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4 de julho de 2021

Bugatti, History and Renaissance - Part 9: The Type 43


Antonio Eiras

In series models designed solely for road, Ettore would remain faithful to the 8-cylinder engine that equipped the Type 30. And if this model was a technical and commercial success, the same would not happen to its successor, the Type 38.


Indeed, the 75hp of its 2-litre engine would prove meager for the Type 38 weight, whose chassis, longer and heavier than that of its predecessor, was equipped with an elegant but also heavier bodywork.


The Type 38A, powered with the same engine with a compressor and delivering around 95hp, had an improved dynamic behavior, but this would definitely not be one of Bugatti's best models. Despite this, between 1926 and 1927, around 380 types of Types 38 and 38A were built.


In 1926, sporting and commercial success allowed Ettore to complete the renovation of its brand's touring model range. To do so, it was necessary to replace the “Modified Brescia” or Types 22 and 23.


Using the Type 38 chassis, whose wheelbase would be shortened, and the much-praised 60hp Type 37 engine, Ettore created the Type 40. For this new model, his son Jean Bugatti designed a very beautiful torpedo-type bodywork “Grand Sport”, with only one door on the left side.


This model, offered at a relatively affordable price, proved to be simultaneously nervous, but comfortable and easy to drive, having been considered, according to the press at the time, ideal for doing long journeys.


In 1930, the Type 40A was introduced, which used the Type 49's 1,600cc engine with two spark plugs per cylinder and had a two-seater body, designed by Jean Bugatti, in the 1920s American style.


Production of the Types 40 and 40A ended in 1932, with around 800 cars of these models having left the factory, a considerable number for the time.


In 1927, a new model was introduced, aimed at a wealthy clientele who were looking for strong emotions. The Type 43 was derived from the 35B, having inherited from it the 2.3 liter compressor-powered engine, which delivered around 120hp, and the alloy wheels. Its price was even higher than the Grand Prix model!


Its ambivalent character allowed for a smooth and comfortable use, whether in town or on long journeys and at high speeds.


The Type 43 reached 170km/h, having even been entered in the Tourist Trophy of 1928 and 29. Its sporting career was, however, limited by its high weight.


The low reliability of its engine, which required a long standstill heating and frequent overhauls, would be its biggest flaw.


In 1930, in its last year of production, the Type 43A was introduced, which was equipped with an American-inspired two-seater bodywork, which was heavier and with lower performance, but which allowed its production to be extended.


About 160 cars of the Type 43 were built, which would be rated as one of the most appreciated by the brand's enthusiasts.

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