We’ve seen variations on this before, of course. Hypercars and jet fighters go together rather well on video. Bugatti even mentions TG’s very famous Veyron vs Eurofighter Typhoon match-up in its press release, and is plainly riffing off the same idea. This time round it’s the Chiron in the firing line - specifically the Sport Edition ‘Les Légendes du Ciel’ that the firm unveiled last year in very limited edition format.
The car itself is unequivocally quicker than its predecessor - it delivers 1,500hp, after all - but whether or not the Rafale Marine is punchier than the Eurofighter Typhoon is probably a question best left to the forums. Wikipedia says the latter can hit Mach 2.0 (Bugatti has the Rafale pegged at 1.6) but presumably that's a less significant figure when we’re talking about a standing start. After all, the Rafale Marine is built to fly from carriers; the Typhoon is not.
Either way, the spectacle is more about marketing fluff than an actual race. But if you like awesome things then an aircraft with 58,550 newtons of thrust (5,727hp, if you’re wondering) going up against one of the world’s most exotic cars is an easy way to have us all clicking play on YouTube. Goes without saying that it's a celebration of some of the mightiest things to come from the oil-burning era, and with even Bugatti set to adopt electrification in its fullest form in the near future - and the next generation of fighter jets likely to be controlled remotely - there isn't long left to enjoy this sort of spectacle.
For anyone keeping score, Bugatti reckons the Rafale hits 165km/h after 150 metres, 210km/h after 250 and takes off after 450m at around 260km/h. Or as driver Pierre-Henri Raphanel puts it: "I pulled away from the Rafale over the first few hundred meters, but after a few hundred meters more it was around 20 meters above and alongside me in the air. An incredible and fantastic sight."
1 / 6