The Bugatti Sedan You Probably Forgot Exists Turns 30 – It's Not the Galibier

Bugatti is a hypercar maker, therefore their lineup comprises several models only, all of which were based on the Chiron in these modern times. But there was a time when the Molsheim-based company used to experiment with different body styles, and the EB112 was born back then.
Bugatti EB112 9 photos
Photo: Bugatti
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Arguably less known than the 2009 Galibier, the Bugatti EB112 was presented at the 1993 Geneva Motor Show, with a four-door body style and a sloping roofline towards the rear. It had large side windows, a split rear windscreen, curvaceous front and rear fenders, headlamps that inspired those of the Veyron, and the horseshoe grille to tell everyone they're looking at a Bugatti – though it kind of seems to have had a big influence on the Porsche Panamera, doesn't it?

Speaking about the styling, Bugatti's Specialist Heritage and Certification, Luigi Galli, said: "Here was a car, in 1993, that created a completely new segment for Berline Coupe cars; before it, there really was no high-performance sedan that took on the attributes the EB112 delivered, forming visionary design with outstanding power and luxury in abundance." Giugiaro added that "in many respects," the EB112 was "a dream car and a forerunner to what we today know as high-performance fastback models."

It may not win any beauty contests, but the EB112 bears the signature of Giorgetto Giugiaro. For inspiration, the famous car designer looked at Bugattis of the past, like the Type 57 SC Atlantic, when it comes to the dissecting rear window. The EB112 has a carbon fiber monocoque that was derived from that of the EB110 and an all-aluminum body. This technology was considered groundbreaking in the segment thirty years ago, especially when it came to sedans.

You know how the Veyron, Chiron, and other (relatively) modern Bugattis use a quad-turbocharged 8.0-liter W16 for power? Well, the EB112 came with something different: a Volkswagen-designed 6.0-liter V12 paired with a six-speed manual transmission and all-wheel drive. The naturally aspirated engine kicked out 460 ps (454 hp/338 kW) at 6,300 rpm and had a peak torque of 590 Nm (435 lb-ft) from 3,000 rpm. That's certainly far from impressive today, but don't forget the EB112 came out in 1993. Bugatti quoted the 0 to 100 kph (0 to 62 mph) sprint as taking 4.3 seconds, and a top speed of 300 kph or 186 mph was possible.

The era of big engines is slowly coming to a halt at Bugatti, as the brand's future is inevitably electric under the guidance of Mate Rimac. Nonetheless, the automaker believes several models from its past will continue to inspire the design of future vehicles, and the EB112 is but one. So, is it "the world's most beautiful saloon car ever created," according to the "many critics" quoted by Bugatti?
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About the author: Cristian Gnaticov
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After a series of unfortunate events put an end to Cristian's dream of entering a custom built & tuned old-school Dacia into a rally competition, he moved on to drive press cars and write for a living. He's worked for several automotive online journals and now he's back at autoevolution after his first tour in the mid-2000s.
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