You want to buy a camera? We can pit it against three others with nearly indistinguishable features, no problem. Blu-ray players? We’ll compile a three-axis matrix that triangulates the perfect combination of image quality, connected functionality and price. But if you’re considering the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport, we can’t do much for you.
Comparing it to any other car is pointless, because there is nothing else in its $2.1-million (based on current exchange rates) class.
But even if its nav system shouted insults at you, it would be hard to complain about this machine. It is not perfect — no car will ever be. But it’s close. And it will likely remain as close as a car with a gasoline-burning engine will ever get. We’re at the end of the petroleum era, the end of a golden age of supercars where speed can be sought regardless of consequence. It’s highly unlikely that a major automaker will ever be able to justify spending the time and money to develop a fossil-fuel-powered car that can top the Veyron’s combination of power, speed, handling, driveability and flat-out luxury. The Grand Sport is the worthy successor to the Ferrari F40, the Lamborghini Diablo, the McLaren F1 and every other Texas tea-drinker that ever owned the title “world’s fastest.” And its high-level swank takes that prize with style points nonpareil.
Maybe we’ll idolize maglevs next. Maybe Tesla will have its day on a Trapper Keeper with a juice box that tops 250. But whatever we’re drooling over next year, whatever makes its way onto the dorm-room walls and man-children’s screen-savers, it won’t run on petrol. Unless it’s still a Veyron: the last king of the gas-guzzlers, forever the greatest. All hail.