Even More Exclusive
When it comes to the ultimate extreme sports car on the planet, most auto aficionados will think of the Bugatti Chiron. With enormous power and a top speed north of 260 mph, this car resides at a different level than practically any other. However, Bugatti felt it could make a special version that would not only be more exclusive but also offer better handling and performance. Introducing the Bugatti Divo, which made its world debut at The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering.
Made for Corners
Named for the French racing driver and two-time Targa Florio winner Albert Divo, this new model is based on the Chiron. But where the Chiron is built for straight-line performance, the Divo was developed to be more agile, optimized for exceptional handling on winding roads or the track.
“Our task was to develop a vehicle which would look different from the Chiron but still be immediately recognizable as a Bugatti,” said Achim Anscheidt, director of design at Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S. “For us designers, this meant that the three key style elements of Bugatti had to remain in place: the horseshoe-shaped front grille, the typical Bugatti signature line along the sides of the vehicle and the characteristic fin that defines the longitudinal axis of the car when viewed from above, which was derived from the Type 57 Atlantic.”
Although most folks around the globe have not seen a Chiron on the road, those who have will instantly see that the Divo is something different and special. The new vertical front lights feature daytime running lights on the outer edge, giving the Divo an appearance of greater width. With a light opening only 1.375 inches deep, the extremely compact, lightweight LED headlights provide a new signature look. The horizontal split into a lower carbon and an upper matte silver section also makes the Divo look lower and wider.
At the rear of the Divo are all new 3-D lights incorporated into the rear grille. Produced in part by a 3-D printing process, the lights are more intense toward the outer edges for a unique appearance.
The Divo’s seats are a new design that not only sport fresh styling but also provide greater lateral support. Alcantara in Divo Racing Blue — the same as the exterior paint — is used extensively throughout the cabin. The driver’s seat and surrounding trim use more of the blue to provide visual separation from the passenger area.
Design changes that differentiate Divo from Chiron are primarily functional, all with the goal of improving agility and performance. The newly-designed wider front spoiler provides higher downforce as well as more airflow, which improves overall cooling. The roof of the Divo has been shaped to direct air into the engine to manage operating temperatures.
New air vents on the Divo direct cold air directly to the brakes, while a heat shield transfers the hot air through the wheels, helping to keep the massive brakes — 16.5 inches in front, 15.7 inches in rear — at optimized performance.
The Divo is a full 35 kg lighter than the Chiron. This weight reduction is a result of lightweight wheels, a carbon-fiber intercooler cover, a lesser amount of insulation material, a lighter audio system and removal of storage compartments inside.
In addition to the weight reduction, Divo gets new chassis and suspension settings designed to improve cornering dynamics. A new rear spoiler is height adjustable, acting as an airbrake or changing angles depending on driving needs. It is also 23 percent wider than the one found on the Chiron, and combined with the redesigned rear diffuser generates 456 kg of downforce — 90 kg more than Chiron.
Bugatti engineers have adjusted the steering and suspension for more direct response and sportier driving. In addition, the camber is increased, which results in 1.6 g of lateral acceleration that clearly improves handling on any kind of road or track. In fact, the Divo is able to lap the Nardo handling circuit a full 8 seconds faster than the Chiron.
Powering the Divo is the same extreme powerplant found in the Chiron. That would be the 8.0-liter quad turbo W16 engine producing 1500 horsepower and insane 1180 lb-ft of torque, available as low as 2000 rpm. The Divo uses a 2-stage turbocharging system that starts with two turbos engaged for quicker acceleration — at 3700 rpm the other turbos kick in. Power gets directed to all four wheels via a 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox. While the Divo’s maximum speed is limited to “only” 236 mph, it will still sprint to 62 mph in a mere 2.4 seconds.
Why build a vehicle such as the Divo? It seems the brand’s customers were looking for something even more special than the Chiron. “When I took up my position at Bugatti at the beginning of the year, I soon learnt that our customers and fans were waiting for a special vehicle which would tell a further story for the brand in addition to the Chiron,” said Stephan Winkelmann, president of Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S. “The Bugatti team was also very eager to implement a project like this,” Winkelmann concluded.
Bugatti plans to keep production of the Divo limited to 40 copies, each priced around €5.0 million(US$5.8 million). But don’t sweat the price — all 40 Divos have been pre-sold. “The feedback from our customers was overwhelming”, reported Winkelmann. “We showed the Divo to a small group of select Chiron customers. All 40 cars were sold immediately — this was fantastic confirmation for the Bugatti team which had put so much dedication and passion into the project,” Winkelmann noted.