The Bugatti V16 Engine Has A Metre-Long Crankshaft

Bugatti CEO Mate Rimac has divulged some fascinating details about Bugatti’s all-new engine
The Bugatti V16's crankshaft
The Bugatti V16's crankshaft

At the end of February, we saw (and heard) the engine that will power Bugatti’s next all-new model: a V16, paired with a hybrid setup of some sort. Now, thanks to Mate Rimac, CEO of the Bugatti Rimac joint venture, we’re able to glean a bit more information about the mighty new engine, including that its crankshaft is a metre long.

The information came on Rimac’s social media channels, where he shared some behind-the-scenes images of the engine’s development. Turns out that two parallel banks of eight cylinders need a seriously long crankshaft to move them – who’d have thunk it. Rimac also gave us a look at the engine’s 16 pistons, deconstructed and laid out next to one another.

Bugatti’s first hybrid, it’s basically a foregone conclusion that the electric element will be developed by Rimac, but right now, the core drivetrain configuration is about all the info we have on the car. Whether it’ll be another mid-engined super-coupe in the image of Veyron and Chiron, or if it’ll take another form, remains to be seen. We don’t even have any idea what it’ll be called, but we’ll find out when it gets a full reveal in June.

Things like power, engine capacity and performance are equally up in the air, but we do know what the engine looks like, and what it sounds like. What it looks like is, quite frankly, a piece of sculpture; all carbon fibre, beautifully curving pipework and intricately crafted cam covers.

What it sounds like is… something different to any Bugatti that’s come before it. It sounds rawer, more aggressive, more eager to rev – perhaps even naturally aspirated? This could suggest a new approach for Bugatti, something different to the goal of outright velocity that it’s tended to pursue in the past.

It joins a tiny handful of V16-powered road cars, the last of which was 1991’s vanishingly rare Cizeta-Moroder V16T. Now, finally, this fleetingly rare engine layout is making a comeback. We can’t wait to see the sort of machine it’s powering.


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