Want to know what my favourite Bugatti is? It’s not the Chiron, nor is it the Veyron. Nope, it’s the EB110.
It comes from a curious - not to mention brief - time in the brand’s history. It had been purchased by an Italian entrepreneur, and after setting up shop near Modena, the re-born Bugatti outfit starting building a 3.5-litre V12 supercar. It was christened ‘EB110’ to mark the 110th anniversary of Ettore Bugatti, and that V12 had four turbochargers.
Having lasted only a few years and produced just 139 EB110s, the Italian iteration of Bugatti went bust in 1995 - there wasn’t another Bugatti-badged road car until the Veyron arrived 10 years on, produced under VW ownership.
So, it wasn’t the most successful 90s supercar, but it’s still one that we have strong feelings of want for. It has bedroom poster-friendly looks, scissor doors, and performance that’s still impressive today. How does 542bhp and a top speed of 213mph sound to you?
Why is all this relevant now? Because one of the 139 is about to be auctioned, that’s why. But not just any EB110 - this one’s done just 4540 kilometres (nearly 3000 miles). It’s a 1993 model, but the car sat in the dealership until 1995 until a chap called August Nüechter bought it.
Nüechter later drove it from his home to the Bugatti factory some 460 or so miles away for its first service, not knowing about the firm’s precarious financial situation. He’s said to have arrived at the factory on the day Bugatti declared bankruptcy, greeted by a bunch of miffed, freshly laid-off workers outside the facility.
The car was barely used over the years, not helped by Nüechter moving to the United States in the late 1990s. He did have the EB110 shipped over, though, which was finally given approval for road use in August 2005.
It’s due to be auctioned at RM Sotheby’s 18 - 19 January Arizona event, and as you’d expect, it’s not going to be cheap: the estimate is $750,000 - $950,000.