Bugatti’s first electric vehicle is not a Tesla rival or futuristic hypercar, but an e-scooter with a top speed of 18mph
The name Bugatti is synonymous with speed, with its fastest model of all time – the Chiron Super Sport 300+ – one of the quickest production cars you can buy for the road with a top speed of 304mph.
So when the French manufacturer unveiled its first electric vehicle earlier this month, you might have expected it to be a zero-emission supercar with enough performance to leave a Tesla Model S in its dust.
But the first EV Bugatti has put its name to is something very different indeed; it has teamed up with an American company to release an e-scooter with a top speed of 18mph.
Not the electric Bugatti you might have expected: This is the first zero-emission vehicle with a Bugatti badge – a lightweight e-scooter with an 18mph top speed
The new e-scooter is far from the brand’s iconic Chiron hypercar (right). It has a range of up to 22 miles from a 700-watt electric motor. That compares to the car’s 1,500bhp 8-litre, W16, petrol engine
The 113-year-old motor firm is best known for its seven-figure models the Veyron and £2.5million Chiron as well as its production car speed records over the last two decades.
There has been much speculation about an electrified hypercar coming soon, especially since the company last year partnered with Croatian EV supercar specialist Rimac to form a new company called ‘Bugatti Rimac’, led by entrepreneur Mate Rimac as Chief Executive Officer.
However, the first zero-emission vehicle it will bring to market is this scooter, which is being developed and produced by New York-based Bytech International.
The e-scooter is powered by a 700-watt electric motor, with power drawn from a 36-volt battery that allows for a range of around 22 miles.
Like a supercar, it has adaptable modes.
An economy speed setting restricts top speed to 9mph to extend the battery range, while city ramps it up to 12.5mph and sport will allow users to go flat-out at 18.5mph – though the latter will drain the battery significantly if used for prolonged periods.
The e-scooter can take a weight of 110kg, which is 26kg more than the average UK male’s weight.
Bugatti’s fastest car is the Chiron Super Sport 300+, which has an official top speed of 304mph
While the Chiron hasn’t held the fastest production car crown, the Veyron did for a combined 9 years
The first zero-emission Bugatti is being developed and produced by New York-based Bytech International
There has been much speculation about an electrified hypercar to follow in their tracks, especially since the French company last year partnered with Croatian EV supercar specialist Rimac to form a new company called ‘Bugatti Rimac’
One handy feature of the Bugatti-branded e-scooter is the battery pack, which can be removed so users can charge it in their homes. Bytech says it takes around four hours to complete a full charge using a US domestic socket.
While it isn’t wrapped in carbon fibre, active spoilers and speed-bump-scraping front splitters, Bugatti’s debut EV does have a lightweight construction – by e-scooter standards.
It has a magnesium-alloy frame that weighs 16kg and is even equipped with a large LED display showing speed, mode setting, battery range and also operates the front and rear lights.
There is also an additional Bugatti ‘EB’ emblem that projects onto the tarmac and lights running along the side footplate for improved visibility while riding at night.
The e-scooter is fitted with headlights, a brake light, LEDs illuminating the footplate and even an ‘EB’ Bugatti emblem that’s projected onto the tarmac
Pricing for the Bugatti e-scooter has yet to be revealed and it looks set to only be available in North America
Bytech says it takes around four hours to complete a full charge using a US domestic socket
Dual-turn signal controls on the handlebars are linked to indicators located on the handle grips and rear mudguard.
It also handily has run-flat tyres wrapped around 9-inch wheels and even has anti-lock brakes front and back.
Wiebke Stahl, Bugatti managing director, said: ‘Partnering with a company such as Bytech gives us an opportunity to expand our reach in the electric mobility space with an experienced partner and a product that can be enjoyed by consumers around the world.’
Pricing for the Bugatti e-scooter has yet to be revealed and it looks set to only be available in North America.
With private e-scooters still illegal in the UK, it is unlikely that the Bugatti Bytech will be sold in Britain.
Bugatti isn’t the first supercar brand to venture into the e-mobility world: Lamborghini has its AL1 e-scooter, which costs around £530 in the UK, and Ferrari last year launched a branded model costing a massive $2,500.