Related Stories

The Bugatti Tourbillion, and the disposable supercar

The Bugatti Tourbillion is a V-16, 1,775 horsepower monster worth over $4.5 million dollars. But do supercars like this hold their value?


I’m shocked – over 70% of you pick the Z4. Good car value. Now, this is a special edition of Talk Me Out Of It because we’re going to feature a car that, if I’m honest, has never made much sense: The Bugatti Tourbillion (and its origin story, the Veyron). While any exotic supercar offers performance that you can’t exploit on the road, the Tourbillion takes it to another level.

Think it’ll appreciate? Let’s see.

What is the Bugatti Tourbillion?

Bugatti Tourbillion
Tiburon? Wait, that’s a Hyundai. Photo: Bugatti

Designed in conjunction with Rimac (they now own part of Bugatti), the Tourbillion is a monster:

  • An all-new 8.3-liter cross-plane crank V-16 (same as a flat-plane crank V-8) that spins to 9,000 RPM. It replaces the Chiron’s old V-16.
  • 986 horsepower, 664 lb-ft of torque. Cosworth helped design the engine, and there’s not a turbocharger in sight.
  • There are also three electric motors (two in the front, one in the back) that make 789 horsepower. Combined, that’s 1,775 French, English and Croatian horses.
  • You can drive up to 30 miles on electric power alone, so yay for that.

There’s much more, including a carbon fiber body, dihedral doors that separate the cabin, an eight-speed DCT, and a top speed of 277 MPH. It’ll reach 60 in 2 seconds, and 250 MPH in 25 seconds.

It is at this point that I will point out a Corvette E-Ray, which works pretty much the same way, costs about $120,000.


Bugatti Tourbillion

Tourbillion is a word that relates to fine watches, and on the inside, the Bugatti is brilliant. Sit inside and find the gauge cluster (built by a Swiss watchmaker with milled sapphire crystal) attached to the steering column, so it’s never obscured by the wheel. There’s a single digital screen that’s optional and can fold away.

Frank Heyl, director of design for Bugatti Rimac, was smart to keep in mind that a car like this should be “relevant at a concours in 2075 without looking silly in a time that will have holographic displays or augmented-reality contact lenses. Give the entire interior an analog way that you can interact with it.”

Bugatti Tourbillion
Photo: Bugatti

You can customize the interior to any watch brand you happen to like. And though it looks like a Chiron, it’s a completely new car.

Want one? It costs $4.6 million, just 250 will be made, and it’s already sold out. You had to already be a Bugatti or Rimac customer to get your order in.

I have no idea what a V-16 cross-plane engine sounds like, but this Bugatti Tourbillion is a car I doubt I’ll ever see in the flesh.

But if you do want a Bugatti…

There are plenty of older ones around

Photo: DuPont

So, Talk Me Out Of It then. Here’s a “run of the mill” Veyron, listed for $1.7 million. Now remember, this car is still relevant as a supercar today, with a 250 MPH top speed and a 0-60 time of 2.5 seconds.

How about more numbers. It gets 11 MPG on a good day. A set of tires costs $40,000. A new transmission, $130,000. It’s also ugly. I digress. This one has 10,000 miles on it (Is that a lot? Feels like it).

The Veyron has not appreciated – it was available for about $1.8 million in 2008, so with inflation the car is worth quite a bit less. 450 Veyrons were made worldwide, making it a limited supply.

What about the Chiron?

Bugatti Chiron
Photo: DuPont

The Chiron replaced the Veyron in 2016, and about 500 examples were made. But look at this – there are a ton available.

Let’s take a 2023. It’s a Pur Sport, the best of the breed, which cost $3.6 million new. Now, it’s at $4.9 million, but with only a handful ever made and just ending production last year, it’s still in the FOMO phase. Plenty of examples can be had for less, but for now the car looks like a good investment.

Still, with so many available despite so few made – it’s not a good look for a car. Wouldn’t you rather have a Ferrari?

Volkswagen themselves have admitted that without Rimac, Bugatti would be dead, as they had no desire to license or design the technology that went into the Tourbillion on their own.

Was it worth saving?

Want MWS to review your car?

If you live in the tri-state area and would like to be featured, contact me!

Each review comes with a free professional photo shoot.

Support Machines With Souls

Nikon camera bodies and lenses, a Westcott Ice Light 2, Manfrotto tripod, B + W filters and an iMac Pro are used to make the art on Machines With Souls.

One thought on “The Bugatti Tourbillion, and the disposable supercar

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *