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Bugatti Veyron back on top

Quite a journey: Bugatti has had a roller-coaster ride of Veyron-related world records in the past week.

Guinness backflip reinstates Bugatti Veyron Super Sport as world’s fastest car


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16 Apr 2013

BUGATTI’S Veyron Super Sport is the world’s fastest production car after all, following a backflip by Guinness World Records a week after it stripped the hypercar of its title.

The news comes shortly after Bugatti smashed the record for world’s fastest roadster by hitting 408.84km/h with the open-topped Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse.

Guinness retracted the Veyron’s 431km/h record because Bugatti disabled the electronic limiter that prevents mere mortals from exceeding 415km/h, citing this as a modification from standard.

Under Guinness criteria, the vehicle used to set a record attempt must be identical to a minimum of 50 production examples required for it to classify as a production car.

A Guinness statement said it had conducted a thorough review with a number of external experts.

“The focus of the review was with respect to what may constitute a modification to a car’s standard specification,” read the statement.

“Having evaluated all the necessary information, Guinness World Records is now satisfied that a change to the speed limiter does not alter the fundamental design of the car or its engine.”

After the Veyron Super Sport lost its title, American sportscar tuner Hennessey stepped in to argue the case for their Lotus Exige-based Venom GT taking the title, having achieved a claimed top speed of 427.6km/h – although the test was not conducted under the scrutiny of world record officials.

The roadster record set by the Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse was not overseen by Guinness, but the independent German organisation for Technical Inspection and Certification (TUV).

At the wheel was Chinese race driver Anthony Liu, who achieved the record with the roof removed and said this enabled him to “really experience the sound of the engine”, without getting “compromised” by the wind.

Bugatti supplies a special roof spoiler and windbreak that are claimed to guarantee calm open-top driving, evidently even record-breaking speeds.

The record attempt took place at Volkswagen Group’s Ehra-Lessien proving ground, around 25km north of VW’s headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany.

Mr Liu’s record-breaking car will be shown at the Shanghai motor show later this month and a limited run of eight cars will be produced in the same two-tone black and orange finish that Bugatti says “perfectly translates its inner qualities into its exterior appearance”.

Each will be priced at €1.99 million ($A2.47m) plus taxes.

The eight record-breaking special editions will deploy the same 883kW/1500Nm 8.0-litre quad-turbo W16 engine as the Grand Sport Vitesse that has been on sale since last year.

Showroom versions of the Grand Sport Vitesse are electronically limited to 375km/h for the road, so Bugatti again disabled the limiter for the record attempt.

Bugatti president Wolfgang Schreiber said setting world records “reaffirms once again that Bugatti is the leader when it comes to technology in the international automotive industry”.

“When we introduced the Vitesse, we established the top speed for open-top driving to be 375 km/h.

“Still, we could not let go of the idea of reaching the 400 km/h mark with this car as well. The fact that we have succeeded in reaching 408.84km/h is a thrill for me.”

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