No car better represents automotive excess than the Bugatti Veyron (not shown, above – that’s the prototype ID90), with its 8.0 liter V16 quad-turbocharged engine belting out as much as 987 horsepower and dashing from 0 to 60 MPH in just 2.6 seconds. It can suck down all 26 gallons of fuel in just 12 minutes at top speed, topping out somewhere north of 260 MPH. But Reuters reports that the successor to the Bugatti Veyron could go in a different direction; hybrid.
That isn’t to say the V16 engine is dead. More likely, the 1,000 horsepower mill will be aided by a 500 horsepower hybrid system, which could bring total output into the 1,500 horsepower neighborhood. That means the 2016 Bugatti hybrid could pack as much as 50% more power than the outgoing Veyron, which is expected to meet its 450 unit limit in the next year or so. Beyond those few details though, don’t expect a new Bugatti hypercar for a while yet, as the German-owned French automaker still seems undecided on their new direction.
Hybrid is a great choice for the 2016 Bugatti (2017?, 2018?), no doubt, as there are a growing number of hybrid hypercars such as the 963 horsepower LaFerrari and 887 horsepower Porsche 918 Spyder edging in on Bugatti’s dominance. If Bugatti really wanted to blow some minds though, it would be a no-expense-spared all-electric hypercar with at least 200 miles of driving range and mind-blowing levels of torque. With Tesla opening its Supercharger patents to other automakers, Bugatti could just plug it into an existing charging network. Then again, that might be too drastic of a change for would-be buyers who are expecting an earth-shattering roar every time they stomp the pedal.
Somebody is going to do it eventually though, and if Bugatti wants to stay on top, they might have to do something drastic.