Designed To Drive: La Voiture Noire Among Bugatti Legends At SOC Croatia

At the very heart of Bugatti lies a desire to create the best driving machines on the planet. Timelessly beautiful, ultimately luxurious and incomparably fast, but always designed to be used and enjoyed. At the Supercar Owners Circle event in Croatia, from 2-5 September, customers drove more than 1,000km in examples of every Bugatti hyper sports car in the modern line-up, including the one-of-one La Voiture Noire.This one-off piece of automotive haute couture is the ultimate illustration of Bugatti’s mastery of engineering and design at the very highest levels. In homage to the famous lost Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic, itself known as ‘La Voiture Noire’, this extraordinary car features an entirely bespoke design. Each and every cell of the 3D-printed front grille has been honed to perfection. There are more than 25 individually milled light elements per side in the headlights, while the rear is dominated by an elegant tail-light, which for the first time features a single-piece surround with no joints. Six individual tailpipes serve as a nod to the vehicle’s spiritual predecessor, and a newly developed parametric design at the front and rear means the body parts appear to be sealed.

Despite being a one-off, La Voiture Noire¹ was subject to the same durability and safety tests as every other Bugatti. This ensured it could be enjoyed by its current owner in all conditions and at the peak of its performance – as it was driven, during the four-day Supercar Owners Circle (SOC) tour in Croatia, the largest hypercar driving experience in automotive history.

La Voiture Noire was joined in Croatia by the first Centodieci² and a Divo³, a Chiron Super Sport 300+⁴, Chiron Super Sport⁵, Chiron L’Ébe, Chiron Pur Sport⁶, Chiron Sport⁷ and four Chiron⁸. From the Veyron era was a rare Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse World Record Edition. Each of these masterpieces began the SOC event with a drive into the mountains near Zagreb for a hillclimb, along the twisting roads that are the natural habitat for Divo and Chiron Pur Sport, both specially designed with a focus on additional downforce and agility.

From the beautiful mountainous region of Sljeme, the SOC convoy headed for Zagreb city center under police escort for a public display of the cars just in front of Zagreb Cathedral. A crowd of thousands took the opportunity to admire the precious gold highlights of Chiron L’Ébe and the unique coachbuilt design of Centodieci, the latter developed in homage to the legendary Bugatti EB110. It’s a rarity to see even one Bugatti on the road, so to experience all of these cars in one place was truly a once-in-a-lifetime occasion.

On the morning of Saturday 3 September, the SOC convoy of the world’s greatest performance cars made its way to the Velika Gorica ZTC, for another public display on the airport’s closed runway. Crowds could experience the full fury of Bugatti’s iconic 8.0-liter quad-turbocharged engine, unleashed within record-breaking production cars such as the Chiron Super Sport 300+ and Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse World Record Edition.

That afternoon, the guests set off for the beautiful Adriatic coastal town of Sibenik, a journey of almost 400km (250 miles). For the remainder of the weekend they would explore the striking coast roads, heading to the island of Pag and back to the mainland via ferry, then joining the Magistrala road to return to Sibenik for the conclusion of the tour.

Bugatti Rimac CEO Mate Rimac said: “It’s a real honor for me to welcome the Supercar Owners Circle back to the country that I call home for the second year in a row. Our customers have shown just how truly passionate they are about the Bugatti brand, choosing to share their extraordinarily rare and special cars with the enthusiastic Croatian public. It is very much in the spirit of Ettore Bugatti that every car that leaves our atelier – even those that are totally unique – can still be driven and enjoyed, able to travel 1,000km in comfort, hit record speeds on a closed runway or tackle twisting mountain roads.”

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