Fashion mogul Ralph Lauren has good taste in cars. That, and very deep pockets. The latter certainly helps to facilitate the acquisition of incredible automotive creations, which he proudly displays at some of the leading concours events on both sides of the Atlantic.
While Lauren is a mainstay at glamourous events like Pebble Beach he is also known to turn up at the smaller, though no less elitist, historic car gathering on the shores of Lake Como. The car Lauren brought to Villa d’Este this year was none other than a super rare Bugatti 57SC Atlantic – reportedly worth north of $40m – which won Best in Show at Pebble Beach in 1990, back when the Italian event was still struggling to get back on its feet after a 40 year hiatus.
The Type 57 Atlantic is one of Jean (aka Gianoberto Maria Carlo) Bugatti’s finest creations. With a long hood and teardrop shaped rear, its aluminum body was strewn with rivets to hold it together. But this is no regular Type 57. Lauren’s supercharged SC generated 200hp (25hp more than the S) and was capable of 120mph top speed when it was built in 1938. It also has the exclusivity factor in spades, as it’s one of only two ever built.
The sheer rarity of this beautiful vehicle makes it enough to stand out, but it is the preservation of this example that caused it to win awards in nearly every category. It won Best in Show by the Jury; Coppa d’Oro Villa d’Este (Best of Show by public referendum at Villa d’Este); Trofeo BMW Group Italia (By public referendum at Villa Erba – the second, public day); and the Trofeo BMW Group Ragazzi (awarded by people under age 16 at Villa Erba).
Congratulations are definitely in order.