Geneva Motor Show - Two years after the debut of the Chiron, Bugatti is presenting the Chiron Sport at Palexpo, with the same drivetrain but with improved handling and agility, thanks to a dynamic handling package and 18 kilograms of what Lotus founder Colin Chapman would have called added lightness.

Its engine is unchanged (four turbos, eight litres, 16 cylinders, 1103 kilowatts and 1600Nm are insane enough, thank you very much) as is the Chiron’s estimated top speed of 463km/h, but the steering is quicker and the adaptive suspension damping is 10 percent stiffer all round. These upgrades only apply when you’re in Handling mode; suspension and steering are as per the standard model when you’re in default EB mode.

The rear differential has been upgraded and the Chiron Sport has a dynamic torque vectoring function that distributes torque individually to the wheels on each side, to improve steering accuracy and agility in tight corners - whatever drive mode you’re in.

The weight savings are mostly due to new lightweight wheels (the best possible place to shave weight off a car), thinner glass in the rear window, a new, lighter exhaust deflector and increased use of carbon-fibre componentry, notably the stabiliser, intercooler cover, and the newly developed windscreen wipers with 3D printed aluminium tips - an industry first, according to Bugatti.

Chapman famously said: “If you make a car more powerful it will go faster on the straights - if you make it lighter it will go faster everywhere.” In the Chiron Sport, that translates to an impressive five seconds lopped off its lap time  around the Nardò handling circuit in the south of Italy.

The Sport is distinguished from the Chiron by its special ‘Course’ wheels, a new four-pipe exhaust deflector with round, rather than rectangular tailpipes, and inside by its black-anodised engine starter button and drive mode selector switch, the ‘Sport’ logo embossed on the door sill strips and embroidered ‘Chiron Sport’ logos on the seats.

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Colour and trim options

There’s also a package of colour and trim options for the Chiron Sport, all of which you’ll see on the show car in the pictures; the body has a classic two-tone colour scheme with red in front (the B-colour) and visible carbon-fibre (the A-colour) at the rear. B-colour options are red, blue, silver and dark grey

The distinctive side line, a C-shaped aluminium trim strip, is painted in the B-colour, as are the brake callipers, the EB logo on the hubcaps, the underside of the rear spoiler and the intercooler cover lettering. The B-colour is also used inside on the contrast stitching, seatbelts, the surround of the C-shaped light bar in the centre of the vehicle, the back of the rear-view mirror and the lining of the centre console stowage compartment.

You had to ask

The Bugatti Chiron Sport costs €2.65 million (R38.58 million) or €2.98 million (R43.39) including the optional colour and trim package, ex works. First deliveries to customers are planned for the end of 2018.

IOL Motoring