1926 Bugatti Type 39A Grand Prix
|Written by Donald Osborne|
|Saturday, 30 June 2007 16:00|
In valuing a race car, some of the usual rules don't apply. This car has had its frame replaced. Does that make it less valuable? Perhaps not
Without doubt, Ettore Bugatti found his feet as an internationally recognized manufacturer of high-performance motor cars in 1926. The Type 39A was his first supercharged racer that really worked and gave little if any teething trouble. The 1926-27 Grand Prix Formula demanded cars of no more than 1,500 cc, with a minimum weight of 1,320 lbs, 110 lbs less than the limit for the 2-liter Grand Prix category of 1924-25. Riding mechanics were not required and a cover was permitted for the unoccupied second seat.
Bugatti modified his successful and highly reliable Type 35 straight-8 cylinder engine design to match this new capacity. To achieve maximum horsepower and torque, these 1.5-liter engines were now supercharged, the first time a Grand Prix Bugatti employed forced induction. This smaller-engined but now "blown" Type 35-derived model emerged from the Molsheim factory as the Type 39A.