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Normally there is every year a weekend meeting organized by the Enthusiasts Bugatti Alsace (EBA) in Molsheim but 2009 was a special year for the Bugattisti as Bugatti is celebrating its centenary. This was the reason why the EBA and the Bugatti Club France joint their forces to organize an 8-day meeting.

The first part of the meeting (11.09-16.09.2009) organized by the EBA was dedicated to the history of the Company and its founder Ettore Bugatti in the Molsheim region. The second part (16.09- 20.09) by the Bugatti Club France was a tour from the Alsace to Paris with visits at Moet&Chandon  and a final exhibition of the cars on the Champs Elysées.

We had the opportunity to visit the first part of the event before heading to Goodwood.

The meeting started on Saturday with the visit of the 2 company in Molsheim carrying the Bugatti-Name. In the morning the participants had the opportunity to visit Messier Bugatti, the company founded by Ettore and Georges Messier 100 years ago which still is a strong supplier of aviation parts.

After the lunch the cars were driven to Bugatti SAS, the subsidiary company of the Volkswagen group. The factory is in direct neighbourhood of the Villa Saint Jean that was restored a few years ago and now serves for representation of the new company. The cars were parked in the garden of the villa for a small concours with judges from the international press (Mick Walsh from Classic and Sports Car and Malte Jürgens from the German Motor Klassik just to name a few), Bugatti-Experts and Achim Anscheidt (Head of the Bugatti Design).

Unfortunately the concours was not open to the public but reserved for so called VIPs and prospective clients leaving many of the far travelled Bugattisti standing outside the fence.
Things where even worse as some bushes were placed to hide the society from prying eyes.

On this day the Volkswagen group missed an opportunity to present themselves as the new keeper of the rich heritage of the company and one might become the impression that the Bugatti- brand is just a marketing tool to reach a clientele that the VW- name can´t. The keen ear not often heard the name Bugatti outside the fence that day but more often “the company that builds the Veyron”. Especially from many of the French fans of the marque as it still is not easy for them that “their” company is now owned by Germans.

It also was no surprise that the cars from the Autostadt Wolfsburg were not seen outside the park the following days whereas the cars of the Schlumpf Collection were present at the parade and even at the race track on Tuesday.

The Sunday was the day of Molsheim. In the morning the cars were parked in front of the mint for breakfast and already hundreds of people were there to get a detailed view of the cars.
After a visit at the family grave of the Bugattis the cars were back in the afternoon for a parade through the old town of Molsheim. The streets were lined by thousands of people making this parade a huge fair. It seems that the organizers were surprised by the throng of people and they became afraid that something might happen so they just send off a few cars every now and then. But the more they had to wait the more undisciplined the crowd became and they passed the closed road every few meters. At the end the parade took a full 3 hours.

After the parade the cars were parked in front of the Cathédrale des Jesuites as part of a huge city festival with music and beer tents.
The highlight of the day was the presentation of some selected cars on a stage in front of the illuminated cathedral with an impressive firework at the final.

On Monday the cars drove to Strasbourg were the owners visited the European parliament. The cars were parked in front of the opera but it seems that this was not advertised in the city as there were just a few people passing by during the day. In the evening the convoy headed to Mulhouse where the cars were parked in the Schlumpf Museum over night.

Tuesday morning the cars were escorted by the police to the market place before leaving Mulhouse to the Ecomusée in Ungersheim. The Ecomusée shows the life in Alsace in the past with many ancient houses dismantled in the region and rebuild in the museum. This was a perfect location for the cars and the Ecomusée is worth a visit even without the Bugattis standing there. The crews had an extensive guided tour and lunch in the museum before leaving to the race track Anneau de Rhin to play with their toys for the first time this week.

At Anneau de Rhin even several cars of the Schlumpf Collection appeared to do some demonstration laps including the Royale and a T252 on it first outing for years. After the museum cars the participants had the opportunity to do several laps and they enjoyed them to the fullest. Some of them even continued to lap the circuit when it was open to modern cars again and showed some of the Porsche drivers how fast a Bugatti GP car still is after 80 years.

The last day of the first stage was even the first of the second and so there were some new cars seen on Wednesday on their way through the Vosges. After a break on the Markstein the crews had to fight their way through heavy fog with sights of less than 20 Meters before reaching the final of the first leg on the Col de la Schlucht.

When we look back on these days we see a totally different event compared to the Bugatti Tour in Maremma in may (we reported earlier this year). Whereas the international Bugatti meeting was a rally with about 200 km per day this event was more a meet and greet with supporting programme. For those who knew what to expect it was a meeting with several highlights (Molsheim, Ecomusee and Anneau de Rhin) and a few lengths (Strasbourg), but for the visitors there where many great cars to see.

Text and images Peter Singhof

Bugatti Centenary Molsheim 2009

002 Bugatti T57 Ventoux 1934 sn.57204

004 Bugatti T57 Coupé 1938 sn.57625

005 Bugatti T57 Atalante 1938 sn.57598

006 Bugatti T51 GP 1934 sn.51154

010 Bugatti T40 Cabriolet Fiacre 1928 sn.40623

015 Bugatti T57C Atalante 1937 sn.57570

016 Bugatti T43 GS 1928 sn.43230

017 Bugatti T35C GP 1929 sn.4930

019 Bugatti T44 Tourer 1929 sn.441010

021 Bugatti T23 Torpedo 1922 sn.1303

024 Bugatti T44 Roadster 1928 sn.44892

025 Bugatti T57 Coupé Paul Nee 1936 sn.57397

026 Bugatti T57 Ventoux 1936 sn.57782

028 Bugatti T44 Coach Tomas 1931 sn.441331

030 Bugatti T37A GS sn.37155-2

032 Bugatti T37 GP 1926 sn.37155-1

034 Bugatti T49 Roadster Uhlik 1931 sn.49274

035 Bugatti T35 GP 1925

037 Bugatti T37 GP 1926 sn.37124

039 Bugatti T40 GS 1929 sn.40793

042 Bugatti T35B R GP (PS)

044 Bugatti T44 GS 1928 sn.44417

047 Bugatti T43/57 Cab. 1930 sn.43293

049 Bugatti T38/44 GP 1926 sn.38101

050 Bugatti T57 Ventoux 1937 sn.57488

053 Bugatti T40 GS 1928 sn.40577

101 Bugatti T49 Cabriolet Gangloff sn.49558

102 Bugatti T57 Stelvio Gangloff 1936 sn.57366

103 Bugatti T40 GS 1928 sn.40825

104 Bugatti T57 Ventoux 1934 sn.57204

106 Bugatti T44 GS 1928 sn.44417

109 Bugatti T57C Cabriolet Aravis Letourneur&Marchand

1938 sn.57826

110 Bugatti T49 GS 1930 sn.49116

111 Bugatti T43 GS 1928 sn.43230

112 Bugatti T49 Roadster Uhlik 1931 sn.49274

113 Bugatti T35B GP 1930 sn.4955

114 Bugatti T57S Aérolithe 1935 recréation sn.57645

115 Bugatti T38 Lavocat&Marsaud 1927 sn.38240

116 Bugatti T57 Ventoux 1937 sn.57559

118 Bugatti T37A R GP 1927 sn.BC 117

119 Bugatti T35B R GP (PS)

121 Bugatti T57 Galibier 1939 sn.57761

122 Bugatti T35B GP 1926

123 Bugatti T37A GP

124 Bugatti T51 GP sn.BC 087

125 Bugatti T44 Roadster 1929 sn.441056

126 Bugatti T40 GS 1929 sn.40671

127 Bugatti T23 Roadster

128 Bugatti T44 Chassis sn.44817

129 Bugatti T40 GS 1927 sn.40221

130 Bugatti T40 Torpedo 1928 sn.40657

133 Bugatti T51 GP 1934

134 Bugatti T35B R GP (PS)

135 Bugatti T57 Atalante 1938 sn.57598

136 Bugatti T35B GP 1926 sn.4780

137 Bugatti T37 R GP

138 Bugatti T35B GP R (PS)

139 Bugatti T37A GP 1928 sn.BC114

140 Bugatti T37A R GP 1927 sn.BC 077

141 Bugatti T40 GS 1928 sn.40842

145 Bugatti T44 Roadster 1928 sn.44892

146 Bugatti T23 Torpedo 1922 sn.1303

149 Bugatti T40 GS 1929 sn.40793

150 Bugatti T13 Brescia sport 1923 sn.1654

151 Mathis

152 Bugatti T35B R GP 1926

153 Bugatti T44 Tourer 1929 sn.441010

154 Bugatti T35 GP 1925 sn.4640

156 Bugatti T39 GP 1925 sn.4604

157 Bugatti T40 Faux Cabriolet 1927 sn.40460

159 Bugatti T40 GS 1928 sn.40565

160 Bugatti T38 GS 1927 sn.38333

161 Bugatti T40 GS 1929 sn.40749

162 Bugatti T57C Galibier 1939 sn.57807

164 Bugatti T40 Cabriolet 1927 sn.40642

165 Bugatti T49 Faux Cabriolet Gangloff 1930 sn.49430

167 Bugatti T57C Atalante 1937 sn.57570

168 Bugatti T40 Torpedo Bousson 1927/33 sn.40636

172 Bugatti T44 Faux Cabriolet Gangloff sn.44931

173 Bugatti T35B R (PS)

174 Bugatti T19 Bébé Peugeot

176 Bugatti T252R cabriolet

178 Bugatti T57 Galibier 1937 sn.57603

179 Bugatti T40 Cabriolet Fiacre 1928 sn.40623

181 Bugatti T35B R GP 1926

Bugatti 16/4 Veyron

Bugatti Centenary Molsheim 2009

Bugatti EB110

Bugatti T101 Coupé Guilloré 1951 sn.101502

Bugatti T17 Torpedo Sport 1914 sn.765

Bugatti T252 Cabriolet 1957

Bugatti T30 Sport sn.BC118

Bugatti T30 Torpedo 1924 sn.4180

Bugatti T35 GP 1924 sn.4327

Bugatti T35A GP 1926 sn.4801

Bugatti T35B GP R (PS)

Bugatti T35B GP R 2001 sn.BC122

Bugatti T37 GP 1927 sn.37256

Bugatti T40 Cabriolet 1931 sn.40699

Bugatti T41 Royale Binder sn.41111

Bugatti T41 Royale Coupe Napoleon sn.41100

Bugatti T43 GS

Bugatti T43 GS 1927 sn.43183

Bugatti T43 Roadster Figoni 1929 sn.43272

Bugatti T46 Berline Milion Guiet 1933 sn.46523

Bugatti T46 Coupé Napoleon Rebody

Bugatti T50T Milion Guiet 1933 sn.50160

Bugatti T55 R Coupe 1932

Bugatti T55 Roadster 1932 sn.55215

Bugatti T57 Cabriolet Graber 1936 sn.57444

Bugatti T57 Ventoux 1938 sn.57628

Bugatti T57C Stelvio Gangloff 1938 sn.57679

Bugatti T57S Atalante 1936 sn.57384

Bugatti T57SC R Roadster sn.BC116

Bugatti T57SC Rep. Atlantic

Bugatti T73 1947 sn.73001