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 Post subject: Discovered !!!!! Niniette VI
PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2006 2:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2006 9:36 pm
Posts: 367
Location: The Netherlands
Dear Fellow Bugatti Maniacs,

Jaap Horst found the following boat in a French book on the 2006 Retromobile in Paris. When he mentioned this I remembered that I had the same book on my shelfs, and had seen the boat before…. But did not realize the scarcity of information about this boat….. It was never mentioned in any Bugatti literature as far as we know. The book is “Classic Speedboats 1916-1929”and it is written by Gerald Guetat. The information presented below is copied form this book.


At Sturesnes on November 27, 1937, Niniette VI, with a hull and engine both by Bugatti, beat Theo Rossi’s 6-liter class record with 83.17mph. Her pilot was Maurice Vasseur. The boat was quite unique and had a new type of transmission inspired by outboard drives. The 4.7-liter in-line eight-cylinder engine developed around 400 hp at 5200rpm, and drove two contra-rotating screws. This was the only known example of a boat completely build by Bugatti; other racers powered by Bugatti engines had been build by independent naval boatyards The fashion for transmissions of this type started in France with inboard-engined boats.


In 1937, the Bugatti workshops built Niniette VI, a record-breaker equipped with Bugatti’s own 4.7-liter eight-cylinder car engine which put out around 400hp at 5200rpm. The right-angled transmission drove two contra-rotating screws. Maurice Vasseur broke Theo Rossi’s record in the 6-liter class with a speed of 83.15mph.


Is there more information know about this boat? All your help is welcome. I have planned to write a small article or small booklet about the history of all Bugatti’s Nautical projects…. You can reach me via or via the forum.

Best regards,


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