speeds with an automatically extending rear spoiler, fully paneled under tray & a diffuser. Cooling ducts for the engine are located underneath the spoiler. After the engine is shut off, the spoiler lifts to help warm air escape the engine bay.

Not surprising, the 16-4 adopted Michellin’s PAX technology. This allows for continuous tire pressure monitoring and run-flat properties.

The W16 alloy block engine is a true mark of innovation. Two exceptionally narrow V8 blocks are combined at an angle of 90 degrees. The W layout provides for a generous engine capacity from a compact unit. Continuously variable electro-hydraulic camshaft is operational at all times. This W16 mated to an all new seven speed gearbox. Gear shifts take place sequentially at paddles behind the steering wheel. The patented double clutch transmission shifts from one gear to another within 200 milliseconds.

Despite being ragged on by the press for being late, the Veyron project eventually fulfilled all its goals. The first production versions were on the streets in 2005.

It is thought that two preproduction cars were completed for the Monaco Launch in 2003 and Art de Bugatti display. One of these may have been sold to customer in the UAE.

In Detail

typeSeries Production Car
released at2003 Frankfurt Motor Show
engineQuad Turbo W16
valvetrainDOHC 4 Valves / Cyl w/VVT
displacement7993 cc / 487.8 in³
bore86 mm / 3.39 in
stroke86 mm / 3.39 in
power746.5 kw / 1001.1 bhp @ 6000 rpm
specific output125.25 bhp per litre
torque1250 nm / 922.0 ft lbs @ -3300 rpm
driven wheelsMid Engine / 4WD
front tiresPAX 245/690R520
rear tiresPAX335/710R540
front wheelsF 52 x 23.5 cm / 20.5 x 9.3 in
rear wheelsR 54 x 32.5 cm / 21.3 x 12.8 in
wheelbase2700 mm / 106.3 in
front track1723 mm / 67.8 in
rear track1632 mm / 64.3 in
length4466 mm / 175.8 in
width1998 mm / 78.7 in
height1206 mm / 47.5 in