Even collector cars are subjected to extreme testing.
You may be of the opinion that limited-edition hypercars with seven-figure price tags are little more than showpieces, and considering how low the mileage is when such vehicles come up for auction, you wouldn't be wrong. But the companies that build these hypercars don't cut corners.
Bugatti revealed the Centodieci back in 2019, but it still hasn't been finished. A couple of months back, we saw a video of it testing at the Nurburgring where it was being put through its paces alongside the Chiron Super Sport 300+. Things are moving steadily for the limited-edition hypercar, and now Bugatti has completed wind tunnel testing.
Subjected to wind speeds high enough for an airplane to take off - up to 300 kph (186 mph) - the Centodieci remains on the ground thanks to its clever aero. Bugatti places a band under each tire and another under the vehicle floor to simulate these high speeds so that the engineers can see how the air under the car and in the wheel wells behaves at high speed. Bugatti dismantles the driveshafts to "prevent the external drive of the wheels from transferring any forces into the vehicle. The vehicle is then fixed with nothing but four small pins in the underbody and its height is varied according to the testing plan."
The front diffuser flaps and rear wing are continually adjusted to find the perfect settings. In the production car, these aero addendums will be permanently fixed. "Even once we have identified the ideal settings, we continue to try others in order to see how the Centodieci responds," says Technical Project Manager André Kullig.
The team even alters the angle at which the air hits the car to determine how cornering at high speed would affect the car and to see if any part of the immense cooling system loses efficiency with different airflow.
Kullig says that this obsessive attention to detail is employed on every single car - even the one-of-one La Voiture Noire: "It makes no difference to us engineers whether we are developing a hyper sports car for one, ten or 500 units - the effort is the same, as we have and want to meet, even exceed the quality and safety standards applicable to mass production." Furthermore, with a unique front end that is flatter and boasts a smaller horseshoe grille, the wind obviously reacts differently than it would around a Chiron or Divo.
The EB110-inspired hypercar, of which just ten will be built, sold out in a matter of hours despite an asking price of €8 million (around $9.4 million at today's estimate).