Bugatti is back on top in terms of speed. When the $3 million Bugatti Chiron launched a few years ago, we all marveled at how slow it was. With an electronically limited top speed of 261 mph, it didn’t seem capable of matching its predecessor the Veyron Super Sport, which hit a Guinness-certified 267.8 mph record in 2013.
But now, Bugatti is back on top. The automaker confirmed today that a speed run on Volkswagen’s Ehra-Lessien test track in Germany led to an official 304.773 mph speed last month.
The news was broken in an exclusive by Top Gear, which said the run happened on August 2 with driver Andy Wallace at the wheel. The speed was certified by the TÜV, Germany’s Technical Inspection Association, and that means it’s vastly outpaced runs from SSC, Koenigsegg and other go-fast companies.
A standard Chiron is a speed monster, with its quad-turbocharged W16 putting out 1,479 horsepower. But this record car has had some work done, according to Top Gear. The folks at Dallara, who make its chassis, removed the rear wing and air brake for a static unit with more downforce. It is longer and lower overall. The exhaust was modified and moved as well. Additionally, passenger seat was removed and a roll cage was fitted, which is something you want if shit goes wrong approaching 300 mph.
However, you won’t be seeing any other top speed records from Bugatti in the foreseeable future as the company’s president, Stephan Winkelmann, has revealed the Molsheim-based marque is done chasing speed records. Bugatti’s goal was to be the first automaker to break the 300-mph barrier, and now that they’ve done it with the longtail Chiron, the quest is over. From now on, “we will focus on other areas,” says Winkelmann.