What is it?
Only the fastest roadster ever presented at the Geneva Motorshow, that's what. The Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse has a startling 1,200hp hiding under the rear deck, allowing it to sprint from 0-62mph in only 2.6 seconds - with the roof off. The 7.9-litre W16 engine also has 1,500Nm of torque, all thanks to four huge turbochargers.
Why's it here?
Well, not only will it undoubtedly make Bugatti a lot of money, but it's also the fastest roadster ever presented at the Geneva Motor Show. Justification for attendance earned. It's not as bonkers as the Lamborghini Aventador J though - for a start Bugatti has already built a pair of them. And despite the increase in power over the standard (1,001hp) car, the Vitesse is actually slightly more economical too. Much of the Super Sport's bodywork details will be carried over, but the open top Vitesse includes a new roof spoiler to reduce wind noise and buffeting in the cabin, which is as you'd expect, swathed in carbon fibre, leather, aluminium and magnesium.
Show stopper or floor filler?
Show stopper - of that there is no doubt, and for the right reasons too. Sure it's ludicrously expensive, representing all that is ridiculous about excess, but no petrolhead can genuinely say a 1,200hp roadster holds no interest for them. The fact there's two on the stand just means it has double the impact.
Graeme Lambert - 6 Mar 2012