BUGATTI 57SC ATLANTIC 1938 – BLUE WITH BLUE METAL WIRE-SPOKE WHEELS
|Diecast model – Signature
|Approximate shipping weight
Jean Bugatti, son of the founder Ettore Bugatti played a large role in the development of the Type 57 series, personally designed the Atlantic. With its streamlined styling, low-slung chassis and super-charged engine, the 57SC (supercharged) Atlantic are one of the most desirable and best-known Bugattis. The “S” stood for “surbaisse” (“lowered”) though most felt it stood for “sport”. It included a V-shaped dip at the bottom of the radiator and mesh grilles on either side of the engine compartment.
The car appears to have taller proportions when compared to the Atlantics due to a much larger front radiator. It is the only Atlantic which may have had a body made entirely of magnesium as the production car used aluminum for safety and simplicity.
The first show car debuted as a possible sport model was a display car at the 1935 Paris Auto Show. It was created out of magnesium panels that were hard to weld, so Bugatti designed the car’s distinctive riveted seams. While the three production Atlantics were made of weld-able aluminum, the riveted joints were kept as a design cue.
Considered by some to be the most beautiful pre-war car, the Atlantic body Type 57SC featured flowing coupe lines with a pronounced dorsal seam running front to back. It was based on the “Aerolithe” concept car of 1935. Like the Type 59 Grand Prix car, the Aerolithe used Elektron (a magnesium alloy) or Duralumin (an aluminum alloy) for its body panels. Therefore, the body panels were riveted externally, creating the signature seam.
As majestic and unusual as the Atlantic was, it wasn’t suitable for series production with its high set doors, fussy construction and split front window. The design was revised into the Atalante which included the Aerolithe’s teardrop shape, with a flat windshield, a separate trunk area with the recessed spare-tire and full-size doors that retained the signature kidney-bean windows.
By the time production commenced in 1936, standard aluminum was chosen over the flammable electron and the specially lowered Type 57S chassis, with its smaller, V-Shaped radiator was used.
The Bugatti Type 57SC with its low profile, 200 bhp engine, and lightweight construction, has a top speed of 200 kph.
Today the Atlantic is generally considered Bugatti’s ultimate creation, which, by default, make it one of the finest cars ever constructed. The futuristic lines with its beautiful details also make it a true icon. During the last decades, the two original cars have been in long-term ownership and only the death of one of the owners resulted in one coming to the market.
It sold in the spring of 2010 for well over $30 million; the highest known price ever paid for a car. Both of the complete survivors have won the prestigious “Best of Show” award at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, further underlining their significance.
This model is made up of 584 separate metal and plastic parts, including photo-etched plates, metal wiring, screws, rivets, and nuts. The model weights 0.77 kg.