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					                                                Back on track

                                                                               Q2, 2006
                                        Has motor racing lost its relevance?
                                     GM’s former sporting chief has answers

                                             Ricardo develops revolutionary
                                                     measuring technology

                                          Diesel record bid
                                              JCB unveils world land speed
                                            contender, supported by Ricardo

Ricardo supports Bugatti to design,
develop and manufacture the driveline for
the Veyron – the world’s fastest road car
Bugatti Veyron

“The most advanc e
One thousand and one horsepower, sixteen cylinders, seven speeds and over
400km/h – transmission engineering challenges don’t come much tougher
than Bugatti’s fabulous million-euro Veyron supercar.Tony Lewin reports on
the support provided by Ricardo in the development and manufacture of one
of the most sophisticated driveline systems ever conceived

  t’s the front-cover splash of almost     but fact; thanks to Bugatti, this         easy to forget what a monumental
  every car magazine in the world.         remarkable display is now seen as         technical achievement the Veyron
  Everywhere, writers are struggling       achievable with a car that’s also         represents. It is especially important to
to find new superlatives to describe its   elegant, luxurious and refined, and       recall that, at the time it was originally
astonishing performance. And               which does not demand racing-driver       proposed in 2000, the idea of the 1001
everywhere the message is the same:        skills at the wheel.                      horsepower sports car seemed a nigh-
this million-euro machine redefines,         Bugatti has defied the doubters and     on impossible technical challenge.
dramatically and decisively, our idea      proved that 400 km/h and first-class
of what a car can do.                      comfort can indeed go together. Yet       VW chief astounds the industry
  The concept of a road car faster than    with expectations so suddenly and so      A moment of stunned silence gripped
a Formula One car is no longer fantasy     dramatically transformed, it is all too   the audience of international

ed car of our time”
 automotive journalists as the crowd of     21st century revival of what had in its    Bugatti marque was held during its
 normally talkative reporters choked in     heyday been the most glamorous             1920s and 1930s golden age. Its sports
 disbelief at what they had just heard.     marque in the world. “This will be the     and racing cars were engineered with
 The scene was the Nogaro Hilton            most exciting and most advanced car        absolute purity of focus, always light,
 Hotel in Geneva in March 2000, when                                        ”
                                            of its time, no more, no less, he          ingenious and elegant; the integrity of
 correspondents had assembled to            predicted.                                 the road-car chassis attracted the very
 hear Volkswagen’s then CEO, Dr                Previously, only a select few racing    best coachwork builders of the era,
 Ferdinand Piëch, deliver his annual        cars had breached the thousand-            producing style landmarks such as the
 state-of-the-union address to the          horsepower mark. It would clearly be a     Atlantique coupé and, at the opposite
 world’s business and technical media:      major technical challenge to feed this     end of the scale, the mammoth Type
 in the middle of a long stream of          power to the road safely enough for        41 Royale. In its exotic aura Bugatti
 corporate results, sales predictions       drivers with standard rather than          was the Ferrari of its time, but with the
 and bland technical statistics, Dr Piëch   competition licences: delivering such      equivalent of Rolls-Royce luxury,
 had casually tossed in the number          stupendous performance with the            radical thinking from Lotus and hard-
 which was to astound everyone – one        smoothness and refinement demanded         wired race heritage from McLaren
 thousand and one horsepower.               by an elite millionaire clientele was      thrown in too.
   For this, said Dr Piëch, would be the    likely to be a bigger issue still.           Undeniably, the task of
 power output of the new Bugatti                                                       reinterpreting this unmatched legend
 Veyron sports car. Only the absolute       Bugatti’s Heritage                         for the 21st century customer has
 ultimate in power, performance and         It is difficult from today’s perspective   been a daunting one. Accordingly,
 sophistication would suffice for the       to imagine the awe in which the            Volkswagen decided to call upon the

                                                                                   Q2, 2006 • RICARDO QUARTERLY REVIEW 09
Bugatti Veyron

With seven speeds, dual clutches, four wheel drive and an active rear axle,
the Veyron driveline (right) is one of the most complex ever bulit

very best skills on offer among the
world’s automotive engineering
providers to ensure the born-again
Bugatti would satisfy the
extremely high demands
placed on it by customers
whose automotive
portfolios already include
the likes of Bentley,
Ferrari, Porsche and
  For the embryo Bugatti
division, set up under
Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg
roof pending the
completion of the Bugatti
Atelier at the marque’s
famous Molsheim home
across the border in France,
Ricardo was the natural choice
of engineering partner for the
transmission and driveline system.
  Michael Kodra, Bugatti engineer in
charge of the liaison with Ricardo
throughout the programme, explains:
  “We had already worked with
Ricardo on smaller programmes – they
built the axles for two different show
cars that were presented, and these                 1250 Nm of torque, but also for
axles worked perfectly and without any              automated shifting and electro-
further problems. We also needed a                  hydraulic control of all key functions.
company which could supply us with a                The driveline, too, was to be of
gearbox at low volume: most of the                  exceptional complexity, with drive to     determine not just straightline traction
other big gearbox suppliers are seeking             all four wheels, an innovative active     but high speed vehicle dynamics too.
to make money through volumes, and                  rear axle, a Haldex coupling built into     What at the beginning was simply
we can only offer a run of about 300.               the front axle, and all the electronic    an outrageously fast pure sports car
Thanks to this and our previous                     and hydraulic control systems to          soon found itself doing double duty as
experience with them on the W18 and
W12 sports car, we decided that
Ricardo would be the best company to
support us on this job.”

Ricardo’s biggest-ever driveline
Though Ricardo enjoys an
unparalleled reputation in the field of
ultra high performance transmission
systems across both sports and racing
cars (providing drivelines for the
Jaguar XJ220, McLaren F1 and Audi’s
Le Mans winners, for example), once
the specification of the Veyron was
revealed it soon became clear that the
Bugatti transmission system would be
much the most sophisticated the
company had ever built. As a result,
the programme would be the largest
ever supported by the company’s
driveline and transmission engineers.
  Bugatti’s brief called not just for a
seven-speed dual clutch gearbox
capable of handling an unprecedented

                                                                    companies           anything ever seen among normally
                                                                     supporting the     fragile supercars.
                                                                      Veyron              The durability requirements make
                                                                       programme.       truly terrifying reading for any
                                                                        Yet, at the     engineer with an ounce of mechanical
                                                                        same time,      sympathy. Given that much of its
                                                                        the fact that   50,000 km is driven with the
                                                                       the Veyron       thousand-horsepower engine at full
                                                                      programme         throttle, the Veyron’s transmission
                                                                     became part of     durability programme must rate as
                                                                   the mainstream       one of the toughest the auto industry
                                                                 Volkswagen             has ever devised.
                                                              product development         Mike Everitt, senior programmes
                                                          process provided what         manager at Ricardo, believes that this
                                                 was to be the most challenging         regime makes the Veyron the
                                             task of all.                               strongest ultra high performance car
                                              By bringing the Veyron ‘in-house’,        ever built. “Wolfgang Schreiber has
                                            Bugatti’s new technical director,           genuinely shifted the goalposts in the
                                            Dr Wolfgang Schreiber, ensured the                              ”
                                                                                        supercar segment, he says.
                                            whole vehicle met the same daunting           Big-name supercars all too often
                                            durability targets that would normally      prove fragile in service. It is rumoured
                         a much more        be fulfilled by standard million-a-year     that one model is only capable of
                      luxurious, more       Golf-platform family cars – models          doing three full-bore launches before
                   Bentley-like vehicle –   which have to perform faultlessly in        the clutch needs to be replaced. The
               while of course retaining    service over many years of hard use.        Veyron, on the other hand, completed
          all its daunting performance      Prior to the arrival of the Veyron, the     200 consecutive full-throttle launches
       requirements. Attaining all          normal life expectancy for a rare           with consummate ease. “The testers
     these demanding design goals,          supercar was frighteningly short, with      only stopped because it was getting
    many of which would                     numerous pit-stops and replacement                    ”
                                                                                        too dark, remembers Everitt. “The
   conventionally be seen as totally        systems required at frequent intervals.     clutches were still fine.”
 incompatible, was a major                  What Schreiber prescribed was
achievement by Bugatti and all the          massively more demanding than

“When exposed to the full 1,250 Newton-metres torque of the
16-cylinder engine, the resistance of the air and even the force of
gravity itself seem to have no chance: the EB 16·4 Veyron eats up
the road as if these physical laws had just been abolished”
                                                                                                         Bugatti publicity, 2003

                                                                                    Q2, 2006 • RICARDO QUARTERLY REVIEW 11
Bugatti Veyron

                                         Design, development and                   brings home the scale of the multi-
MICHAEL                                  manufacture                               national Ricardo and Bugatti driveline
KODRA                                    The complexity of the driveline and its   team’s achievement. There are no
Michael Kodra is                         control system was such that Mike         fewer than 660 part numbers for the
the Volkswagen                           Everitt and his colleagues at both        driveline’s 1200 components and the
group engineer in                        Ricardo and Bugatti had to bring in       system breaks new engineering
charge of liaison                        extra engineers to ensure the             ground – particularly in its use of
with Ricardo and                         programme would keep to the very          seven forward speeds and twin
other key suppliers                      demanding schedule set by Bugatti: at     clutches, and in its real-time role in
                                         its peak, Bugatti’s engineering team      determining high speed vehicle
Did the experience with Ricardo          were supported in the programme by        dynamics through its active rear
gearboxes on the Audi Le Mans            over 50 Ricardo driveline and             differential and Haldex coupling.
winners influence your choice of         transmission engineers, with a further       The use of ADAMS simulation
driveline partner?                       12 -15 electronics specialists working    modelling of vehicle dynamics
No. We started this programme just       on the transmission control system        allowed Ricardo to provide Bugatti
before the Audi programme became         and additional engineers in vehicle       with much necessary data to develop
public. Ricardo always keeps its         engineering too. Two Ricardo              and optimise suspension kinematics,
other customers secret, so even we       engineers even took up residence in       to fine-tune the car’s driving
at VW did not know that this work        VW’s home city of Wolfsburg.              characteristics and present a range of
had been done for Audi in the race          “One mustn’t forget the absolute       options to Bugatti management.
cars.                                    enormity of the task that faced              “Bugatti engineers determined what
                                         Bugatti, explains Everitt. “It designed   the preferred calibration was to be,  ”
The driveline for this car is very       a car that’s not only the fastest and     says Mike Everitt. “They have been
complicated and has a huge effect        fastest-accelerating car in the world,    highly successful in calibrating the car
on the handling and driving              but one which is technically far more     in precisely the desired manner, with
characteristics of the whole vehicle.    advanced than any of its                  our assistance. We have helped them
How is it that VW can work together      predecessors.                             give the Veyron the character they
with an outside supplier when it is                                         ”
                                             “It has far more features in it,      were looking for.”
really determining how that vehicle      continues Everitt. “It’s four-wheel
will drive?                              drive, it is turbocharged, it has an      Driving the Veyron
Using the knowledge we have              active differential and an active drive   As a key figure in the Veyron
gained through working with              transmission system with dual             development process, Mike Everitt
Ricardo we have implemented the          clutches. The car is very sophisticated   was familiar with the astonishing
correct features into the car, such as   and is entirely new: new engine, new      abilities of the 16-cylinder Bugatti long
the rear axle differential, the          driveline, new chassis, new everything    before the international press was
electronic/hydraulic control, the        – and it’s attacking the market as the    finally allowed access to the car in
Haldex coupling which enables us to      most prestigious sports car ever built.   Sicily in October 2005.
have four wheel drive, and this dual     It has been a very formidable                While the assembled
clutch gearbox. We have been very        challenge.  ”                             correspondents were excited, effusive
successful in learning how to               Even a quick glance at the cutaway     and often emotional in their
calibrate and to optimize them.          of the Veyron driveline on page 10        comments, Everitt retains the level-
                                                                                   headed detachment of an engineer
What about the active rear                                                         professionally reviewing a technical
differential?                                                                      mission successfully accomplished.
At that time the rear differential                                                    Complex though the transmission
control was something VW had                                                       hardware undoubtedly is, he says, the
never had in its ordinary cars: we
were about to introduce it in the
Touareg luxury SUV. This is
definitely an item where we
needed to have a close look and
liaise with these [Ricardo] guys
in their work. On the gearbox
side, we have done
the same gearbox, though
much smaller and lighter, for
our ordinary passenger
ranges such as the Golf.
Here, Ricardo learned from
VW concerning some
software strategies and
so on. So I think we both share
a little bit, we both learn a
little bit.

                                                                                            while the second continuously
MANUFACTURING THE VEYRON DCT                                                                monitors it to double check that a
                                                                                            double engagement is not about to
                                                                                            take place.
                                                                                               Surprising though it may seem for a
                                                                                            car of such phenomenal performance,
                                                                                            the concept of everything working
                                                                                            faultlessly and seamlessly in the
                                                                                            background is an important part of the
                                                                                            Bugatti’s make-up – again making a
                                                                                            potent contrast to supercar
                                                                                            competitors which can be famously
                                                                                            temperamental and tricky to drive.
                                                                                               Mike Everitt describes it as silky
                                                                                            smooth and easy. “When the car
                                                                                            accelerates it is so fast that if you have
                                                                                            a clear road in front of you and you
                                                                                            can accelerate up to 150 mph (240

R    icardo is no stranger to low-volume, high precision transmission
     manufacture: its workshops have witnessed the assembly not only of the
drivelines for the McLaren F1, Jaguar XJ220 and Volkswagen W12 Nardo record
                                                                                            km/h) – which it will do in a matter of a
                                                                                            few seconds – it will be up to fourth or
                                                                                            fifth gear and you really didn’t even
breaker, but also five years of Le Mans winners for Audi and numerous other                 count them.
successful but less well known products. Even so, such is the importance of                    “If you are not watching the gear
Bugatti and the complexity of its driveline that a whole separate area of the               display change or watching the rev
Ricardo transmissions facility is dedicated exclusively to the assembly of the              counter needle change, if you’re just
Veyron system.                                                                              looking at the road and get to 150 mph
  Conditions in the Bugatti assembly area are akin to those of a scientific clean           and back off, you won’t actually know
room, with each of the driveline’s 1200 components receiving a three-stage                  what gear you were in because it does
cleaning process – culminating in an ultrasonic phase – before assembly.                                    ”
                                                                                            it so smoothly, he enthuses. “Even if
Component tolerances are close to aerospace levels at 6-8 microns, and exotic               you were in manual mode, if you don’t
materials include rare-earth magnets located on the gear selector forks for                 do anything the transmission will shift
extremely precise position sensors mounted on the external casing to monitor                up for you anyway when you reach
the exact location of selectors. This information is used in the control strategy           maximum revs.    ”
and helps rule out double gear engagements.
  “This is a very high quality, and clearly very high cost operation, says Adrian           Step-change for VW engineering
Turner, manager of Ricardo’s low volume production operation, of the                        From the customer side, VW liaison
manufacturing process. “It’s more akin to an advanced prototype build than                  engineer Michael Kodra is open in
series production – we call it dedicated cell manufacture. ”                                acknowledging that Ricardo’s expertise
  The cell system sees two technicians each assemble a single transmission a                has been invaluable:
week. Each stage of the assembly process is meticulously documented, with                      “I think that by being able to bring
the technician confirming every operation, measuring every tolerance and                    this car to the market with its driving
critical dimension and noting the thicknesses and positions of all shims                    behaviour every bit as [good as] we
employed. The multi-page document is held in the Ricardo database so that any               expected it to be, we have done a very
in-service problems can be traced back to individual parts of known history.                good job. Using the knowledge we
                                                                                            have gained we have implemented the
                                                                                            correct features into the car, such as
key throughout is the software that             selected gear and so on.   ”                the rear axle differential, the
controls it – even though the driver is            One of the key challenges of the         electronic/hydraulic control, the
unlikely ever to sense it doing its job.        gearbox is that it has, on VW’s             Haldex coupling which enables us
  Yet even Everitt cannot resist                insistence, a non-interlocked gear          have four wheel drive, and this dual
beaming broadly as he revels in the             selection system. This enables super-       clutch gearbox. We have been
experience of driving the sixteen-              fast shifts but, in contrast to             successful in achieving a good
cylinder, 400 km/h machine:                     conventional gearboxes where it is          calibration and optimisation of them.   ”
  “If you are driving the car you just          physically only possible to engage one         “The toughest part in most
pull a lever and all you see or sense           gear at a time, the mechanical              programmes is always the timing,     ”
(of the gearshifts) is that the rev             arrangement of the Veyron box makes         explains Kodra. “Right from the
counter needle falls or rises: it is slick      it theoretically possible to engage up      beginning of this job we had a very
and smooth but in the background                to four gears at once. It is a vital task   tight timetable to get this car into
there are a dozen valves controlling            of the control software to ensure that      series production. You need to
key parameters, changing clutch                 such a damaging occurrence can              remember that almost all the
pressures, shifting which gear is               never happen, and to this end Ricardo       components of the car are brand new
engaged and which is the next pre-              specified twin control networks, each       – the monocoque and suspension, a
                                                running on different software codes,        complete new engine, gearbox and
Left: Complex seven-speed dual clutch gearbox   written by different teams using            axles – all the systems have never
takes one week to assemble at Ricardo’s         different methodologies. The task of        played together in one car. We had this
precision manufacturing facility                the first is to control the transmission,   timetable because the car was

                                                                                       Q2, 2006 • RICARDO QUARTERLY REVIEW 13
Bugatti Veyron

                                                                                          presented quite early on, but as a
MIKE                                         rear axle behind the engine was defined,     prototype car. ”
EVERITT                                      but we explored issues such as whether         Such striving for engineering
Chief                                        the rear axle should form part of the        perfection is of course precisely what
programmes                                   engine cylinder block or should it be        the Bugatti marque stands for. Mike
engineer Mike                                separate.                                    Everitt cites the example of the
Everitt led the                                                                           significantly raised durability
work on the                                  Did you know the power and torque            requirements applied from 2004
Veyron driveline since joining               outputs? Did the very high values            onwards: new gear tooth designs
Ricardo in November 2000                     force you to think differently?              were employed to ensure they could
                                             Yes, we knew the power and torque, but       not only last the distance, but also
Ricardo has a lot of experience in high      only as headline numbers, and also the       maintain the level of expected
performance transmissions. Can you           wheelbase and the predicted weight. We       refinement at the end of the 50,000 km
build on designs you have done in the        knew that they wanted it to be four          durability test. The new gears solved
past, or does it have to be completely       wheel drive and that they wanted it to be    that issue conclusively.
new?                                         active not passive, meaning active
You have to visualize the project as         differential controls and active torque      "Nothing is too beautiful, nothing is
two distinct elements, the first being       distribution from wheel to wheel. Most       too expensive"
mechanical and the second the                things about this project forced us to       It was with this idealistic maxim that,
control. For both elements we worked         think differently.                           almost a century ago, Ettore Bugatti
very closely with the VW/Bugatti                                                          founded the company that, like none
engineering team to ensure both that         Is the transmission seven speed              before and precious few since, was
they got what they wanted and that           because with a Vmax of over 400              dedicated to absolute purity in design
we could incorporate their knowledge         km/h you have to cover such a large          and perfection in every detail. And,
of specific lessons learned from their       speed range?                                 though in 2006 the stakes are vastly
own DCT programme in the VW Golf             Yes: it’s also seven speed because           higher and the regulations governing
into the programme.                          reverse is in there as well, giving          automobiles are infinitely stricter,
In terms of the mechanical side it is to     eight gears in total, with four              there can be little doubt that the re-
some extent an analytical and                synchronizers and two gears per              incarnated Bugatti has produced a
formulaic process, but it is heavily         synchronizer – so that works very
influenced by the experience base            nicely. It also gives a nice even gear
that Ricardo and the VW/Bugatti              spacing on a car that will go seriously
engineering teams possess. Knowing           fast. Another advantage we had with
how the transmission needs to be             this transmission was that we could          Zothecas conubium santet lascivius fiducia
designed for this sort of application,       make first gear tall: this car will do its   suis. Pessimus utilitas cathedras spinosus
with its very demanding and                  0-100 km/h dash in first gear.
specialist environment, is something
that few companies have experience           In terms of the mechanical design of
of, but it is ground on which Ricardo        the system, is it more like a racing car
feels comfortable.                           transmission than a road car
   The control element of this gearbox       transmission?
was, however, the really innovative          No: I wouldn’t say it is like a race car
side: there are increasing industry and      transmission at all, it is like a race car
market moves towards dual clutch             transmission in the limited sense that
transmissions because of the benefits        it uses race car transmission type
you get in fuel economy and                  materials and very high grade steels
efficiency and driver feel. But to do        for the gears and shafts. It is fully
something in this area of                    synchronized on all gears including
performance was quite a challenge:           reverse, and all the gears including
things that work on a “normal” car           reverse are fully helical rather than
simply don’t just scale up when you          straight-cut. The emphasis on
get into this class of vehicle.              smoothness of shift and pull-away
                                             control is absolutely key to the whole
When you discuss a programme like this       nature and character of the car.
with a customer, who sets out the basic      I think everyone will be amazed at just
principles? Did VW simply want a             what a pussycat it can be. You can
transmission for a 400 km/h car?             bumble around at walking pace all
No. VW had some quite firm ideas at a        day long with absolutely perfect
feature level – minimum seven gears,         control: you have no juddering, no
very fast speed of shift and so on. Also,    kangarooing, nothing that many
the fundamental layout options possible      supercars suffer from. It is absolutely
were largely dictated by the defined         the easiest car to drive in terms of the
vehicle architecture, but lots of details    clutch and transmission as can be
were not defined at all.This meant for       seen from the many complimentary
instance that the gearbox in front and the   press reports of the car.

                                                                                     THE VEYRON IN FIGURES

Veyron speedometer reads up to 420 km/h;                                             Engine:       8.0 litre W16, four
left-hand gauge shows horsepower deployed                                                          turbochargers
model of rare distinction and true          many will go straight into private       Power:        1001 hp at 6000 rev/min
engineering integrity – a model which       collections, while the remainder are     Torque:       1250 Nm at 2500 rev/min
does genuine justice to the Bugatti         certain to lead a pampered existence     Transmission: Ricardo 7-speed
legend.                                     in air-conditioned garages under 24-                   dual clutch; drive
  Yet, having designed, developed           hour security guard. So, regrettably,                  to all four wheels
and built what is pretty convincingly       only a few elite individuals worldwide   Performance: 0-100 km/h: 2.5 sec
the world’s fastest, most powerful and      will ever be able to savour the unique                 0-200 km/h: 7.3 sec
most exclusive road car, there is just      experience of 16 cylinders, 1001                       0-300 km/h: 16.7 sec
one cause for regret. No more than          horsepower and the sensational return    Kerb weight: 1950 kg
300 examples of the Veyron will be          of the most illustrious marque the
built over its production lifespan;         auto industry has ever known.

                                                                                Q2, 2006 • RICARDO QUARTERLY REVIEW 15

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