Theodora Ong lusts after a £1.55 million 2013 Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport that currently sports the registration plate ‘BIG 3’ – but could become ‘BUG 8’
The Steeples Times’ classic cars columnist Theodora Ong is back on the road after the pandemic lockdowns and is all set for essential-journey test drives – or, in this case, is still dreaming of them.
So, you didn’t get out much during 2020 and you’ve saved a fair bit. Staycation country jaunts sound like the safest plan for no-hassle cruising, so, today, I share with you something a little more modern than my normal automobile offerings.
Ready for you to drive away is this rare Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport. One of only 58 produced, it’s a UK-registered supermobile, but you are unlikely to have spotted it running around as it’s clocked up just 2,220 miles (3,574 kms).
Right now, this gleaming pearly white Grand Sport is in a secret location in the custody of classic & supercars specialists Graeme Hunt Ltd. They say it’s definitely for driving now rather than to be swaddled up in storage. Well, who wouldn’t want to get some sunshine bouncing off its curvy armour-like shell, designed to profile its muscle structure and ferocious 7993cc – with pano roof down right now?
When the Bugatti Veyron was launched, it redefined sports motoring on the road, in the way that only every decade or so, a new contender explodes on the scene. This is a hypercar of extreme concept fully realised. Its 0 to 60 in just over 2 seconds is too simplistic a way to describe its abilities. It’s a car you can feel; the dealer describes the noise you hear when firing it up as “utterly charming, the oils and fluids pulsing around the engine warming up the 16 cylinders make you just sizzle with excitement,” though I am still waiting to share the flutter of elation from an ever-hopeful outing.
With the heritage of Italian-born industrial designer Ettore Bugatti and memorable Grand Prix victories, the 21st century Bugatti is a brand of our Euro-age, as a French subsidiary of Volkswagen AG. After some six years in concept, the Veyron was launched in 2005, and models of increasing refinement rolled off for nearly a decade after. Four turbochargers produced 1001 horsepower offering a top speed of 253 mph (407 km/h) and the price was announced at £880,000 ($1.2 million, €1 million or درهم4.5 million). It sealed its iconic status when the BBC’s Top Gear compared it to Concorde.
And who are amongst the greatest who have sought the greatest? Tom Cruise set the pace of the Mission Impossible III premiere by arriving in a Bugatti Veyron. Beyoncé gifted one to Jay-Z, and the Veyron’s speed and slick looks lured sportsmen Cristiano Ronaldo and Floyd Mayweather Jr and lifestyle designer Ralph Lauren, plus a sizeable clutch of big-time rappers and R&B dukes.
Jazzy customisations and two-tone body paint on Veyrons have been plenty, so it’s soothing to see our pearly king sporting a restrained black interior. It’s currently number plated as ‘BIG 3.’ Does that give a clue as to its current owner?
Just hope we don’t have any more lockdown travel restrictions. You’re almost guaranteed to be tracked if you’re driving this. And don’t even think about emulating the infamous 2014 insurance scam when an owner drove his Veyron into a lake, claiming ‘to avoid a low flying pelican’, then tried to claim £1.6 million ($2.2 million, €1.8 million or درهم8.1 million). His antics were crisply caught on film by an admiring nearby driver and are well worth a watch.
The market at this ultimate top end has stayed unswervingly buoyant in these troubled times, so this Grand Sport looks an investment you can indulge your passion in for decades to come.
Graeme Hunt have the 2013 Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport listed at a price of £1.55 million ($2.14 million, €1.79 million or درهم7.88 million). They share that the cherished number plate ‘BIG 3’ “does not form part of the sale,” but add: “We do have ‘BUG 8’ on retention should anyone wish to discuss it.”