Last revised: 26-1-2009

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Bugatti Type 57: the Aravis

Bugatti_T57_C_Aravis_by_Letourneur_Marchand_1939

The last of the standard body styles was the Aravis, named after a region in the Northern Alps in France. It was introduced in 1938 and was a 2-door 2-seater convertible and sort of a combination between the Stelvio and the Atalante. The Aravis featured long, dramatic flowing lines with large, teardrop shaped fenders. It was only produced in 1939 and at least 10% more expensive than the Stelvio. Just a small number of Type 57 chassis with Aravis body style were manufactured, but quite a few have survived to this day

Bugatti_T57_C_Aravis_by_Letourneur_Marchand_1939All types of Type 57 chassis could be fitted with Aravis style bodies. There were Aravis delivered with the standard chassis and optional supercharger (like shown on these pictures) but also on the lower and shorter S chassis. These are probably the most special and valuable Type 57 models after the Atlantic; most of them also had the supercharger fitted, making them the sought after Type 57 SC Aravis. Only a handful of these very expensive cars were made.
Besides Gangloff in Colmar a number of other coachbuilders made Aravis bodies for Bugatti. The version of Letourneur & Marchand shown here is one of the better known. Apparently only three of these were made on the Type 57 C chassis. The teardrop-shaped chrome meshes over the headlights are unique to this car but a very fashionable accessory on avant garde cars during the late 1930s.
Apart from the convertibles at least one very beautiful Aravis fixed head coupe was made by Gangloff.

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