The world's fastest road car, the Bugatti Veyron 16.4, just lost its head. The new Grand Sport convertible features lots of new features, including a soft-top deployed via the aid of an umbrella-style mechanism.
When fast isn't enough
At the recent Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance, Bugatti debuted its mostly-all-new Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport. We say almost because the Grand Sport is powered by the same 1001 horsepower (736kW) quad-turbocharged 16-cylinder engine as the standard Veyron 16.4, but features a new lightweight removable hardtop.
Other new features on the Grand Sport include LED headlights, a new wheel design, a stiffer chassis to compensate for the lack of a fixed roof, a backup camera and a new sound system designed for convertible use.
With the hard top in place, the Grand Sport is capable of a top speed of 407km/h. Remove the roof and the Veyron will limit you to a modest 350km/h, making the Grand Sport the world's fastest convertible.
Deploy the umbrella Jeeves
The Grand Sport isn't a "true" convertible and removing the hard top means leaving it at home. So, in case of rain, the Bugatti comes with an emergency soft top stowed in its trunk. Installing this cloth top, via it's uber-cool umbrella mechanism, will, however, electronically limit the Veyron to a paltry 130km/h top speed.
The first Grand Sport was auctioned off for a cool US$2.9 million, which quickly escalated to US$3.19 million after addition of auction fees. That price includes accomodation near the Molsheim factory in France as the car is being built and customised to the buyer's specifications.