Bugatti unveils $7.5 million track-only Divo

Limited production car (40 units to be made) shifts attention to handling

Published: August 27, 2018, 5:30 PM
Updated: November 21, 2021, 3:00 PM

Bugatti Divo rear wing

Bugatti took the opportunity at California’s Monterey Car Week to show the world its latest model, the Divo, at The Quail.

Named after French driver Albert Divo (born Albert Eugène Diwo), a Bugatti works driver who won the famed Targa Florio twice, Divo carries on the Bugatti legacy of awesome power (with its 8-litre quad-turbo W-16 making 1,479 hp), but the company decided to take the car in a different direction, choosing handling over straight-like acceleration.

“To date, a modern Bugatti has represented a perfect balance between high performance, straight-line dynamics and luxurious comfort,” said Bugatti President Stephan Winkelmann. “Within our possibilities, we have shifted the balance in the case of the Divo further towards lateral acceleration, agility and cornering. The Divo is made for bends.”

To attain that goal, the company paid close attention to weight reduction, suspension and chassis tuning, and aerodynamics. Divo is 35 kg lighter than Chiron (from which it’s derived) and boasts 90 kg more downforce. Lateral acceleration stands at 1.6 g, but its top speed is limited to 380 km/h (20 less than Chiron, due to the added bodywork). The car lapped the Nardò circuit in southern Italy eight seconds faster than Chiron.

The car bears a close resemblance to Chiron, with unique cues to give it its own personality, while adding the necessary bodywork to fulfil its lateral-acceleration intent. The front facia is equipped with air intakes to reduce the effective frontal area of the car and provide better air flow to components. A new front spoiler provides more downforce and redirects air flow to the inlets. Front air inlets, vanes and diffusers also direct air to the brakes.

The roof design houses a large NACA duct (the flow-optimized air inlet designed in 1945 by the US National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, the precursor to NASA), which works with the engine cover behind the cabin to deliver massive airflow to the engine.

The profile is finished off by a height-adjustable 183-cm-wide rear wing (wider than the deployable spoiler in Chiron) that adjusts to different angles, depending on driving mode (EB, Autobahn and Handling), including functioning as an air-brake. A redesigned rear diffuser is more efficient and houses four tailpipes.

The high-gloss Divo Grey petroleum-tone exterior is accented in Divo Racing Blue, a new turquoise shade based off the traditional Bugatti racing blue. Matte versions of the colours are carried over to the Alcantara-clad interior, which features contrasting colours between the driver and passenger sides.

Divo is intended as a track only car, but Bugatti says it will be homologated for road use. Its production is limited to 40 cars, each with a €5 million price tag (about $7.5 million Canadian). It was shown privately to a group of Chiron owners, and sold out before the rest of the world had a chance to see it.