American Marketer

Events / Causes

Bugatti fetes brand legends with exclusive vehicles

July 25, 2013


Bugatti Automobiles is celebrating six brand legends with limited-edition vehicles to evoke an appreciation for the company's history.

Les Légendes de Bugatti will honor these figures at events over the next year, starting with Jean-Pierre Wimille. Distilling a history in segmented events gives fans and consumers multiple opportunities to interact with the brand.

"Our customers and fans of the brand have a deep understanding of the brand’s heritage and take great interest in it," said Manuela Höhne, head of media relations at Bugatti, Molsheim, France.

"We are using the opportunity to speak about this history by telling the stories of six personalities who were closely linked with the brand," she said.

"Through commemorating them and giving their cars a modern makeover, we are celebrating the brand’s history and at the same creating a link between its past and the presence."

The shoulders of giants

The six honorary vehicles will all be based on the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse.

The Bugatti legend Jean-Pierre Wimille begins the celebration. The production run will be limited to three vehicles.

Jean-Pierre Wimille

Mr. Wimille's story is intertwined with the 24 Heures de Mans race where he won in 1937 and 1939. The Bugatti 57G Tank driven by Mr. Wimille during his 1937 victory is the inspiration behind the commemorative vehicle's design and its blue shades.

The winner of Le Mans 1937

The next five vehicles will host details that reference the characteristics of the models driven by the legends.

The Buggatti Legend Jean-Pierre Wimille will debut in the United States during the Quail and Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance Aug. 16-18.

Bugatti Legend “Jean-Pierre Wimille”

The year-long event gives Bugatti several occasions to show off its accomplishments.

"This is a great opportunity to speak about the brand from a different angle," Ms. Höhne said.

"And limited editions, in general, are very popular with our customers," she said.

Round and round

With the abundance of summer races and events, many luxury automakers have found ways to honor brand history.

For example, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars engaged historians and brand enthusiasts though a live-action sand painting social video that tells the history of the company.

The 11-minute video depicts the entire history of Rolls-Royce beginning with its founding in 1904 and ending with the current vehicle and logo design. The video was released Dec. 17 through the brand’s Facebook, Tumblr and YouTube accounts (see story).

Similarly, Bentley Motors celebrated its heritage through a short film that traces its role in the development of the 24-hour Le Mans race to educate car enthusiasts and win over new fans.

“Le Mans 24 hours: Les Bentley Boys” coincides with the actual Le Mans race that runs for 24 hours, which began June 22. This year’s race marked the 10th anniversary of the British automaker’s previous victory and the 90th anniversary for the race itself, both of which the film discusses in its sweeping panorama of the company’s roots (see story).

Ensuring that history-leveraging events are well represented on social media is imperative for exposure.

"Social media platforms are a perfect venue for increasing brand awareness and fostering the relations with our fans," Ms. Höhne said.

"That is why it is one of our main objectives to bring across our brand values through these channels in addition to the traditional ones," she said.

"The Bugatti legends are a good example for that."

Final Take
Joe McCarthy, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York