Eldest son of Ettore Bugatti, Jean Bugatti born as Gianoberto Maria Carlo Bugatti was an innately talented test engineer and automotive designer whose body designs complemented his father’s engineering skills, making Bugatti one of the greatest names in automobile manufacturing. Bugatti’s iconic models T50, T55 and the world acclaimed T57 also bears Jean Bugatti’s unique signature. He designed not only exceptional chassis, but also singularly powerful engines. One of his famed works, the 1939 Bugatti Type 64 Coupe Chassis #64002, which was left unfinished due to his tragic death in a road test crash in 1939, will now wear a streamlined, handcrafted body, after 73 years. As the Mullin Automotive Museum has announced that the virtually completed coachbuild of legendary Jean Bugatti’s famed chassis #64002 will make its first public appearance at Quail motorsports on August 17, at Quali Lodge in Carmel, California, just before the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.
Historically, chassis #64002 never got finished due to the tragic death of Jean when he lost control of his Bugatti Type 57 during the road test and crashed into a tree while trying to avoid a drunken bicyclist, who had gotten onto the track through a hole in a treefence.
Created in collaboration with the Mullin Automotive Museum, Stewart Reed Design and Automobile Metal Shaping Company, the new body will pay due homage to Jean Bugatti’s original concept. Crafted using many of the same coachbuilding techniques which were employed in 1939, the hand-formed body will feature numerous original styling cues, which includes iconic Papillion doors and an intricate riveted body structure.
The Mullin Automotive Museum is known to be a Southern California institution which focuses on the preservation of French art and automobiles from the Art Deco era. The museum has earlier purchased the 1936 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic from Dr. Peter Williamson, for a price somewhere between $30 million to $40 million, making it the world's most expensive car back in 2010. Interestingly, only two of these cars exist today, one on display at the Mullin Museum and the other is in Ralph Lauren's car collection.
Talking about rare Bugatti's, we have earlier told you about the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport ‘Sang Noir’, which is also known as the world’s most expensive new car, besides Prince Louis Napoleon's 1938 Bugatti Type 57C Stelvio, dubbed as the most desirable collectors car for sale at the upcoming Pebble Beach Auctions 2012, the 1925 Bugatti Type 35B which is deemed to be most beautiful racing car. Two Bugatti models have earlier made it to our list of world's most expensive cars.