Home » Bugatti: Screw It, We’re Putting A V16 Into Our Next Hypercar

Bugatti: Screw It, We’re Putting A V16 Into Our Next Hypercar

Bugatti V16 Ts2
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The era of the VR and W engines is over. Volkswagen has killed the VR6 in America, Bentley is winding down production of the W12, and even Bugatti is looking beyond the W16. The Piech-era eight-liter behemoth responsible for a litany of production car speed records and rap bars is on its way out, and that gave fans cause for concern. What would Bugatti replace it with? With downsizing and augmentation through electricity being so in right now, perhaps a V12 or, gasp, a V8? Nope. V16, motherlovers.

That’s right, the next Bugatti will feature a V16 engine with hybrid assistance, and this is huge news because we haven’t seen a traditional V16 in a production car since 1940, when Cadillac called it quits on the configuration. The closest we’ve come was the transverse monster in the Cizeta-Moroder V16T, although that was far from conventional. It had eight camshafts, two crankshafts, a gearset to turn engine output by 90 degrees, and was so much more bonkers than you expected.

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Anyway, I’m getting sidetracked. On Thursday, Bugatti released a video teasing its next era of internal combustion, and what we’re seeing looks positively scintillating. From the alien carbon fiber intake manifold stretching out into the great beyond to the masterful engraving of the firing order, this V16 certainly looks like it belongs in a seven-figure car.

Oh, and then there’s the aural intensity of this engine. It sounds like a Grizzly Bear being ripped in half, with a velvet-gloved laser-honed fury the outgoing W16 just doesn’t match. If the old engine was seismic activity, this new V16 is Armageddon. It’s astounding, captivating, unchained from the Earth. Never in my life did I expect to see an all-new V16 slated for a production car, and yet, here it is. Better still, it’s hybrid-assisted, so you could even call it green at a stretch.

Bugatti V16 1

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So how soon can we expect to see this V16 in a car? Well, at the 2024 Canadian International Auto Show, Bugatti-Rimac CEO Mate Rimac said that the Chiron replacement is already being shown to customers, and that we can expect a debut later this year. Indeed, a recent press release suggest a June debut for the engine, and chances are we might see an entire car around it.

We don’t know official performance specifications, displacement, or even the level of hybridization of Bugatti’s new V16, but the rumormill’s churning so hard it’s frothing. According to TheSupercarBlog.com:

sources have told us that the V16 engine has been developed by Cosworth. It’s an 8.3-liter naturally aspirated motor that revs to 9000 rpm. The internal combustion engine will be paired with three electric motors for a combined output of 1800 hp.

For now, one thing’s for certain: The Bugatti brand still dares to do what everyone else won’t. It’s not content with complacency, it’s intent on remaining the king, and this ludicrous, glorious engine suggests the crown of popular perception shall remain firmly atop its head.

(Photo credits: Bugatti, Amalgam)

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Jmfecon
Jmfecon
1 month ago

Wish we could “have” a Rolls Royce (or even, god forbid, a Bentley) with a similar engine, but tuned for comfort.

Afterall, everybody knows that more cylinders means a better engine. Usually. let’s forget first version of N63 for a moment…

OCS-BN
OCS-BN
1 month ago

As part of my studies, I spent a 6 month internship at the German engine developer that did the W16 design and testing for Bugatti. I’m proud to tell that I actually designed part of the original engine. I believe it was a little plug for some oil port. I also did some design work for the test stands. And there was a front-mounted naturally aspirated variant intended for a large sedan or coupe. I worked on the machining drawings for its intake manifolds. That’s why I have a soft spot for the Veyron, even so I generally dislike supercars.

Jmfecon
Jmfecon
1 month ago
Reply to  OCS-BN

I remember that sedan prototype, was gorgeous for the time. Sad that it doesn’t saw the daylight.

MaximillianMeen
MaximillianMeen
1 month ago

we haven’t seen a traditional V16 in a production car since 1940,

What? No faith that the Devel 16 will ever make it to production?

World24
World24
1 month ago

That engine note is seriously becoming my favorite one, ever. When people talked about how “orgasmic” other engines sounded, I thought “yeah, I believe it” once I listened to them.
But MAN, I’m thinking I was wrong about the others after listening to that glorious engine.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  World24

You just have never listened to a naturally aspirated Detroit in person.

World24
World24
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

Can’t confirm or deny that I have. I’m assuming you mean Detroit Diesel, and I know I’ve heard quite a few different diesels before. My hometown is known for an obscure truck company: Brockway. They used various diesels all the way until Mack had decided to discontinue the line after buying the company in like ’72, and I haven’t learned all of what they used throughout the years.
Generally, I haven’t been a fan of diesel engine notes, though I enjoy the noise that a 6BT or ISB6.7 makes straight piped and revving to the moon (for a big diesel engine, the 4-5000 rpm’s they do).

Last edited 1 month ago by World24
Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  World24

Yeah a two stroke Detroit diesel. They sound VERY different from any four stroke diesel, and because it’s 2 stroke vs 4 stroke, a Detroit at 3000rpm is the same pitch as a four stroke at 6000rpm, which is totally insane for a heavy duty diesel.

If you look up Detroit noises on YouTube, you’ll see what I mean. My favorite sound wise is a 6-71 naturally aspirated, but lots of people like the bigger eight and twelve cylinder ones.

Urban Runabout
Urban Runabout
1 month ago

This makes more sense than the W16
Just take two Audi 4.0L V8s and bolt them together with two parallel computer control modules and four overhead valve and cam units rather than two.
Bingo-Bongo – It’s a Bugatti V16.

Last edited 1 month ago by Urban Runabout
Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  Urban Runabout

Kinda like the LS v16s that a couple people have built? I think the biggest problem with this(I mean, all engines this long honestly) is that one of the crankshafts now has to handle double the horsepower, and there may not be clearance in the block to fit a big enough crank. That’s why the Cizeta v16 has two v8s back to back and they output power from the middle.

Urban Runabout
Urban Runabout
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

At least nine bearings and beefed up crank for sure.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago

Honestly in some ways it should be even more insane. V16? Impressive, but they already made a 16 cylinder engine. They could have one upped themselves with the three bank w18 idea they talked about 20 years ago, or they could’ve made something wild like an X20.

And 8.3 liters? Yeah that’s big, but not bigger than the Viper or the Cadillac 500. 8.0L+ engines have been done already. This is the kind of car to be the biggest displacement of all time, I think they should have shot for 10 liters.

The Veyron was totally insane and totally Top Dog when it came out. Being the first 1000hp(ish) car when the next most powerful car was what, maybe 700hp? Being the first 16 cylinder car in decades. Being the only quad(!) turbo car(not the first though). AWD when that was still a rare and cool thing, especially on this type of car.

If they want to get the same kind of insane wow factor, they need something way crazier. Be the first 2000hp car or first 20 cylinder car or the first car with 3 superchargers and 6 turbos or something crazy like that.

Dan Manwich
Dan Manwich
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

In the age of minimizing cylinders and adding hybrid or going full electric, a 16 cylinder hybrid is absolutely bonkers.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  Dan Manwich

It is bonkers, but Bugatti isn’t about being bonkers relative to the rest of the market. They could have done something more insane than what they’ve done before.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago

American speed has always been the better value vs European speed, but in terms of total size, power, ect. Chevy really shouldn’t be one upping Bugatti.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

To be pedantic, 8.3L is a little bigger than the Cadillac 500.

It is smaller than the 2008-17 Viper though.

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

Well, Porsche has found out that larger displacement engines are actually easier to get through emissions and fuel economy regulations than smaller turbo engines.

Thomas Metcalf
Thomas Metcalf
1 month ago

Interesting! Do you have an article or something about this that you could recommend? It seems like we have been downsizing for almost 20 years and when the ford 7.3 L Godzilla engine was released, it started me wondering if the trend was going to reverse a bit.

Dumb Shadetree
Dumb Shadetree
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

Ehhh… I’m on board with the V16. What I want to see is a hybrid system that captures braking energy and uses it to feed an electric supercharger large enough to meaningfully boost power on that V16 without the pumping losses of a belt-driven supercharger. These engines can be built for power, not reliability, so we should be able to get well over 2,000 hp from an 8.3L twin-charged V16.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  Dumb Shadetree

That would be cool, but I’m guessing that just using the electricity to drive the wheels is a much more efficient way to go fast, and that’s why they’re doing what they’re doing.

Dumb Shadetree
Dumb Shadetree
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

Totally fair. My wishlist is “cool tech” more than efficiency, and I know that’s unreasonable.

Bjorn A. Payne Diaz
Bjorn A. Payne Diaz
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

I was hoping for a VR16.

Cerberus
Cerberus
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

Ten liters would still be smaller than the real Bugatti’s 12.8L I8 engine from the Royale (and a train).

Matt Sexton
Matt Sexton
1 month ago

You had your chance, Cadillac, and you fucking blew it.

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
1 month ago
Reply to  Matt Sexton

They blew it twice- they had new V16 prototypes running in the ’60s that were also totally buildable

Matt Sexton
Matt Sexton
1 month ago
Reply to  Ranwhenparked

I spent a long time looking at that engine on the stand at the Chicago Auto Show that year, and I tell you that thing was production ready. And Cadillac has V16 history. Such a damn shame.

Last edited 1 month ago by Matt Sexton
Protodite
Protodite
1 month ago
Reply to  Ranwhenparked

Woah I’d never seen those 60s concepts, absolutely sick

Spikedlemon
Spikedlemon
1 month ago

That’s got to be one looooooong engine block.

Mattias
Mattias
1 month ago
Reply to  Spikedlemon

As long as two VW Polo blocks together…

Phuzz
Phuzz
1 month ago
Reply to  Mattias

You know that a crazy Kiwi managed to fit an Audi V8 into a Polo?
https://www.vask.org.nz/polo-lupo-up!/polo-4-2-v8-transplant

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  Spikedlemon

I mean, no longer than a straight eight, and there used to be a number of straight eights in the neighborhood of 4 liters. If you look under the hood of an old straight eight Packard or something, it’s long, but not really longer than a big straight six like my Ford 300 six. Definitely shorter than a Cummins.

Chronometric
Chronometric
1 month ago
Reply to  Spikedlemon

Yeah, Adrian is going to hate that dash to axle ratio.

Spikedlemon
Spikedlemon
1 month ago
Reply to  Chronometric

or rear overhang

Chronometric
Chronometric
1 month ago
Reply to  Spikedlemon

Maybe it will have really big wheels.

Mattias
Mattias
1 month ago

The teaser seems to hint on a 45 degree bank angle.

Alexk98
Alexk98
1 month ago

Anyone know what the going rate of body parts and organs are on the black market? I’m sure I could make due with a few less than I’ve got

Alexk98
Alexk98
1 month ago
Reply to  Alexk98

Better yet, if we get 364 other people to each chip in a Kidney and Half a Liver I bet we could scrounge up the purchase price, and we each get a day a year to enjoy it. Since the liver regenerates we can use that as our bank for the maintenance costs. I see no downsides.

Taco Shackleford
Taco Shackleford
1 month ago
Reply to  Alexk98

I’m in! having 2 kidneys is just taking up internal storage space.

Alexk98
Alexk98
1 month ago

Simplify and add Lightness, just as Colin Chapman would have wanted

Taco Shackleford
Taco Shackleford
1 month ago
Reply to  Alexk98

It’ll make us that much faster in the Bugatti.

Jason Roth
Jason Roth
1 month ago

OK, that engine sound really is astonishing.

Iain Delaney
Iain Delaney
1 month ago

The V16 is the easy part. The hard part will be the Crazy Glue-dispensing tires to keep the damned thing on the road.

MaximillianMeen
MaximillianMeen
1 month ago
Reply to  Iain Delaney

Hmmm, maybe it’s time to revisit the Panther 6. As Rust Buckets mentioned, Bugatti is known for over-the-top super cars. A 6wd super car would get some attention.

If that isn’t enough traction, maybe a half-track or even full-track. A street-legal, V16, hybrid Ripsaw competitor would be incredulous!

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago

I was thinking about that. Having more than four wheels is an insurmountable flex.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago

It makes sense.

If you’re Bugatti, your entire reason for existing is offering things no one else can or will. An EV, no matter how powerful, isn’t going to move the needle at $5M or whatever. After all, we live in a world where $200K Lucid sedans run 8s off the showroom floor and we just got done discussing Tesla claiming Top Fuel-esque acceleration for a Roadster and the collective response is mostly meh.

Cylinder count is still prestige.

Oh, and Cadillac really fucked up not building their Sixteen two decades ago.

Last edited 1 month ago by V10omous
Angrycat Meowmeow
Angrycat Meowmeow
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

Wonder what Adrian thinks about the dash to axle on that sucker

Chronometric
Chronometric
1 month ago

Damn I made the same comment a day later…

MegaVan
MegaVan
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

I was supposed to buy a depreciated Sixteen by now. Stop rubbing it in.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago
Reply to  MegaVan

You and me both.

Matt Sexton
Matt Sexton
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

I said the same thing about Cadillac as soon as I saw this article, and then I scrolled down and saw your answer. Great minds think alike.

Aaron
Aaron
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

The Sixteen was one of many Cadillac concepts that should have made it to production over the past two decades. The Cien and Ciel are the other two that come to mind.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago
Reply to  Aaron

The Elmiraj is the best looking concept car anyone has built in my lifetime. I would have bought one instantly on the auto show floor if it was going into production.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

Had to look it up. It kinda just looks like every other art and science Cadillac, except without a b pillar. Eh.

But I’ve never been a fan of art and science Cadillacs, some of which are quite ugly.

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 month ago

My money is that it’ll still be a quad turbo monster, but with Lamborghini Revuelto transmission and similar hybrid setup.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago

They literally said naturally aspirated, which surprised me

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

sources have told us 

So big ole quotes around that

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
1 month ago

Yes, but their audio sounds awfully naturally aspirated, and if it really is Cosworth developing this(it likely is, no other company makes stuff this crazy, not even Bugatti/Rimac, who made the w16 from existing production engines) then it’s even more likely, since Cosworth seems to like naturally aspirated engines. I wouldn’t be surprised if this shares some engineering architecture with the Aston Martin Valkyrie and Gordon Murray t50 v12s.

The four throttle bodies could be on a naturally aspirated or turbo engine, but if it is a turbo engine, you’re right it would definitely be four of them.

Chartreuse Bison
Chartreuse Bison
1 month ago
Reply to  Rust Buckets

The electric is filling in the power curver where the turbos used to, I guess

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