The $3 million dollar Bugatti Chiron and its 1,500 horsepower just set yet another world record. Driven by Juan Pablo Montoya, one of the best race drivers in the world, the Chiron ran from 0-400 km/h (249 mph) and then back to zero again in a mere 32.6 seconds, traveling a total of 1.43 miles.
Wolfgang Dürheimer, President of Bugatti Automobiles, made the announcement: “Bugatti is the first car brand that not only calculates how fast a car can go from zero to 400 to zero on a computer. We actually drove it. Where others are satisfied with theory, we validate our data with real-life values. Just like we did with the Chiron.”
For those who want to know, the Bugatti Chiron runs with an 8-liter quad-turbo sixteen-cylinder engine shaped like a W. It produces 1,500 horsepower and weighs only 4,000 pounds. Stopping all of that motive force are carbon ceramic brake discs that measure 420mm up front and 400 mm in the rear. The calipers are made with titanium pistons, eight per front disc, six per rear disc.
The motive force was controlled by Montoya carefully to push the car forward without traction loss. Once reaching top speed, the driver hit the brakes. That triggers a series of events for which the Chiron is specifically designed: the rear wing tilted to a 49-degree angle in less than one second. That 1.5-meter rear wing is then forming an air brake to aid the physical friction brakes below. Downforce on the rear axle increases by about 2,000 pounds and the vehicle slows at about 2 gravity (2G).
All of this translates into a powerful forward movement followed by a stopping force that probably required a fairly expensive brake pad change afterwards, but which easily set the world record.