Presented by RM Sotheby’s.
In the late-1980s, supercar fans around the world were buoyed by the revival of Bugatti as a manufacturer of road cars. The celebrated marque had been dormant since 1952, yet Romano Artioli, Italian entrepreneur and Ferrari dealer, realized the value in revitalizing the company. He hoped to return Bugatti to its former glory by unveiling a new supercar that would bring the manufacturer into the modern age. Despite other revival and takeover attempts in the 1950s and 1960s, there had not been a new Bugatti for almost 40 years until the EB110 broke cover.
Immediately setting his sights on a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Campogalliano, Italy, Artioli founded Bugatti Automobili SpA in October 1987 and broke ground on the factory over the following year. Another year on, in 1989, and the entrepreneur’s dream had begun to be realized. Paolo Stanzani and Marcello Gandini, famous for their involvement with the design of the Lamborghini Miura and Countach, were brought on-board to help envisage the renewed brand’s first supercar. The new Bugatti was finally unveiled to the world on 15 September 1991 at the Palace of Versailles, in front of the Grande Arche de la Défense in Paris. In celebration of what would have been Ettore Bugatti’s 110th birthday that same day, the car was appropriately named the EB110.
The EB110 was designed around a 3.5-liter V-12 fitted with quad-turbochargers, immediately bringing the fight to rival supercar manufacturers such as Ferrari and Lamborghini. Assembled just a stone’s throw from Maranello, Bugatti’s flamboyant and powerful EB110 gave buyers another option over the contemporary F40 and Diablo. Attractive design by Giampaolo Benedini and Marcello Gandini ensured the supercar was easy on the eye, while the interior was awash with leather and wood trim, a subtle nod to the detail and luxury found in road cars of Bugatti’s past.
Setting his sights on even greater heights, Artiolo announced a more developed variant—the EB110 Super Sport—just six months after the launch of the landmark model. Announced at the 1992 Geneva International Motor Show, the new car’s 3.5-liter engine was refined to extract 603 horsepower, compared to the GT’s 550, thanks in part to a new ECU, larger injectors, and a less restrictive exhaust system. The new model also went on a crash diet, with selected aluminum panels replaced with carbon fiber. Thanks to these upgrades and modifications, the EB110 SS boasted a 0–60 mph time of just 3.2 seconds, with an incredible top speed of 216 mph.
Sadly, in the face of worldwide economic recession, Artioli’s dream began to crumble. Bugatti was forced to close its doors in Italy for good in 1995, and while limited production was continued by Jochen Dauer—who had bought the company’s remaining assets—just 139 would be built in total, including 30 production Super Sports. The company would later be revived once more, acquired by the Volkswagen Group in 1998, and going on to evolve into the hypercar powerhouse that we know today.
This EB110 SS was completed at the Campogalliano factory in Bianco Monaco over a dark blue leather interior with blue seatbelts, and was first registered for the road in April 1996. It is thought to have been delivered new to Monaco, where it remained until March 2012, when it was acquired by its current owner and entered The Gran Turismo Collection. The series of UK MoT certificates on file attest to occasional use over the years, with a slow rise in the odometer readings between tests. The Bugatti shows 24,467 kilometers on its dial at the time of cataloging, and the most recent MoT certificate was issued in September 2022. In the same month, Bugatti London carried out a medium EB110 service, re-gassed the air conditioning, and addressed other small faults in maintenance work totaling £8,108.
Representing a fascinating period of Bugatti history, the EB110 is a landmark model that bridges the gap between the Grand Prix racers of the pre-war period with the record-breaking Molsheim hypercars of today. In Super Sport guise, the EB110 is presented in its most pure, powerful, and collectible form, and would make a fine addition to any collection of serious supercars.
This vehicle is offered from The Gran Turismo Collection, featured in RM Sotheby’s forthcoming London sale on 5 November at Marlborough House. Learn more and register to bid online.