Production Bugatti Galibier to revive Royale nameplate?

Bugatti Galibier 16C concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

With production of the Veyron winding to a close, Bugatti is preparing to move on to the next big thing. That thing, as has oft been reported, is expected to be a production version of the Galibier concept sedan from last year. The latest reports, however, suggest that it won't be called the Galibier when it hits exclusive showrooms, but rather revive the classic Royale nameplate.

The original Bugatti Royale was the very height of opulence, packing a 12.7-liter straight-eight into a 21-foot limousine. That's bigger than a Rolls-Royce Phantom or a Ford F-450. Ettore Bugatti planned on marketing the vehicle to heads of state (hence the name), but when the Depression rolled around, sales projections plummeted and Bugatti only made six of them. The remaining 23 engines were used to power locomotives.

The Royale celebrated its 80th birthday in 2007 when five of the six examples in existence gathered for the Goodwood Festival of Speed. If the 800-horsepower, sixteen-cylinder Galibier were to be put into production as the Royale (with or without cheese elephant hood ornament) sometime next year, it would mark the original's 85th anniversary. One way or another, we'll find out soon enough. In the meantime, you can check out the Galibier and the Royale reunion at Goodwood in our high-resolution image galleries.

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