French supercar manufacturer, Bugatti, has confirmed a long-standing rumour that the company has been working on a new hybrid vehicle.
In a lengthy interview with German newspaper Die Bild, Martin Winterkorn the chairman of Bugatti’s parent company, Volkswagen AG, confirmed that an update to the Bugatti Veyron will be revealed in 2016.
This new vehicle will reportedly come in two versions; one running a traditional drive train similar to that found on earlier models, while the other will run a new hybrid-electric drive.
“Next to the petrol model there will be a hybrid version with added performance for the first time,” explained Winterkorn in the Bild interview.
The new vehicle will feature an engine which can deliver close to 1500hp and achieve top speeds of 286mph (460km/h). It is unknown yet whether these specifications refer to either the petrol model, the hybrid model, or both.
In order to build such a powerful and fast car, Bugatti is using advanced materials in the manufacturing of the Veyron update. Among the more important of these is a carbon fibre chassis with seating for two, enabling the car to maintain strength despite a reduction in weight.
The car is undergoing conceptual engineering tests, with up to five different designs being currently tested by Bugatti, according to reporting by Autocar.
While the vehicle is to be revealed in 2016, the first 450 deliveries of the vehicle will not begin until 2017. As well, the company is remaining tight-lipped on what the new car’s final price tag will be.
Hybrid supercars gaining prominence
While hybrid electric vehicles have long been associated with fuel economy and reliability, the same technology is gaining recognition with supercar manufacturers.
Through the use of hybrid engines, these supercars can achieve even higher acceleration and top speeds than that of traditional engines. Furthermore, they can reduce the notoriously large amount of fuel which these vehicles use when accelerating and travelling at their top speeds.