Mate Rimac Stopped Bugatti From Building an Electric Crossover

Mate Rimac talks about the company’s future, including the next Bugatti hypercar being a hybrid.

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Bugatti W16 Mistral
Image: Bugatti Autombiles

Bugatti Rimac is still a young company. It formed just 13 months ago when Porsche agreed to give Rimac a stake in the storied hypercar maker in exchange for a stake in Rimac business. Now a little over a year after the merger, the company has big plans. And in some cases, as Auto Express (via MotorAuthority) reports, that partnership has involved some things getting shot down.

Speaking to Auto Express, Bugatti Rimac’s CEO (and Rimac founder) Mate Rimac talked about how he wants the company to do amazing stuff. Like the successor to the Chiron which Rimac calls “bonkers.” While Rimac said that his company started developing a new engine not long after talks of his company taking control of Bugatti began, the Chiron successor will be special; a new hybrid hypercar.

“It will be hypercar rearranged as a hybrid. It’s completely new, so there is not one part carried over from any car; nothing carried over from Chiron, nothing carried over from Nevera. Everything is from scratch,” he said to Auto Express.

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Rimac also asked about developing larger cars, something that can fit more than two people. While he didn’t rule it out, he did speak to something with the performance of a hypercar while having four seats being difficult to make.

I think it’s a really interesting concept where you have basically a hypercar with four usable seats – I really like the Koenigsegg Gemera, for example – but this kind of car comes with a lot of complexities and limitations.” Adding more seats compicates things. Basically, when you do a car like that, if it’s low, the problem is with four seats you usually have very upright seating when you put people one behind the other. And then sports cars have long bonnets or rears for the engine or battery so the car becomes impossibly long. Then you have to go kind of SUV-ish for the roof height and to get the proportions, which ruins the centre of gravity. That’s the real kind of challenge with this kind of car.”

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While recent years have seen even Ferrari and Aston Martin get in on the SUV game, don’t expect Rimac to. When asked about whether or not the company will make a hyper SUV, he shot it down, just like he shot down the idea of a Bugatti SUV, he admitted.

When I ask about an SUV Rimac stops me in my tracks. “No. Let’s say we don’t have a plan for a car like that. It was something we immediately stopped for Bugatti and we will go in a slightly different direction. That is a direction we will never take.”

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It’s good to see that not everyone thinks SUVs are the answer to everything.