Bugatti Chiron production in Molsheim, France
Prior to the reveal of the Chiron at the 2016 Geneva auto show, former Volkswagen Group CEO Martin Winterkorn hinted that there would be two performance levels for the Chiron, with the more extreme version to feature hybrid technology.
However, it’s now more likely that Bugatti will wait until the Chiron’s replacement to introduce some form of electrification.
Speaking with Autocar, Bugatti CEO Wolfgang Dürheimer said the next car will need to be electrified to further enhance performance beyond that of the Chiron.
“The next car is a long way from being developed, but the way battery and electric motor technology is moving on—as well as regulations – it seems certain that the next car will be electrified in some way,” Dürheimer said.
Such a move, however, would leave Bugatti even further behind rivals in the technology race. Ferrari, McLaren and Porsche launched hybrid hypercars in 2013. Aston Martin and Mercedes-AMG will launch even faster hybrids in the coming year with their respective Valkyrie and Project One models. And then you have the pure electrics from companies like Nio and Rimac, although these are still limited by their shortened range during spirited driving.
The Chiron, meanwhile, makes do with an upgraded version of the engine that debuted in the Veyron more than a decade ago. Nevertheless, the car certainly isn’t lacking in performance. It can hit 62 mph in under 2.5 seconds and is almost certain to be capable of faster speeds than the current production car record of 267.8 mph, set by the Veyron Super Sport in 2010.
Dürheimer last year said Bugatti had looked at hybrid technology for the Chiron, but was able to achieve its power goals without resorting to electrification.