As we mentioned last week, Bugatti’s relationship with the Volkswagen Group will be under review next month at the brand’s group strategy meeting. Amidst this uncertainty, it has been revealed that the French-born brand’s plan to develop a second model has been put on hold.
Talking to Bloomberg, Bugatti chief Stephan Winkelmann revealed that this decision to evaluate Bugatti and Volkswagen’s partnership was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic’s damage to the car industry. Despite this, he is confident that the hypercar brand will generate record revenue this year.
“We had talks about a second-model line-up,” Winkelmann said. “This was now blocked due to the coronavirus crisis; we’re not talking about what’s coming next.”
It’s apparent that traditional supercar buyers have been less exposed to the economic impact of the pandemic however, niche manufacturers which favour internal combustion engines are under heavy scrutiny from emission regulations in key markets. Furthermore, the economic downturn has made it a challenge for manufacturers to justify spending resources on cars that can clear 400 km/h.
Bugatti has experienced a notable amount of success this year. In fact, based on its current order book, it may be the best year ever in terms of sales. Winkelmann has also confirmed that between 70-80 per cent of next year’s units have already been sold.
Regardless, the brand’s future is uncertain amidst the rumoured change of ownership. Recently, a rumour surfaced that Croation EV hypercar maker Rimac, of which Porsche owns a 15,5 per cent stake, would take over operations. Winkelmann declined to comment on this.