It appears that the prematurely leaked 5th installment of the Bugatti Legends Series was a clever distraction. Bugatti has revealed the 5th of 6 Legends cars and it is the Black Bess. Black Bess was every ounce a legend, driven by founder Ettore Bugatti himself in many races and ahead of her time in the specs arena.
About Black Bess
Black Bess was a Bugatti Type 18 from the pre-war era. She was among the first-ever street legal supercars with a rather impressive power arsenal for her time. Specifications for Bess included a 4-cylinder 5-liter producing 100 PS with a top speed of 100 miles per hour, not too shabby for the early 1900s.
Fun fact: The Bugatti Black Bess took home a victory in the 1912 Mont Ventoux Hill Climb, driven by Ettore himself.
Just seven examples of Black Bess were created and all were sold to special customers, the elite of the elite, so to speak. One buyer included French aviation pioneer Roland Garros. Garros noticed the supercar following Ettore’s victory at Mont Ventoux. Today, just 3 of the 7 cars still remain and one is in the Louwman Museum as part of a private collection. The special slice of Bugatti history was made available for the introduction of the Legends Series Black Bess, which is pretty cool. The Black Bess of today is, of course, a Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse and packs a touch more power than her predecessor, but boasts design cues to tie the sisters together and pay homage. Special features include: A black carbon fiber body with delicate gold stripes, gold coated components, and special “Black Bess” logos found in the usual places. The cockpit is truly luxurious, with fine leather and hand stitching with accents to tie the look together inside and out.
Overall, Black Bess is an impeccable edition to the Bugatti Legends Series fleet, though fans of Elizabeth Junek may be disappointed! It would be interesting to know where the rumor that the 5th car was to honor her actually originated.
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