With the Mistral and Bolide, Bugatti is formally bidding adieu to the 8.0-liter W16 engine. The quad-turbo powerhouse will have been more than 20 years old in 2024 when the peeps from Molsheim will deliver the final units of the roadster and track-only machine. What comes next? Rather than slapping the EB logo on a Nevera and calling it a day, the newly founded Bugatti Rimac company is developing a hypercar from the ground up.
Auto Express sat down and had a chat with Mate Rimac about what comes after the Chiron. Surprisingly, Rimac – which is known for its cutting-edge EV technology – started developing a combustion engine two years before merging with Bugatti. Touted as being a "hypercar rearranged as a hybrid," the next masterpiece will have a "totally bonkers" ICE, and the company's boss says we will all be "blown away" once the wraps will come off next year.
2024 Bugatti Mistral
The 34-year-old Croatian innovator and businessman pointed out Bugatti's next model will have no connections with existing models: "It's completely new, so there is not one part carried over from any car; nothing carried over from Chiron, nothing carried over from Nevera. Everything is from scratch.” Shockingly, Bugatti's original plan was to replace the W16 hypercar with a Ferrari Purosangue-like SUV but electric.
The differences between the next Bugatti and Nevera will extend beyond the powertrain, Mate Rimac explains:
"The Bugatti thing is more turn up to the opera and then drive 400 km/h (249 mph) on the Autobahn. It will be more beautiful, analog instruments, kind of watch-making stuff. With Rimac, we want it to be absolutely insane, bonkers, full-electric – drifting at 60 km/h (37 mph) with a gigantic cloud of smoke behind you, autonomous drift modes, futuristic stuff."
Before the tie-up with Rimac, Bugatti was in a bit of a predicament as parent company Volkswagen Group even considered discontinuing the fabled French brand altogether or finding it a new owner: "VW had several options, including kill the brand or sell it to someone else."
Mate Rimac explains that after a decision was made for the two companies to merge, he immediately aborted the initial plan to launch an SUV, deciding instead to work on a hybrid hypercar. It'll be revealed next year, but with the Mistral and Bolide deliveries programmed for 2024, chances are the next Bugatti won't hit the streets until around 2025.