Every Bugatti is as unique as its owner. But for some customers the design they choose for their car is not a finality – tastes may change, or new ideas may provide a spark of creativity at any point. No matter if a customer has owned the car for a day or a decade, the opportunity to imbue it with an entirely new personality always remains. And so it was with this most recent Sur Mesure commission.
The story begins with two Bugatti enthusiasts, a husband and wife who have owned a number of hyper sports cars from Molsheim, but never from brand new. Together, they decided to celebrate their great passion for Bugatti by each buying the ultimate Grand Tourisme: the Chiron Super Sport. The husband’s car was delivered first, and having already enjoyed his Chiron Super Sport on US roads, he watched closely as his wife’s Chiron Super Sport came to life with the help of the Bugatti Sur Mesure bespoke team.
Working hand-in-hand with Jascha Straub, Lead Designer of Sur Mesure at the home of Bugatti in Molsheim her bold vision was to reimagine a design that first inspired her upon its reveal 12 years ago: the timeless Veyron L’Or Blanc. She fell in love with a combination of bright red Rosso Efesto and vibrant orange Arancia Mira to create her very own hand-painted masterpiece in a style that has become known as “Vagues de Lumière” for the way it mimics light reflections. This pattern, just as it did on the L’Or Blanc, has sparked the creativity of Bugatti owners, with each of them applying their own unique spin, reinterpreting the design in subtly personal ways.
The intricate process of creating this extraordinary paint scheme takes weeks, beginning with the creation of 2D shapes representing the lines that will be flowing over the car, which must be applied to the cars 3D surfaces with millimeter-perfection and taped. Each millimeter of the marked lines is then meticulously painted by hand, layer upon layer, with the contrasting color – orange in this case. If the line does not fully meet the intention of the designer, a correction tape is placed above the original line until the shape is absolutely perfect. This process is repeated until each and every line has the right flow and character. Once complete, the paint is then secured with multiple layers of clearcoat. The resultant paintwork, combining deep lustrous red with a vibrant orange appears to vividly glow with energy, perfectly reflecting the customer’s choice of name for this car: ‘L’aura’ (‘The aura’ in English).
Jascha Straub, explained: “The “Vagues de Lumière” effect is not new to Bugatti, but each customer has their own wishes and desires for how it should look, and each car requires a different pattern. A Chiron Pur Sport2, for example, will have different reflections to a Chiron Super Sport, so every time we are really working from the ground up to ensure absolute perfection. The true beauty of these cars also lies in their individuality – every painter has a different style, so each car is totally unique. I saw this car for the first time recently in the bright sunshine of California and people could not believe how incredible it looked. What we have created together is an inspirational sculpture.”
So inspirational, in fact, that it provided the spark for yet another Sur Mesure project. While watching the design of his wife’s car evolve, her husband found “Coup de Foudre” (a fitting dual meaning of both ‘bolt of lightning’ and ‘love at first sight’ in English). He decided to have his own car transformed to match hers – an exciting new project for the Bugatti Customer Service team.
Bugatti customers have come to expect the extraordinary every step of the way during their journey with the brand; from individualization to delivery to servicing, customer service reflects the same focus and attention to detail that goes into the design of every Bugatti.
The Customer Service team in Molsheim, who have decades of experience in maintaining and repairing vehicles, also gives customers the opportunity to further personalize or even to refurbish their cars with a greater range of customization options and features. Interiors are retrimmed in entirely new colors and materials, new accessories added, and updated finishes and colors applied to the exterior body. Traditionally this process is offered to Bugatti models like the Veyron or older Chiron3 examples, but the service extends to nearly-new cars such as this one.
And with that, the Chiron Super Sport was shipped from the customer’s home in Tennessee to the Customer Service workshop at the home of Bugatti in Molsheim to begin a meticulous, seven month-long transformation to match the new desired design of the customer.
For the Customer Service team, transforming this brand new car to a visible carbon fiber finish with a subtle 10% black color tint enveloped by light-sculpted lines in French Racing Blue required months of preparation alone. The carbon fiber bonnet, roof, engine cover and rear wing all had to be replaced, and the blue lines originally specified had to be completely removed from the body. A new Sky View roof was also specified, meaning the entire original roof panel had to be removed from the monocoque structure. All of this could only be done after every single piece of the interior had been removed to ensure that it would remain completely free from the fine dust created during the process. The end result should not feel simply refreshed, but as a brand new car with the same level of attention to detail and the same quality standards applied to every car that leaves Molsheim.
The panels had to be aligned on the car with millimeter-precision to ensure that the visible fibers of the carbon material lined up perfectly across the whole body. Bonding the new roof in place was a critical step – the Bugatti Customer Service team had to achieve the exact tolerances required and allowed for the structural adhesive to fully cure.
With the body perfectly prepared, the process of applying the stripes could begin, with unique 2D shapes for the French Racing Blue contrast color applied. So intricate are these cutouts that this stage took one person working solely on this project for four weeks, adjusting the selected pattern so that it perfectly fits this car. The blue color was then applied by hand over many layers to create these flowing lines and give the illusion of bright reflections over the black body. Although inspired by his wife’s car, no two cars will be exactly alike, each subtly imbued with the personality and artistic flair of the designer that created the lines and the craftsman who made them come to life. The finish is then clear coated over the whole car with precision and attention to detail so that the lines stretch across the perfectly shaped Bugatti like waves of light reflections.
To match his wife’s car, the name ‘Coup de Foudre’ referring to the blue lines painted on black carbon looking like bolts of lightning in the night sky is hand-painted underneath the rear wing, on the door sills, and on the sides of the center console. Bespoke door panels, with a unique “Vagues de Lumiere”-inspired design were also made and fitted by hand. In a final flourish, the wheels were refinished from the original black finish to a hand-painted duotone design incorporating French Racing Blue.
Frederic Stocks, Head of the Aftersales Workshop, said: “Never before have we been asked to completely transform the character of a car that is so early into its ownership journey with a customer. Doing so is one of the most technically challenging projects we have ever undertaken, but the experience and knowledge of the Bugatti Aftersales team is unmatched. From individualization to delivery and beyond, Customer Service is making sure that every step of the Bugatti customer journey is as unique and unrivaled as our cars.”
The resulting bespoke Chiron Super Sport is a triumph of passion and creativity, bringing together the personal vision of the customer with the creativity of the Bugatti team.
Hendrik Malinowski, Managing Director at Bugatti Automobiles, said: “There is no other car manufacturer like Bugatti. Each customer’s journey is a unique testament to the unparalleled level of personalization that only Bugatti can deliver. Each Bugatti expert has a different approach, and the resulting cars are entirely unique as a reflection of the individual artistic style not only of each craftsman but also the vision of the customer. For these two customers, the difference in their journeys were distinct. Yet, both showcase the savoir-faire that runs throughout our brand, fittingly inspired by one of our most innovative and beautiful creations: the timeless Veyron L’Or Blanc.“