As a classic car enthusiast, the history behind the brands always attracted me. The legendary Bugatti triumphed in the first half of the 20th century until its death but a brief existence in the 1990s proved no less interesting.
The Emilia-Romagna region in Northern Italy could easily be considered the heart of high-end automobile production. The city of Modena, for example, is thriving with headquarters to sports car giants like Ferrari, Maserati, Pagani and De Tomaso. But if you visit the neighboring town of Campogalliano you can witness another side to the fight for success in the form of an abandoned but beautifully designed factory where luxury Bugatti cars were once manufactured.
Romano Artioli a wealthy Italian businessman, bought the rights to use Ettore Bugatti’s name and many of his other assets from the French government in 1987. Between 1992 and 1995 the factory let out its last breath as it produced the EB110. Around 80 vehicles were made, each going for a salty retail price of $349,000, but that couldn’t keep the factory from closing its doors for good.
It was 1996 when the Italian entrepreneur filed for bankruptcy. Six long years went by before German Volkswagen Group resurrected the iconic Italian brand, moving production and assembly to France.
The magnificent Italian Bugatti factory still stands today, abandoned and virtually untouched since 1995.