The latest from Bugatti is a new wave pop band, known for strange hats and yellow suits. Wait, no, that's not right. The Divo is named for a man who sported a fancy hat, but this one is about outright cornering grip, not what to do when a problem comes along.
The Chiron is built for spine compressing acceleration and a top speed that can outpace light aircraft. But Bugatti engineers wanted to make a car that could corner as extremely hard as it could go fast. Enter the Divo, built on the same shell but with a different purpose.
It starts with a completely revised nose. The front intakes are bigger to allow for more cooling and air extractors behind the wheel arches pull air out. All four wheels get extra brake cooling, and there's even a heat shield to help control tire temperatures. The entire roof is a massive air duct, sending more air into the engine compartment. Again for cooling, not for burning. Then there's the new front splitter. And a massive new rear diffuser that works with an adjustable spoiler that is 1.83 metres wide. 23 percent wider than the Chiron's. The changes up the downforce by 90 kg, giving the car around 450 kg of downward shove.
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The curb weight of the Divo has been trimmed by 35 kg compared with the Chiron thanks to fixed front diffuser flaps, less insulation, a lighter sound system, lighter wheels, and by dropping some storage compartments. The suspension has been modified to provide a "more direct response and sportier driving behaviour." The result is an astounding 1.6 g of maximum cornering force. The car can lap the 6.2 km Nardo handling course a whole eight seconds quicker than the Chiron.
Since even a 1,500 hp 16-cylinder supercar is a series of compromises, some parts of the car's performance must suffer. Here, it's the top speed. While the Chiron runs into its electronic limiter at around 420 km/h, the Divo is limited to a piddling 380.
Of course, there are non-cornering related interior changes too. Like a special-finish carbon trim, Divo Racing Blue Alcantara, and larger armrests and calf supports to make the center console more comfortable. When you're being shoved into it.
The car is named for Albert Divo. The French driver competed in races like the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy and won the Targa Florio in 1928 and 1929. Behind the wheel of a Bugatti Type 35.
The company is making 40 Divos, and yes they're going to be road legal. The price will be a nice round five million Euro. Or around 7.6 million Canadian. Though even at that price the cars sold out faster than, well, just about anything. "We showed the Divo to a small group of selected Chiron customers. All 40 cars were sold immediately," said Bugatti President Stephan Winkelmann.