In 2019, Bugatti is celebrating its 110th anniversary. The French automobile marque, which was founded by Ettore Bugatti in 1909 in Alsace and has a rich and colourful history, is distinguished by its innovative designs and engineering. This summer, the Cité de l’Automobile in Mulhouse is paying a fitting tribute to the extraordinary creativity of the Bugatti family and the exceptional driving dynamics of the cars bearing this nam
The exhibition is presenting contemporary supercars and vintage racing cars, attesting to Bugatti’s glorious past and bold and innovative future. Unique objects, rare archive material, and exceptional vehicles provide an overview of the influences and the personal relationships between the members of the Bugatti family, and the successive players in the Bugatti saga, in order to shed light on the unique identity of the most amazing cars in the history of the automobile, from the legendary ‘Royale’ to the new Bugatti Divo.
The Cité de l’Automobile, which houses the largest Bugatti collection in the world, is paying tribute to the French automobile marque by exceptionally opening its doors to recent and contemporary cars produced in the factory at Molsheim, including the Bugatti Divo, and also the Veyron, Galibier, Chiron, and EB 110 models, in order to allow free dialogue between them and the major pieces in the museum’s collection, such as a Bugatti ‘Royale’ coupé Napoléon, a rare Bugatti Type 57 S ‘Atalante’, a Type 32 ‘Tank’, a Type 51 Grand Prix, and the very rare Type 251 racing car.
The cars are presented in chronological order, highlighting the thinking and work of five figures in the history of the French automobile marque: Ettore Bugatti, the founder, who inherited the artistic abilities of his father, Carlo Bugatti, and who benefitted from the creativity of his brother, the sculptor Rembrandt Bugatti. And then, Jean Bugatti, Ettore Bugatti’s eldest son, who would also have been 110 years old this year. His personality, audacity, and futuristic vision became an integral part of the Bugatti identity. Under his management Bugatti produced high-performance cars that were innovative in design and appearance, until his sudden death, shortly before the Second World War. Roland Bugatti took over the reins in the 1950s, not without panache. It was not until 1991 that Bugatti was revived, thanks to the creative passion of the Italian entrepreneur Romano Artioli. Since 1998, Bugatti has regained its well-deserved status as one of the world’s leading names in the automobile industry, thanks in particular to the visionary approach of Ferdinand Piëch. The exhibition adopts a transversal approach to these five periods.
The exhibition, whose general curatorship has been entrusted to the curator of the Musée de l’Automobile, Richard Keller, takes visitors into the heart of the marque and its designers by showcasing their talent and unrivalled designs.
Curatorship: Richard Keller, general curator, and Frédéric Brun, associate curator