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Bugatti Baby returns as an electrified ‘unruly teenager’

The Bugatti Baby II continues the lineage of the original Baby from nearly 100 years ago.

Photo courtesy of Bugatti

This year, Bugatti celebrates its 110th birthday. In honor of the occasion, the company is giving itself a present. Meet the Bugatti Baby II, a “reimagining" of the original Bugatti Baby, which was born 94 years ago.

The 1926 version came to be after Ettore Bugatti and his son, Jean, decided to build a scaled-down version of the company's Type 35 car for Ettore's youngest son Roland's fourth birthday. What they ended up with was a 50 percent scale version of the car.

According to Bugatti history, “Ettore and Jean had intended the present as a one-off car, however the feedback from customers visiting Molsheim was so positive that the Baby went into production and was sold between 1927 and 1936."

Bugatti Baby II

Photo courtesy of Bugatti

The size of the Bugatti Baby would barely fit the average eight year old today. So, in making the Bugatti II, The automaker decided to up the ante, designing a 75 percent scale model that is designed to fit the modern 14 year old.

"Ettore Bugatti himself was already interested in catering to the children of Bugatti enthusiasts and designed the Type 52 miniature car as a genuine Bugatti. That was a sensation at the time," says Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti. "We are continuing this tradition with the new edition of the Bugatti Baby II, and I am delighted that we have found The Little Car Company, a partner that shares the same values as us. With the Bugatti Baby II, we invite a young generation of enthusiasts to fall in love with the wonderful world of Bugatti."

The electric car is sold in three models: Base, Vitesse, and Pur Sang. The Baby II Base has a composite body and is a powered by a 1.4 kilowatt-hour battery pack. The mid-grade Vitesse features a carbon fiber body and 2.8 kilo-watt-hour battery back as well as a Speed Key in a similar fashion as the Chiron1.

The Baby II Pur Sang is the ultimate expression of opulence. It has the same 2.8 kilowatt-hour battery pack as the Vitesse model but is enhanced by featuring aluminum bodywork. It is crafted using the same coachbuilding techniques as the original Bugatti Type 35, taking over 200 hours to create.

Bugatti designed the model by 3D scanning the originals Type 35 and giving the Baby II identical geometry and suspension. Bugatti says that the only “nod to modernity is the introduction of adjustable campers". Bugatti Test Pilot, Andy Wallace, was even involved in the final development of the tuning and setup of the Baby II.

The cockpit features replicas of the original Baby's gauges with slight modification on its turned aluminum dashboard - the fuel pressure gauge has now become a battery gauge. The four-spoke steering wheel now has a quick release feature. Adjustable machined aluminum pedals have the famous “EB" logo. The fuel pump handle has also been reproduced, but now serves as a s shifter with forward, neutral, and reverse options.

Developed in partnership with The Little Car Company, those that have driven the Baby II describe it as "more of an unruly teenager than a Baby." It features a limited slip differential, high performance hydraulic brakes, Michelin tires, and selectable driving modes. The Base model comes with two modes; Novice which is limited to 20 kph (12 mph) and one kilowatt (1.3 bhp) of power, and Expert which is limited to 45 kph (30 mph) and 4 kilowatts (5.4 bhp) of power.

The Vitesse and Pur Sang versions add Novice and Expert driving modes, allowing drivers to use up to up to 10 kilowatts (13.4 bhp). Those two models are able to reach up to 42 mph. Depending on the weight of the driver, that speed can be hit in as little as six seconds.

The Baby II Base can get 25 km of range out of a single charge. Mid-grade and top-tier models have more than 50 km of range, though that range is diminished if drivers go hard on the throttle. A replacement lithium-ion battery is available and able to be swapped with the original in just a few minutes.

Buyers can customize their model's exterior and interior in the same solid shades as the Chiron.

In addition, all owners of Baby IIs will receive membership of The Little Car Club and the Bugatti Owners' Club, and be able to attend events where they, their children and grandchildren can drive their cars at famous motor racing circuits.

The Base model starts at €30,000, the Vitesse at €43,500 and the Pur Sang starts at €58,500.

Bugatti is making just 500 examples of the Baby II. Though most slots are filled, a few still remain open. Visit bugattibaby.com today to reserve yours.

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The iX M60 will hit dealers' lots in June 2022.

BMW

BMW's electric vehicle catalog is growing rapidly as the automaker rolls out new electrified cars and SUVs. The latest is the iX M60, a red-hot five-seat SUV with sleek styling and a spectacular list of standard features. BMW announced the new SUV this week, along with pricing and release date details.

The iX M60 is BMW's first performance-oriented electric SUV, though BMW calls it a sports activity vehicle, or SAV. Its powertrain has been massaged to produce up to 610 horsepower and 811 pound-feet of torque. Maximum power delivery is limited to times when the vehicle's launch control is activated, but even the "normal" numbers are impressive: In regular driving situations, the iX puts down 532 horsepower and 749 pound-feet of torque. Acceleration to 60 mph takes 3.6 seconds and the iX M60 can go on to an electronically-limited top speed of 155 mph.

2023 BMW iX M60 Though extremely sporty, BMW doesn't shy away from using loads of luxurious finishes and materials. BMW

The iX brings more than performance, as its charging capabilities are quite strong. Using AC power, the vehicle can charge from 0-100 percent in 10.25 hours on its fastest setting. Using its fastest DC power setting, the iX can charge from 10 to 80% in just 35 minutes.

Two electric motors power the SUV, which provide standard all-wheel drive. Dual-axle air suspension is standard, along with electronically-controlled shock absorbers. BMW says that the air suspension is controlled individually at each wheel, so the vehicle can adjust ride height in several ways to maintain stability and remain level in corners.

2023 BMW iX M60 The vehicle can run from 0-60 mph in under four seconds and features standard AWD.BMW

When it goes on sale in June, 2022, the 2023 BMW iX M60 will have a starting price of $106,095, which includes a $995 destination charge. That's a flagship price tag, but the SUV's got the performance and a flagship-level list of standard features. That six-figure dollar amount buys 21-inch wheels, heated and ventilated front seats, wireless phone charging, AC fast charging, a panoramic sunroof, LED headlights, a Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround Sound System, four-zone automatic climate controls, and more.

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The EQXX Concept features a crazy driving range.

Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz is putting its century-plus of automotive experience into building electric cars, and the results are impressive. The EQS is an electric flagship with great range, and the automaker has unveiled several concepts to show its future plans. The Vision EQXX concept debuted today as an ultra-efficient luxury EV with astonishing range numbers.

Mercedes-Benz EQXX Concept Mercedes focused on efficiency over power with the car. Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes' focus with the EQXX is efficiency over power, as it says the car is its most efficient it has ever made. The EQXX uses less than 10 kWh per 100 kilometers (around 62 miles), which equates to 620 miles on a single charge. The battery was designed with tech and knowledge from Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 team, especially when it comes to size and weight. The EQXX's battery pack is 50 percent smaller by volume and 30 percent lighter than the pack in the EQS, which already featured astonishing efficiency.

The car's impressive range comes at the expense of horsepower, which in this case means just 201 ponies from the EQXX's electric drivetrain. Mercedes says that the system is capable of delivering up to 95 percent energy efficiency - an impressive figure for power delivery to the wheels. Extremely efficient gas powertrains only achieve around 30 percent efficiency and a human long-distance runner can hit around 50 percent.

Mercedes-Benz EQXX Concept The EQXX is impressively slippery, which improves its range.

The EQXX is a slippery car, too, and with a drag coefficient of just 0.17, the car cuts through the air with ease. The typical EV uses up to two-thirds of its battery capacity just to push through the air, so the EQXX's aerodynamics is a big part of its efficiency. The other big part is Mercedes' thermal management system, which uses shutters and cooling plates to maintain an ideal battery and electric drive unit temperature. The plates allow the EQXX to gain about 12 miles of range in its most aerodynamic mode.

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