When the one-off, $12.5-million Bugatti La Voiture Noire debuted recently, you might have had some somber revelations—including, but not limited to, “When will Bugatti ever make a car for people like me?” and “As a kid, I always thought I’d be able to afford the supercars from my posters by now.”
But, never fear. All hope is not lost for your Bugatti dreams on a Jetta budget. In a Tesla Model 3-style “covering the spectrum” move (not really), Bugatti now has a car we slobbering commoners can afford—probably with a loan, but still: the Baby II, which makes a vicious 13 horsepower without a limiter and rings up at $33,700, before taxes and delivery, at current exchange rates.
“Isn’t the Baby II meant to be a toy for the rich and their children?” you might ask. Stop asking. Those are details. You take what you can get in this life, and in this case, it’s a small, highly impractical 13-HP Bugatti.
Bugatti announced the Baby II on Monday, and said ordering is open for the 500 models the company will make to celebrate its 110th anniversary. The Baby II is a modern version of the original Baby, which company founder Ettore Bugatti first made for his youngest son’s fourth birthday in 1926.
The Baby was a half-scale model of the Type 35 race car, and ended up going into production from 1927 to 1936, even though it was originally meant to be a one-off car. Only “around 500” ever made, according to Bugatti, hence the production cap on the new one.
Bugatti designed the Baby II based on a scan of a Type 35 built for the 1924 French Grand Prix, and it’s at a three-fourths scale instead of half so kids and adults can fit—letting “enthusiasts from across generations to share the love of driving and of the classic marque of Bugatti,” the automaker said, because the best way to bond with your kid is over your grossly expensive material objects.
The Baby II has a rear-wheel-drive, battery-electric powertrain, a limited-slip differential and regenerative braking, along with a few power settings: “child mode” limits it to 1.4 HP and a top speed of 12.4 mph, “adult mode” brings it up to 5.4 HP and 28 mph, and there’s also a “Speed Key” upgrade for a lightning-fast, singe-your-eyebrows setting of 13.4 HP and no speed limiter.
All of that pure, unfiltered power can be had along with a leather seat, a “scale recreation” of the four-spoke steering wheel from the Type 35 and eight-spoke wheels, headlights, a solid-silver Bugatti emblem, and, for people who order in 2019, a badge for the automaker’s 110th anniversary.
Sure, these 500 Baby II models will almost certainly all go to Bugatti collectors and their children, to park next to the other kid- and full-sized supercars in their three-floor garage, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is that, if only for a moment, us normal folk can realistically afford a Bugatti.