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All I want for Christmas: the world’s fastest car, the Bugatti Veyron, has been sold to a mystery buyer in Australia even though it cannot be driven on local roads.
The world’s fastest car -- the Bugatti Veyron, which has a top speed of 431km/h, almost twice the speed that planes take off -- has been sold to a mystery buyer in Australia even though it cannot be driven on local roads.
A secondhand Veyron has appeared in the Classic Throttle Shop in Sydney parked alongside a classic Mini Moke and an old Porsche.
It has been on display for less than a week and the company says it has been sold to an anonymous buyer.
But the buyer won’t be too anonymous: this Veyron is believed to be the only one in Australia, other than the one that was flown to Australia briefly for a demonstration lap at the Formula One Grand Prix in 2009.
“We don’t want to give away any details,” said Classic Throttle Shop salesman Matthew Dickson. “The owner wants to remain anonymous.”
The company would not disclose how much the buyer paid but the Veyron cost 1 million Euros plus taxes when new.
If it were sold as new in Australia the Veyron would have cost about $3 million once exchange rates, taxes and Luxury Car Tax (33 per cent of the price above $61,884) is taken into account.
But the Veyron was never officially sold in Australia by Bugatti because it was built in left-hand-drive only.
Collectors the world over have given the car icon status.
Earlier this year US talent scout, TV star and One Direction creator, Simon Cowell, sold his 2008 Veyron at auction for $US1.375 million.
The Bugatti Veyron is powered by a massive 8.0-litre W16 engine with four turbochargers. It originally had 1001 horsepower but was upgraded to 1200 horsepower in 2012. It blasts from 0 to 100km/h in about 2.5 seconds, as fast as a Formula One car.
Only about 400 have been built since 2005. Bugatti has sold out of the 300 coupes it originally built, and fewer than 40 of the 150 roadsters, introduced in 2012 remain before production ends in late 2015.
Other specialist companies claim to have beaten the Veyron’s record but they are one-off specials and the top-speed was not done to Guinness World Record standards (the average speed over 1km in both directions to account for changes in weather and test track conditions).
Meanwhile, Bugatti has formally axed plans to build what was to become the world’s fastest ever sedan, and officially confirmed it will build a successor to the Veyron.
Bugatti boss, Dr Wolfgang Schreiber, told the UK’s Top Gear magazine earlier this year: “There will not be a four-door Bugatti. We have talked many, many times about the Galibier, but this car will not come because ... it would confuse our customers.”
Bugatti has reportedly made a loss of every one of the more than 400 Veyrons it has built despite a price of more than 1 million Euros plus taxes.
“With the Veyron, we placed Bugatti on top of all super-sportscar brands in the whole world. Everyone knows that Bugatti is the ultimate super sportscar,” Dr Schreiber told Top Gear. “It’s easier for current owners, and others who are interested, to understand if we do something similar to the Veyron (next). And that is what we will do.”
Bugatti unveiled the Galibier sedan concept in 2009, just after the Global Financial Crisis took hold, but had been relatively quiet on its development since then.
When asked if Bugatti would send the Veyron out with a much-rumoured bang after it built a special edition capable of 431km/h in 2010 (up from the 408km/h top speed of the original) Dr Schreiber told Top Gear: “We will not produce a ‘SuperVeyron' or Veyron Plus, definitely. There will be no more power. 1200 (horsepower) is enough for the chapter of Veyron and its derivatives.”
Dr Schreiber said the new Veyron would have to “redefine the benchmarks … and the benchmark today is still the current Veyron. We are already working on it (the successor)."
The German Volkswagen Group bought the French supercar brand Bugatti in 1998 and immediately commenced work on the Veyron. After several concept cars and numerous delays the production version was finally unveiled in 2005.
During the Veyron’s development, engineers struggled with cooling the massive W16 engine, which has four turbochargers. Despite having 10 radiators, one of the prototype cars caught fire on the Nurburgring racing circuit during testing.
The original Veyron, powered by an 8.0-litre quad-turbocharged W16 engine (two V8s mounted back-to-back), had 1001 horsepower (736kW) and 1250Nm of torque.
With power delivered to all four wheels via an all-wheel-drive system and a seven-speed dual clutch “DSG” gearbox, the Veyron could do the 0 to 100km/h dash in 2.46 seconds.
On the Veyron’s top-speed run it gulped 78L/100km, more than a V8 Supercar race machine at full speed, and ran the tank out of fuel in 20 minutes. By way of comparison a Toyota Prius sips 3.9L/100km.
The Bugatti Veyron claimed the Guinness World Record for the fastest production car with a top speed of 408.47km/h on Volkswagen’s private test track at Ehra-Lessien in northern Germany in April 2005.
In June 2010, Bugatti beat its own top-speed record with the Veyron SuperSport, which had the same W16 engine but with power increased to 1200 horsepower (895kW) and 1500Nm of torque. It managed a staggering 431.072km/h.
Of the production run of 30 Veyron SuperSports, five were named the SuperSport World Record Edition, which had the electronic limiter switched off to enable them to reach 431km/h. The remainder were limited to 415km/h.
The original Veyron cost 1 million Euros plus taxes, but the fastest Veyron of all time, the SuperSport, cost almost double: 1.99 million Euros plus taxes.
In September a US man transformed a 2004 Holden Monaro into a replica of the Bugatti Veyron.
The car restorer in Florida has advertised the home-made re-creation on online auction website eBay and he wanted someone to pay $115,000 so he could finish building it.
The plastic-bodied backyard build was based on a 2004 Pontiac GTO, which is the US version of the Holden Monaro.