Words & photos - Daniel Bevis
Blah blah Veyron blah. The connoisseur's Bugatti is unquestionably the EB110 of the early 1990s. Named to celebrate what would have been Ettore Bugatti's 110th birthday - the 1991 launch date, by a clever bit of planning - this was an almost unbelievably ambitious supercar. The money poured into development was staggering, with a new factory built to produce the EB110 (architecturally intelligent, to maximise natural light and thus stimulate the thought processes of the people inside) while the machine itself was an exercise in bespoke engineering and unique detail. The carbon-fibre chassis was built by Aérospatiale, the French state-owned aerospace company, and the 3.5-litre V12 produced its howling peak of 560bhp thanks to no less than four turbos. This is a car that emerged almost a quarter of a century ago, yet happily boasts thoroughly modern performance figures: try 0-62mph in 4.2s and a top whack of 213mph for size.
In 1992, the EB110 Super Sport arrived. As well as being more powerful, the SS was lighter, shaving a whole second off the 0-62mph time and increasing top speed to 216mph. And it's that model that we're looking at here... kind of. But not really.
You see, this hugely expensive venture was rather less than a fairytale. Bugatti were struggling financially, and by 1995 they were facing bankruptcy - thanks in no small part to the development of the mooted EB112 four-door as well as an overly ambitious plan to buy Lotus. The remaining five half-finished EB110s were snapped up by Dauer Sportwagen (previously well known for their work with Porsche 962s among much else), and so the very latest EB110s were built by this world-class engineering and racing outfit rather than at the fabled Bugatti factory. Dauer EB110s weighed 1,480kg - a whopping 400kg less than Bugatti EB110s - and the engine was rated at a monstrous 865bhp. Top speed increased to 230mph.
Dauer themselves went bankrupt in 2008, and these later EBs are commanding astonishing figures now; the one you're looking at here was recently sold by Joe Macari for £795,000. Still, it's cheaper than a Veyron...
More photos from Joe Macari here.