Bugatti Logo – Is it a horseshoe or an egg at radiator grille?

Bugatti, now part of Volkswagen AG’s vast empire, was established in 1909 as a manufacturer of high-end performance cars. The company was established by Italian-born Ettore Bugatti who came from a family of designers and architects. Bugatti logo has a direct reference to its history through a stylized ‘EB’ engraved in the oval.

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Bugatti Information

Founded 1909
Founder Ettore Bugatti
Headquarters Molsheim, Alsace, France
Official website www.bugatti.com
Owner Volkswagen AG

Bugatti Logo Meaning and History  

Since Ettore Bugatti’s father was a furniture and jewelry designer in Italy, it was natural for the former to develop design sensibilities early on in his career. By the time Ettore turned 20, he had developed and showcased a prototype which won a prize at the Milan Trade Fair. This opened doors for him to work with automaker Lorraine-Dietrich where he developed Type 3,4,5,6,7 between 1902 and 1904.

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He established the eponymous automobile company, Automobiles E. Bugatti, in 1909 in Molsheim (under German control at the time). Bugatti put a high emphasis on design and introduced some innovations in its cars. Most notable of these was the hand scraping of engine blocks which did not require gaskets for sealing.

The safety wires threaded through fasteners appeared in intricately laced patterns which are often linked to the 60 red dots in the Bugatti logo. Another theory suggests that Bugatti logo was created by Ettore Bugatti’s father Carlo Bugatti who likened Bugatti cars to fine jewel pieces. Since the history of Bugatti Logo isn’t well documented, there is no way of confirming if it is right or not.

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Bugatti cars regularly participated in racing to showcase their engineering prowess. In fact, Bugatti had a one-two finish at the first Monaco Grand Prix.

Bugatti radiator grille – Is it a horseshoe or an egg?

Another prominent feature in Bugatti cars is the horseshoe-shaped radiator grille but it is interesting that the grille is actually based on the design of egg. That’s correct! Carlo Bugatti considered oval among the purest perfect shapes and this thinking had a profound impact on his son. As a result, Ettore Bugatti designed the grilles of his cars taking inspiration from eggs and the initial cars featured full egg grilles.

Bugatti Type 13
Bugatti Type 13 with Full-egg Grille

It was only in 1924 that he zeroed on flat bottom radiator grille considering aerodynamics and better positioning on the front axle. The first model to feature this new design, which looked like horseshoe, was Type 35.

Bugatti Horseshoe Grill
Bugatti Chiron with Horseshoe Grille

Bugatti Logo Description

Bugatti emblem is a horizontal oval with a narrow bordering with sixty red dots. The inside of the oval is painted in red and contains BUGATTI inscription in the center followed by a stylized EB on top of brand name. While BUGATTI is written in white color with black shades, the choice is black for EB monogram.

The prominent red color in Bugatti symbol represents power and passion while black and white stand for excellence and elegance, respectively.

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