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HENNESSY X.O UNVEILS A DARING COLLABORATION BETWEEN FRANK GEHRY AND BACCARAT FOR A MATHUSALEM MASTERPIECE

HENNESSY X.O UNVEILS A DARING COLLABORATION BETWEEN FRANK GEHRY AND BACCARAT FOR A MATHUSALEM MASTERPIECE

Thirty unique Mathusalem sculptural decanters entirely handmade at the famed Baccarat factory will be available this October.

Hennessy, the world’s best-selling Cognac, is proud to release an exclusive Mathusalem sculptural masterpiece designed by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry, marking the first time one of his designs is brought to life by Baccarat. After creating 150 limited-edition decanters for Hennessy X.O’s 150th anniversary in 2020, the prolific creator has once again collaborated with Hennessy Maison to design 30 never-to-be-repeated masterpieces, marrying his impressive and daring style with the greatness of Hennessy’s Extra Old Cognac.

“The legendary Frank Gehry’s daring creative vision was one that could only be brought to life by the most talented craftsmen of their kind, the artisans of Baccarat. This, coupled with the legacy of the Hennessy Maison, has resulted in a limited edition of thirty stunningly unique sculptures that prove to be more than just a decanter,” said Laurent Boillot, Hennessy President and Chief Executive Officer. “This design takes Frank Gehry’s signature sculptural style, Baccarat’s know-how, and Hennessy’s daring sensibilities to the next level. With crystal expertly carved in a way that mimics the look of the classic serve of Hennessy X.O over ice, something that provided inspiration to Gehry during the design process, this sculptural masterpiece showcases the richness of the spirit while paying homage to the craftsmanship that goes into making this exquisite product.”

Realized by the luxury French brand Baccarat, the art pieces are the result of a unique savoir-faire combined with the endless creativity of Frank Gehry. The monumental 6-liter Mathusalem decanter emerges in a powerful and daring posture that elicits imagery of melting ice punctuated by the rich color of Cognac Hennessy X.O.

For Frank Gehry, whose passion for the movement of light is at the heart of this new creation, eliciting emotion from those who see his masterpieces signifies the ultimate success. “I actually cried when I saw it, so I hope that it elecits the same emotional response in others who see it maybe because they’ve never seen anything like this,” the world-renowned architect said when speaking about the Mathusalem he designed. “To me, it’s exciting to see something that pushes the boundaries, that has never been done before. I hope what we’ve created lives up to the same passion and craftsmanship that the makers of Hennessy in Cognac put into their product.”

Inspired by a visit to Cognac and the craftsmanship that goes into the making of Cognac Hennessy X.O, Frank Gehry’s striking creation leverages the unique know-how of the Baccarat artisans, handed down from generation to generation since 1764 – a legacy that dates as far back as Maison Hennessy, founded in 1765 -to bring to life his vision that reflects the vitality of the vineyards, the waters of the Charente River running through Cognac, the richness of the Hennessy X.O blend and the ice that it is so well paired with.

When the teams of the manufacture received the design of the monumental bottle, they discovered the incredible challenge given by Frank Gehry. The design and the dimensions of this unique creation presented rare technical complexities which required thirty individual molds to create each unique sculpture. For the craftsmen of Baccarat, holders of unique know-how, no feat is impossible and they were determined to respect the original design and took much pride in working with one of the greatest architects in the world. In close collaboration with Maison Hennessy, real teamwork ensued. From preliminary sketches to the first molds, from the creation of the rocks to the final cut, each step illustrates Baccarat’s excellence, innovation, and creativity. The making of the bottle required the implementation of new techniques, the creation of specific tools and adapted thermal cycles. Several months were needed to shape this sculptural work whose organic and powerful form incorporates the key elements of Baccarat: earth, water, air, fire.

 

The Hennessy X.O Mathusalem by Frank Gehry embodies the passion and perfection of the three collaborators: Frank Gehry, Baccarat and Cognac Hennessy, all in perpetual quest for new challenges and experiences to evoke emotion and lasting impressions.
Valorizing the iconicity of Frank Gehry, the Mathusalem will have a select distribution in exclusive luxury retail and private sale points and will be sold for 150 000 € each.

To learn more about the Hennessy X.O Mathusalem by Frank Gehry, visit Hennesy.com or @Hennessy on Instagram.

ABOUT FRANK GEHRY

Frank Gehry has built an illustrious architectural career that has spanned over six decades. His public and private work throughout the world – including the Bilbao Guggenheim, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, the Art Gallery of Ontario, Hong Kong’s Opus Tower, and the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris – is designed with a shared clear-cut philosophy that people must exist comfortably within his spaces and an insistence that his buildings address the context and culture of their sites. Early in his career, Frank Gehry also began to create both sculpture and furniture, which similarly reflected his love of inventive forms, texture and unexpected materials.
Throughout his illustrious career, Frank Gehry has also received honorary doctoral degrees from such esteemed institutions as the Rhode Island School of Design, Princeton University, and, most recently, the University of Oxford. He has also held teaching positions at many universities, including Harvard, UCLA, and Yale, where he is still teaching. His contribution to architecture has earned Frank Gehry some of its most significant recognitions in the field, including the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize, the Friedrich Kiesler Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama. The Hennessy X.O 150th anniversary Masterpiece in September 2020 was Frank Gehry’s first project with Hennessy.

ABOUT BACCARAT

Baccarat (Paris Euronext, BCRA) is French luxury brand internationally renowned as a leader in high-end and exclusive crystal products. Since its foundation in 1764, the company, whose artisanal manufacture is based in Baccarat in the Lorraine region of Eastern France, has been synonymous with a unique savoir-faire and has come to symbolize an inimitable French Art de Vivre. For over 250 years, the brand has inspired leading designers from across the world. Ranging from iconic lighting to unique tableware and decorative ojects, fine jewelry and tailor-made flacons, the brand’s products and tradition of excellence are widely distributed around the globe.
Since December 23, 2020, Baccarat has been indirectly and mainly controlled by Tor Investment Management LP (on behalf of the funds it manages), which controls and holds the majority of the capital of Fortunie Legend Limited Sarl, a company registered in Luxembourg which owns itself 97,1% of the capital and voting rights of Baccarat.

ABOUT HENNESSY

The leader in Cognac, the Maison Hennessy has shone around the world with its exceptional know-how for more than 250 years. Built on founder Richard Hennessy’s spirit of conquest, the brand is present in more than 160 countries. Based in the heart of the Charente region, Hennessy is also a steadfast pillar of the regional economy. The House’s success and longevity are rooted in the excellence of its cognacs, each of which is born of a unique process of transmission of know-how from generation to generation. The first spirits house to be certified ISO 14001, Hennessy unites its capacity for innovation and the support of all of its partners to protect this exceptional area. As a crown jewel of the LVMH Group, Hennessy is a major contributor to French international trade, with 99% of production sold in export, and a worldwide ambassador for the French art de vivre.

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY
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‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

  • Bentley sets out five step diversity and inclusion plan under Beyond100 strategy
  • Efforts will focus on enhancing diversity and inclusion across the business and driving progress towards long term business goals, with a target of 30 per cent diversity at management level by 2025
  • As internal engagement kicks off, Bentley has revealed the unique Unifying Spur – a Flying Spur wrapped in an artist’s design capturing the themes of love, progress and unity.
  • Start of a global calendar of external events and activities involving the car

(Crewe, 27 May 2021) Bentley Motors has today set out further details of its diversity and inclusion strategy. A uniquely-designed Flying Spur embodies this company focus as European Diversity month draws to a close, and Pride celebrations begin around the world.

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

The 101-year old company is going through unparalleled change on its journey towards a climate-positive future. Recognising the fundamental importance of diverse experiences and perspectives to drive creativity and innovation, Bentley aims to become the most diverse luxury car manufacturer. To this end it has set a target of increasing diversity in management to 30 per cent by 2025.

Bentley’s five step strategy focuses on outreach, recruitment, succession planning, culture and development. Early careers talent acquisition will be over-indexed towards organisations with diverse intakes, while the recruitment of established hires will explore new talent pools. To ensure that all talent within the business is supported, succession planning will be reviewed to ensure early identification of diverse talent within the business. Development programmes will ensure that colleagues from all walks of life are able to grow and achieve their full potential. This will be underpinned by measurable KPIs and targets, and Board-led engagement to drive a positive culture and remove unconscious bias. The recently-launched colleague network groups will also help drive engagement within the business through a series of strategic events and activities.

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

To mark the launch of the strategy, a challenge was set to the Bentley Design team to create an automotive artwork that celebrates diversity in all its forms. Designer Rich Morris, who paints and sculpts in his spare time, rose to the challenge by creating a piece of four-wheeled art using the nine colours of the Progress flag. His design joins the words “Love is Love” through a single, unbroken line, that traces faces, dancing figures and shapes – representing the unifying power of humanity, regardless of race, creed or sexuality. The Unifying Spur will be revealed to colleagues at Bentley’s Crewe factory before embarking upon a programme of external activities in the coming months.

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

‘UNIFYING SPUR’ EMBEDS DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AT THE HEART OF BENTLEY’S BEYOND100 STRATEGY

Dr. Astrid Fontaine, Bentley’s Member of the Board for People, Digitalisation and IT, explains:

“We know that diversity drives success, by bringing a greater range of experience, creativity as well as inclusion allows co-operation to play in business strategy, innovation and decision-making. We also want our our business to reflect our global customer base and most importantly of all, to ensure that we all work in an environment where everyone feels safe to bring their true self to work and valued for who they are and what they can do.

“That is why diversity and inclusion are profoundly important to us and as part of our Beyond100 programme we have therefore set ourselves the challenge to become the most diverse luxury car manufacturer. For us this means ensuring there are colleagues from all walks of life in our management structure.

“This goes hand in hand with our ethos that a rich and inclusive culture, where everyone is supported to achieve their full potential, is what will help to drive our business forward for the next one hundred years.

“Through the reveal of the Unifying Spur, the internal activities that it will support – and the external engagements we are planning for it in 2021 – we aim to celebrate the individual talents and idiosyncracies that make us all unique as – whilst at the same time as highlighting the key themes that unite and bring us together.”

Bentley Motors is the most sought-after luxury car brand in the world. The company’s headquarters in Crewe is home to all of its operations including design, R&D, engineering and production of the company’s three model lines, Continental, Flying Spur and Bentayga. The combination of fine craftsmanship, using skills that have been handed down through generations, alongside engineering expertise and cutting-edge technology is unique to UK luxury car brands such as Bentley. It is also an example of high-value British manufacturing at its best. Bentley employs around 4,000 people at Crewe.

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Sotheby’s rare Whisky & Moutai Live –  Including The Black Bowmore “The Archive Cabinet”

Sotheby’s rare Whisky & Moutai Live –  Including The Black Bowmore “The Archive Cabinet”

Black Bowmore Archive Cabinet Direct From Bowmore (5 BT)

THE ARCHIVE CABINET

A complete collection of Black Bowmore whiskies sold for US$570,000 at a Sotheby’s sale, setting a new record for the Scotch brand at auction.

An exceptionally rare collection of Black Bowmore single malt, direct from Bowmore distillery on Islay, housed in a unique handcrafted Cabinet, itself a functioning bar.

Celebrating the pioneering spirit of the distillery and the story of the iconic Black Bowmore, each element of the Archive Cabinet tells a story of time and evolution. From the repurposing of former elements of the distillation process to taking inspiration from colours, textures and patterns witnessed around the distillery and across Islay.

The Cabinet houses five rare bottles of Black Bowmore, bottled between 1993 and 2016 and includes set of solid brass coasters, six hand- made glasses and a water jug.

THE COLLECTION:

A complete distillery owned collection of Black Bowmore from first release to last (1993-2016).

First edition:

·     Release Date: 1993

·     Age: 29 Years

·     Number of bottles: 2000

·     Bottle No. 819

Second Edition

·     Release Date: 1994

·     Age: 30 Years

·     Number of bottles: 2000

·     Bottle: No.1

Third Edition

·     Release Date: 1995

·     Age: 31 Years

·     Number of bottles: 1812

·     Bottle No.7

 

Fourth Edition

·     Release Date: 2007

·     Age: 42 Years

·     Number of bottles: 827

·     Bottle No.2

Fifth Edition

·     Release date: 2016

·     Age: 50 Years

·     Number of bottles: 159

·     Bottle No.72

THE CABINET:

Inspired by the heart and soul of Islay, and the Bowmore distillery itself, the Archive Cabinet connects back to these in every aspect of its creation. Created by master craftsman John Galvin, this is a true piece of history; capturing the people, place and process which has made Bowmore what it is today.

Featuring authentic elements of the distillery itself including:

·     Original brass spirit safe installed in 1924 used in the production of Black Bowmore and replaced in 2020, after just under a century of use, is used on the exterior and its brass levers act as handles.

·     Washback wood from washback No. I replaced in 2019 are used for the drawers, with the iron band marking still intact

·     4 key elements of Bowmore frozen in time; water, barley, Islay peat and wood are captured through solid acrylic pillars

·     Bespoke glasses, water jug and the glass pillars crafted using the Venetian buttato process in Scotland by artisan glass makers Glasstorm

·     7 bespoke solid brass coasters designed by John Galvin

·     A one-off book and sketches set which details the journey of Black

Bowmore over its five releases and the creation of the cabinet

The Cabinet will be dismantled for final transit, John Galvin will set up the final cabinet in the auction winner’s home

THE EXPERIENCE:

As a VIP guest of David Turner, Bowmore Distillery Manager, the buyer (2-4 guests included at the buyer’s choice) will be invited to Islay (at their own expense) to enjoy a private guided tour of the distillery , showcasing the ingredients and processes which go into creating the unique taste of Bowmore Single Malt Scotch Whisky. This will reveal the true inspiration for this one-off Archive Cabinet and share the enriching story of Black Bowmore and the Bowmore distillery.

This includes an exclusive tour of the legendary No 1 Vaults, the world’s oldest maturation warehouse that sits on the edge of Loch Indaal. Here guests will enjoy a special cask tasting to discover the magical character of Bowmore direct from the cask. As part of the visit, guests will have unlimited behind the scenes access to the Distillery; exploring all facets of Bowmore Whisky – from the old fashioned floor maltings to the deep dark warehouses. This invitation is valid until 2030 and is non-transferable.

Catalogue Note

 

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Renewable fuel to power continental GT3 to the clouds bentley’s 2021 pikes peak racer unveiled

RENEWABLE FUEL TO POWER CONTINENTAL GT3 TO THE CLOUDS – BENTLEY’S 2021 PIKES PEAK RACER UNVEILED

  • Bentley launches new sustainability initiative with return to Pikes Peak
  • “Continental GT3 Pikes Peak” to run on renewable fuel
  • Modified race car to be the most dynamic Bentley ever built
  • Bentley bids for triple crown of Pikes Peak records
  • Targeting Time Attack 1 record, to add to Production SUV and Production Car records attained in 2018 and 2019
  • Former King of the Mountain Rhys Millen returns to drive for Bentley
  • Car developed in conjunction with GT3 customer team Fastr
  • Pikes Peak International Hill Climb to take place on 27 June 2021

(Crewe, April 2021) Bentley has today launched a major new sustainability initiative, with the announcement of a renewable fuels research and development programme spearheaded by the most extreme road-car-based Bentley in its 101 year history. The Continental GT3 Pikes Peak, designed and built to compete for the Time Attack 1 record at this year’s Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, will be the first competition Bentley to run on renewable fuel, ahead of a goal to offer sustainable fuels to Bentley’s customers around the world.

The modified Continental GT3 racer, based on Bentley’s race- and championship-winning car, will power its way through the 12.42-mile course running on a biofuel-based gasoline. Various blends of fuels are currently being tested and evaluated, with possible Greenhouse Gas (GHG) reductions of up to 85% over standard fossil fuel. This first step marks the start of a longer programme that will investigate both biofuels and e-fuels for their potential to power the Bentleys of past and present in a sustainable way.

Bentley’s ambitious and transformational Beyond100 programme will see the brand become the world’s leading sustainable luxury mobility company, with the entire Bentley model range offered with Hybrid variants by 2023 ahead of Bentley being BEV-only by 2030. The adoption of renewable fuel for this project signals the start of a long-term ambition for Bentley, initiating a research and development programme that aims to offer renewable fuels to Bentley customers in parallel to Bentley’s electrification programme. This two-strand strategy is set to maximise the pace of Bentley’s progress towards outright carbon neutrality, as part of its Beyond100 journey.

Continental-GT3-Pikes-Peak—9

Combustion-engine Bentleys will still be produced for the next nine years – and Bentley’s new project aims to make those cars as sustainable as possible through the use of innovative fuel technologies. With more than 80% of all Bentleys ever built still on the road, a genuinely sustainable and customer-facing renewable fuel offering will also allow customers to enjoy their current and classic Bentleys responsibly for years to come.

Bentley’s Member of the Board for Engineering, Dr Matthias Rabe, comments:

“We are delighted to be returning to Pikes Peak for a third time – now powered by renewable fuel, as the launch project for another new element of our Beyond100 programme. Our powertrain engineers are already researching both biofuels and e-fuels for use by our customers alongside our electrification programme – with intermediate steps of adopting renewable fuels at the factory in Crewe and for our company fleet. In the meantime, the Continental GT3 Pikes Peak will show that renewable fuels can allow motorsport to continue in a responsible way, and hopefully it will capture the third and final record in our triple crown.”

Bentley’s pinnacle Pikes Peak project is being run in conjunction with British Continental GT3 customer team Fastr, who have successfully campaigned their Bentley race car in time attack competitions across the country. Technical teams from Bentley and Fastr are working together with specialists from M-Sport in Cumbria to extract the maximum possible performance from the Continental GT3 package, which will be run in Colorado by the same team and with assistance from K-PAX Racing.

To break the record, the car will have to complete the nearly 5,000 ft climb, which includes 156 corners, at an average speed of more than 78 mph to cross the finish line in less than nine minutes and 36 seconds. To help achieve this ambitious target, Bentley has once again turned to three-time Pikes Peak champion and former “King of the Mountain’ Rhys Millen (NZ) – who holds individual class records. It was with Millen that Bentley captured its two existing Pikes Peak records – the Production SUV record attained in 2018 with a Bentayga W12, and the outright Production Car record scored in 2019 with a Continental GT.

The Most Extreme Road-Car-Based Bentley in History

With the start line at 9,300 ft, the course climbs to 14,100 ft – where the air is 1/3 less dense than at sea level. This environment means that the Continental GT3 Pikes Peak features modifications both to its aerodynamics package and its engine, turning it into the most extreme iteration of a Continental GT – or indeed any Bentley road car – ever.

The biggest rear wing ever fitted to a Bentley dominates the rear of the car, sitting above a highly efficient rear diffuser that surrounds the transaxle gearbox. This rear aerodynamic package is balanced by a two-plane splitter at the front, flanked by separate dive planes.

The engine is Bentley’s proven racing power unit, developed from the 4.0-litre turbo V8 fitted to the Continental GT V8.  For the Continental GT3 Pikes Peak, engine modifications together with the use of carefully selected biofuel will ensure the engine develops significant horsepower despite the rarefied conditions it will operate in. Short side-exit exhausts will ensure the car sounds as dramatic as it looks.

Further modifications include cooling air scoops in place of the rear windows, and the obligatory stopwatch mounted to the roll cage next to the steering wheel, to allow Rhys Millen to keep track of his sector times up the mountain.

The Continental GT3 Pikes Peak now enters a major test and development phase, based initially in the UK before being shipped to the USA for altitude testing. An update on the progress of the car will be issued in May, ahead of the 99th running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on 27th June. More technical details about the Continental GT3 Pikes Peak will be released in due course.

Notes to editors

Bentley Motors is the most sought-after luxury car brand in the world. The company’s headquarters in Crewe is home to all of its operations including design, R&D, engineering, Mulliner and production of the company’s three model lines, Continental, Flying Spur, and Bentayga. The combination of fine craftsmanship, using skills that have been handed down through generations, alongside engineering expertise and cutting-edge technology is unique to UK luxury car brands such as Bentley. It is also an example of high-value British manufacturing at its best. Bentley employs around 4,000 people at Crewe.

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing
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Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

As part of its communications approach for the current Panamera models, Porsche is working together with one of the most famous faces in the fashion scene.

This is none other than the Creative Director of the Paris fashion label Balmain, Olivier Rousteing, who is launching a video series on social media together with the sports car manufacturer. The series of videos focuses on Rousteing’s exceptional personal story.

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Video series with the central theme “Drive Defined”

The short videos will be published on Porsche’s social media channels and Olivier Rousteing’s Instagram channel between the middle of March and the end of April. The central theme is entitled “Drive Defined” and relates to Rousteing’s powerful inner driving force. Many similarities between the fashion designer and the sports car brand also become clear here: Rousteing is renowned for repeatedly pushing boundaries. In this way, he has successfully guided the tradition-rich company Balmain into the young pop world in recent years and turned it into one of the most important Paris fashion houses.

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

“Olivier Rousteing is not just an authentic Porsche enthusiast, he is also a perfect fit for us with his desire to make Balmain a modern brand with the highest standards of quality and luxury,” says Jelena Batic who is responsible for the cooperation at Porsche. “Together, we explore his exceptional driving force in the films by examining the connection between the worlds of sports cars and fashion, which creates relevance for our existing customers, as well as for younger and female target groups.”

Fascination for Porsche since childhood

“I have a role in my world, to push the boundaries and to establish aesthetics, and a new world, the world that I want to live in,” says Olivier Rousteing, Creative Director at Balmain. “All of this fits perfectly with Porsche – a brand that has fascinated me since my childhood, and that stands for design and tradition combined with innovative strength.”

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Olivier Rousteing was born in 1985 in a confidential birth and was later adopted from an orphanage. He grew up in Bordeaux, and then attended the fashion school École supérieure des arts et techniques de la mode (ESMOD) in Paris. In 2011, he started work as Creative Director at Balmain at the age of just 25 – the youngest person to take on this role at a Paris fashion house since Yves Saint Laurent.

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

Porsche collaborates with Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing

The video series about the Porsche Panamera is a first step in the collaboration between Olivier Rousteing and Porsche. Further joint activities are being planned.

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BUGATTI CENTODIECI – First prototype for series development

The French luxury brand is paving the way for series production of its exclusive and unique hyper sports car.

Highly exclusive, distinctive and high-performance. At “The Quail – A Motorsports Gathering” in California in summer 2019, Bugatti presented another project reflecting its excellent coachbuilding expertise: the Centodieci. The Centodieci evokes automotive history: the unique project is a tribute to the legendary EB 110. This few-off project comprises production of just ten vehicles for an exclusive clientele. The next phase is about to start for the hyper sports car with a W16 engine and 1,600 PS: the first prototype for series development is currently being assembled.

The design of the Centodieci with its flat front, low-slung front spoiler and three-part air intakes reinterpret the shape of the most famous super sports car of the 1990s. The EB 110 was a key milestone on the road to the revival of the Bugatti brand in 1998 at Bugatti’s historic headquarters in Molsheim, ultimately resulting in the first hyper sports car of the modern era – the Veyron.

The Centodieci is Bugatti’s way of paying its respects to the Italian entrepreneur Romano Artioli and architect Giampaolo Benedini, the men who created the EB 110 some 30 years ago. “The challenge for us was not to get caught up in the design of the legendary EB 110 itself and avoid focusing solely on a retrospective approach. Our aim was to create a modern interpretation of the shape and technology of that time: but at the same time, we didn’t want to lose the charm and character of the EB 110.

After all, the super sports car is still fascinating today with its distinctive design and technology,” says Achim Anscheidt, Design Director at Bugatti. The biggest challenge: to transform the very flat, wedge-shaped and graphically virtually two-dimensional body of the EB 110 into a modern, three-dimensional sculpture to project the fascination of the super sports cars of that time into the modern age.

Since the world premiere of the Centodieci, the Bugatti development team has been working on the technical implementation of the strictly limited model. “Every newly developed vehicle poses an immense challenge, as we are creating a very small series that at the same time has to meet and even exceed all the quality and safety standards of a large series,” says André Kullig, technical project manager for one-off and few-off projects at Bugatti.

The engineers first delve into calculations for the body, aerodynamics, engine and transmission. They simulate the airflow on the vehicle and check all components down to the smallest screw.

Meanwhile, the design team checks the styling in close collaboration with the developers before finalising this and designing the surfaces. They adjust the curvature of the components according to the incidence of light so that the appearance is homogeneous in all lighting conditions – an elaborate development process. After well over a year of design and simulation, the team has now developed the first prototype.

“I was hugely looking forward to the first prototype of the Centodieci,” says Kullig, who has been with Bugatti since 2004 and was previously involved in projects such as the Divo and La Voiture Noire3. “Series development of a few-off project is an especially exciting challenge – and that is also true in the case of the Centodieci, which is a very design-driven project,” says Andre Kullig. His task is to ensure a perfect match between the exterior shape and the technology. Despite only producing ten vehicles, the Centodieci must meet all the same technical requirements as a Chiron.

“With the newly designed body, there are changes in many areas that we had to simulate using special computer programmes. Based on the data, we were able to establish a basic set-up as a starting point for series development and the first prototype,” explains André Kullig.

The team was recently able to successfully put the rolling chassis into operation on the site’s own roller dynamometer in the Molsheim Atelier and check all the drivetrain functions –to ensure the Centodieci can move onto the next stage of development. The next step is now to build the elaborate exterior. “With a high-performance hyper sports car like the Centodieci, it’s a matter of filtering out subtleties based on the modified requirements of a completely new exterior – something that requires highly focused and intense development work,” says André Kullig.

The technical challenges involved were enormous: an engine with eight litres of displacement and 1,600 PS generates high temperatures that require sophisticated thermal management. As in the EB 110, the engine is seen behind a transparent glass surface. So to ensure more efficient engine thermodynamics, the Centodieci has a wide air outlet opening and modified air flows. In addition, guide flaps around the five circular air inserts – positioned in the form of a rhombus – ensure sufficient air intake for the 16-cylinder power unit. As a result, the otherwise dominant Bugatti line, the C-line, gives way to a new design. The rear is formed into a large ventilation outlet opening defined by the eight rear light elements. Other development challenges include the new light elements and the rear wing design, which is permanently mounted in the style of the EB 110 Super Sport.

But even if the development team can simulate and test so much data on the test rigs, the Centodieci will also undergo dynamic testing. “In the next few months, in addition to building the exterior and running more advanced simulations in the wind tunnel, we’re very much looking forward to going out on the test track to start tuning the chassis,” says Kullig.

Within a few hours, all ten units of the Centodieci were sold out at a net price of eight million euros. The highly exclusive, hand-crafted small series will be delivered to customers next year.