His­tory boys

The whole of Route 66. In a Vey­ron Is­sue 259 – this month in 2014

Top Gear (Malaysia) - - Contents -

Hey, we like to say good­bye in style. So to send the Vey­ron off prop­erly as it reached the end of its decade-long pro­duc­tion run, we con­vinced Bu­gatti to let us drive one the length of Route 66. Chicago to Los An­ge­les, 2,404 miles (3,869km) along the most sto­ried road of them all.

Ob­vi­ously we went for the faster Vey­ron: the two-mil­lion-quid Vey­ron Grand Sport Vitesse, one of few con­vert­ibles in his­tory good for a 10-sec­ond stand­ing quar­ter, and a 418kph top speed.

Against long odds, we es­caped any speed­ing tick­ets. How­ever, we did suf­fer ap­palling sun­stroke, be­ing licked by a don­key, and get­ting lightly threat­ened by a gang of bik­ers. Stan­dard US roadtrip fare.

It was, for the most part, an ex­er­cise in self-re­straint. There’s a gauge on the Vey­ron’s dash, telling you ex­actly how many of the W16’s 1,200 horses you’re de­ploy­ing. Most of the time, we barely tick­led 50.

But there was the odd chance to open it up. And when you open the Vey­ron up, boy, does it kick. It is thrust at its most pri­mal, speed al­most be­yond com­pre­hen­sion. Once you’ve felt full throt­tle in a Vey­ron, noth­ing ever seems quite the same again.

But, even more than the brain-fry­ing Bug, the real hero was Route 66 it­self. Still os­si­fied in its Six­ties prime, it re­mains the orig­i­nal roadtrip road, a time­cap­sule metaphor for the free­dom of Amer­ica’s west. The free­dom of the au­to­mo­bile.

The great­est road, the great­est car. We’ve had worse trips.

This year, the world’s great­est car mag­a­zine cel­e­brates its 25th an­niver­sary

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