In 1998, Volkswagen AG acquired the Bugatti brand.
It was soon decided that the next generation of the legendary cars could only be produced at Molsheim in Alsace, which had been home to the Bugatti brand from the very beginning. Yet the Bugatti story comprises only a part of Molsheim’s impressive heritage. For many years during the Reformation and Counter-Reformation the bishops or the archdiocese of Strasbourg resided in the small Alsatian town. And it was once home to a famous Jesuit university, which later relocated to the larger neighboring town.
Today’s manufacturing plant covers only a small part of the original area, where up to 1200 workers used to assemble the classic Bugatti models. The administration offices are housed in the renovated Château Saint Jean, and the Veyron 16.4*) is assembled in the newly built, oval studio. A simple storage building and the two reconstructed coach houses complete the facility. The orangery and the old factory gate remain unaltered, original witnesses to the era of Ettore Bugatti.
It was here in Molsheim that the Italian automobile pioneer founded his legendary Bugatti car manufacturing plant. It was here that he celebrated the racing victories of his cars and evolved from a respected businessman to a living legend. And it was here that the story of one of the world’s greatest automobile brands came to an end – or rather, a temporary halt. For the tradition of ingenious engineering coupled with high aesthetic standards that began with Ettore Bugatti has now resumed with the start of production in 2005.