Best in Show Foreign

2018 Best in Show Foreign

1937 Bugatti T57S
Rare Wheel Collection – Windermere, FL

Etorre Bugatti began manufacturing cars in Germany in 1909. He was from an Italian family of artists and considered himself a builder as well as an artist. Etorre’s father was a noted Art Nouveau artist, designing beautiful furniture and jewelry. The company had much success in motor racing and a Bugatti won the inaugural Monaco Grand Prix in 1929. In addition to automobiles, Bugatti also experimented with airplanes and rail cars.
The model designation of S refers to Surbaisse, the French word for “lowered.” This refers to the all-new suspension design which results in a much lower center of gravity. A key part of the suspension system was the newly designed shock absorbers.
A dry sump oiling system allowed the powerplant to be lowered, furthering the extreme low-slung body. To accommodate the low height, the axle is passed through the rear frame.
This car was delivered in May, 1937 in Noir, France to Dr. Andre Chauvenet. He was a child prodigy who completed his baccalaureate at the age of 15 and served in World War I for the French Army. He then attended medical school in Bordeaux and became a surgeon specializing in internal medicine.
Only 43 T57S’s were produced. The company lasted until 1952 and has recently been resurrected.