For a couple of magical years, two of the most iconic supercars were being manufactured at the same time in Italy, just a few miles apart from each other. Ferrari produced the F40 between 1987 and 1992 in Maranello while Bugatti built the EB110 from 1991 until 1995 in Campogalliano. Of the two, the latter is far more exclusive. Only 139 EB110s were made whereas there are 1,311 examples of the F40. And now, the two are dueling in a pseudo-drag race.
The folks over at Carwow had the opportunity to race the poster-worthy supercars in an acceleration test to the quarter mile. Given the rarity and immense value of these vehicles, it’s no surprise the drivers didn’t push the EB110 and F40 to their full potential. Both were easy on the gas and clutch at the start and didn’t run the engines ragged. Despite being careful, something still went wrong.
Not only did it lose the race despite having a far better start, but the all-wheel-drive EB110 started making weird noises. It looks as though something happened to the front driveshaft, forcing the quad-turbo V12 supercar to retire before any chance to get its revenge. America then stepped in to take on Italy, with an early Dodge Viper going up against the F40.
Manufactured in 1991, this pre-production prototype with its naturally aspirated V10 went up against the twin-turbo V8 Prancing Horse. The Viper’s massive 8.0-liter engine made 400 horsepower back in the day, a substantial 80-hp deficit compared to the F40. It was also a lot heavier, but despite the odds being against it, the Dodge effortlessly beat the Ferrari.
That said, it’s obvious the fragile and extremely valuable F40 had a gentle start to make sure it wouldn’t suffer a mechanical malady like the EB110. It was a different situation in the rolling race to the quarter mile as the two were neck and neck and it ended in a photo finish. The Ferrari won the duel, and it also triumphed in the subsequent rolling races to the half-mile mark.
The last comparison was a brake test from 70 mph, which is always fun to see (and a bit dangerous) when the cars don’t have ABS. The Viper won that contest, but once again, we should point out that the F40 is worth a lot more, so the driver was never really going to take any major risks.