Bespoke car-maker Bugatti has made a return to the electric car market after 89-year hiatus with the launch of a 75 per cent scale ‘toy’ replica of its famous Type 35 racer.
The not-quite-full-size modern incarnation of the Type 35, which won the 1926 Grand Prix World Championship, is not intended as a road-going vehicle, despite a price tag reaching up to €58,500 (£53,000).
The toy that costs more than a full-size Nissan Leaf, Europe’s most popular all-electric car, is a very on-brand move for Bugatti, which often flogs cars for north of £1million.
The comparatively cheap ‘Baby II’ is aimed at either gadget-loving millionaires or the children of the world’s wealthiest individuals.
The Baby II is a rekindling of the original Baby, which was made by the German company’s founder Ettore Bugatti in 1926 for his four-year-old son, Roland.
The original Baby was a half-scale replica of the Type 35 and a total of 500 were sold between 1927 and 1936.
The last time Bugatti made an electric car was when it produced the Type 56, a now uber-rare model which was last manufactured in 1931.
There are three specification levels for the overpriced toy, with the cheapest, dubbed ‘Base’, coming with a 1.4Kwh battery pack.
This has two settings — Novice or Expert— which a parent can enforce depending on the driving capabilities of the youngster behind the wheel.
In Expert mode, the battery pack’s full might is unleashed and 5.4-horsepower propels the car to 30mph.
In Novice mode, this is throttled back to a maximum of 1.3 horsepower, resulting in a tepid top speed of 12mph.
This model has a maximum range of around 15 miles and only comes in the classic blue.
However, the upgraded version, the Vitesse, comes in a variety of colours for both the exterior paint and the interior’s upholstery.
The Vitesse has a 13.4 horsepower electric motor and a 2.8kWh battery pack allowing for a top speed of up to 42mph and a range of 31 miles.
Those wanting the top-of-the-range ‘Pur Sang’ model will have to shell out €58,500 (£53,000) to the Volkswagen-owned French firm.
For this hefty price tag, the Baby II comes with a hand-formed body, Bugatti says.
Much like the original Baby a century ago, only 500 of the vehicles will be made, and most are already accounted for.