If it\’s got an engine. . .

Dorri probably likes it

Bugatti Veyron not what it claims?

Posted by ifitsgotanengine on September 22, 2005

252 miles per hour.

That’s the claimed top speed of the quad-turbocharged Bugatti Veyron.

The good people at Auto Express disagree. They tested the car and were only able to get it to 220 mph. They were told the car was unable to reach top speed due to the elevation at which they were testing.

Allow me to explain why this cannot be the case. First, a little history.

Airplanes have long had to deal with large variations in air density due to altitude changes. Most light planes have a mixture knob to lean out the fuel mixture as altitude is increased. Otherwise the carburetors would be delivering too much fuel for the available air, resulting in poor running or fouling of spark plugs. Even when the mixture is properly adjusted, the power level is down at higher altitudes.

The turbocharger changed all that. It works by using the engine’s exhaust to turn a turbine connected to a compressor. This compressor forces air into the engine at whatever pressure it is designed for. For the first time, airplane engines could make as much power at 10,000 feet as at sea level.

This works on land as well. The Veyron has four turbochargers. Bugatti’s claim that the Veyron couldn’t reach it’s claimed 252mph top speed due to being at an elevation of 3300 feet is clearly false. In fact, the lowered wind resistance at higher elevations should make the car faster, not slower.


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