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The Exotic Bugatti Cars

Updated on June 6, 2013
Type 57C
Type 57C
The Mona Lisa 57SC
The Mona Lisa 57SC
New (left) and old (right) Bugatti cars.
New (left) and old (right) Bugatti cars.
The Type 41
The Type 41
The last one- Type 73. Compared to earlier models, it was uninspired.
The last one- Type 73. Compared to earlier models, it was uninspired.

Very few of the cars mentioned in this hub exist. They are the Bugatti Mona Lisa Type 57SC, the Type 41 Royale and the most stunning of all, the 1939 Type 57C VanVooren.

All of these cars are art deco cars and sensuous in steel. They are metal sculptures with a function. In 1941, the former king of Iran, Mohammad Pahlavi, took over the throne from his father. At the time, Iran was very pro-West and as a gift from France, the Bugatti 57C VanVooren, was sent to him. This is twin passenger cabriolet with a very short windscreen which could be wound down into the body and a disappearing top which was concealed by a panel behind the interior. It engine was a whopping 175 hp.

The beauty is in the sleek flowing lines of the metal. It is art on wheels. yet, when the US Embassy was taken over in 1979, the now much older Shah's car was seized also. The Ayatullahs nearly scraped the car and it was nearly turned into scrap. Wanting money more than car destruction, Iran sold the car on the cheap to an American (American cars are still valued in Iran) who restored it in England. The car is now worth nearly $2,000,000. It has a top speed of 95 mph and is 3600 lbs.

Another very rare (only a few exist) Bugatti is the Mona Lisa 57SC. Like most Bugatti's of this era, it is art. Its body is made of Electron, an alloy of magnesium and aluminum. Although it is strong and much lighter than aluminum, it is highly flammable. Do not light up a cigarette around it! I said only a few existed, I meant two. The car is a fastback with perfect form and recently sold for $30,000,000. Its owner bought it in 1971 for $59,000. The car was one of the early supercharged variants.With its low stance, 200 bhp engine, lightweight construction, 123 mph (200 kph) top speed, it was a unique.

The Bugatti 41 Royale was 21 feet long and weighed 7000 lbs.Only six were made and only three actually sold. The engine was also huge (4 feet long) producing 300 hp with eight cylinders. The cars were built between 1929-33. These cars represented the luxury class and only for the rich and famous.

The Bugatti name is famous for its racing cars of the 20's and 30's, and yet, by 1952, there was no more them. Both the Bugatti son and father had died by then and there was no one else to carry on the name or design them. The last Bugatti car was the Type 73, one was for racing and one for the consumer. It was a four-cylinder, twin overhead camshaft, four valves per cylinder car, unique for its time. It recently sold for $100,000. One would think the sell price would have been in the millions since only five were built,

In the late 80's, an Italian firm bought the name to produce sport cars, it is now owned by Volkswagen.


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