This year Bugatti is sending two automobile icons to the 36th Mille Miglia, the most famous vintage car rally in the world. The star of the show is a Bugatti Type 35, one of the most successful racing cars in automotive history. Dr Wolfgang Schreiber, president of Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S, will be behind the factory car’s wheel. The Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse, the latest model from the legendary French brand, will also start, though not compete. The Mille Miglia runs from 16-19 May 2013.
The Mille Miglia – the thousand-mile rally from Brescia to Rome and back – is a ‘must-attend’ historical driving event for car enthusiasts across the world. Bugatti is no exception. The luxury French brand with a proud and long history is participating in Mille Miglia 2013 with two automobile icons. Representing Bugatti’s fine racing pedigree, a Type 35T from 1926 – Grand Prix racing car par excellence – will line up on the starting grid. The 35T is a version of the Type 35, one of the most successful racing cars in automotive history, having clocked up over 2,000 victories.
The Type 35T draws its 120 PS from a 2.3 litre, straight-eight engine. Its 750 kilogrammes are distributed perfectly across the axles (50 to 50 per cent), giving the car incredible manoeuvrability. As a representative of the Bugatti brand, which hails from and is still headquartered in Molsheim, Alsace, the Type 35T will enter the race in blue racing livery, as all French racing cars once were.
This jewel of a car with an incredible past will be accompanied by a modern day icon: the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse. The Vitesse, which is also manufactured in Molsheim, is powered by an 8-litre W16 engine. It boasts some impressive statistics: 1,200 PS, 1,500 Nm of torque and exhilarating acceleration of 0 to 100 km/h in 2.6 seconds. With the top down, it reaches a top speed of 410 km/h, which makes it the fastest production roadster in the world. Recently, the Vitesse also broke the world record for open-top driving with a top speed of 408 km/h. To match the Type 35, the Vitesse appearing at the Mille Miglia is also blue. The upper bodywork consists of blue clear-coated carbon fibre, while the lower part is in “Light Blue Sport”.
This year, the Mille Miglia is being held for the 36th time since 1977, as a tribute to the former legendary motor race. From its début in 1927 to its temporary closure in 1957, the Mille Miglia was considered one of the longest and most challenging races in the world. Although today it is organised as a moderate and safe drive, it is by no means a Sunday outing for vintage car lovers. The three-day, multi-stage rally places considerable demands on driver and vintage car alike. The race runs over 1,000 miles from its start in Brescia, Northern Italy, passes cities such as Verona, Ferrara, San Marino and Rome, and returns via Siena, Florence and Cremona, cheered on by hundreds of thousands of enthusiasts at the roadside along the way. The rules stipulate that only cars that took part in the original Italian classic race and are still in their original condition may participate in the competition.
The Mille Miglia runs from 16–19 May 2013. The Bugatti Type 35T will drive with starting number 14.