Inside the Bugatelier, three elegant designs are carefully arranged next to each other. “It’s the Bugatti type 55, the Type 38 and the last 57. On these different cars, we intervene with engine repairs, simple repairs or even the replacement of the dashboard”, notes Antoine Schann, the owner of this workshop. specialized in the repair and restoration of Bugattis built before 1945. Created eight years ago, the Bugatelier is located in an old farm in Oberhausbergen, on the outskirts of Strasbourg (Bas-Rhin) .
“It was my father, who loved the luxury brand, who created this unique place in the east of France”, admits the 37-year-old. At that time, unemployed and 54 years old, Christian Schann had the idea to launch a garage dedicated to the repair of Bugatti cars whose headquarters are twenty kilometers away, in Molsheim. “There were already authorized restorers in Paris, in Vaucluse but none in Alsace. It seemed important to me to offer a restoration solution to the owners of old Bugatti models when the historic factory is in our region,” says the 62-year-old now.
A reference to the world in its field
“The most difficult thing was to create a large database by retrieving the plans of every part for every model we modify. We were able to recover 25,000 copies of the factory plans purchased in England,” continues Christian Schann. Thanks to these valuable documents, Bugatelier has become a world reference in production of Bugatti car parts since the beginning of the 20th century. “We rebuild parts according to plan: every bolt, every washer. It’s precision mechanics. Everything has been handmade by Bugatti since 1909 (date of creation of brand by Ettore Bugatti) so we have to respect knowledge and history,” says his son Antoine Schann.
The latter is proud to open the drawers of his workshop and display thousands of recycled screws. “We have taken on an exclusive supply of screws and bolts for vintage Bugatti models throughout France,” he adds. The knowledge that has made Bugatelier famous since 2014 and 5,000 to 6,000 collectors of these luxury cars are referred to on all continents.
Each model costs several hundred thousand euros
“Many of our customers are owners of old Bugatti cars who live in Alsace but also in Luxembourg, Switzerland or Belgium. Each model costs several hundred thousand euros, so we must provide them with excellent service in record time. Hence the importance of having every part for every car”, insists Christian Schann.
The skills of the Schann duo have crossed European borders. “Special Bugatti garages around the world know that we make drawing parts. Recently, we have had orders from Australia and India to send clutch shafts and valve guides that cannot be found elsewhere,” says Antoine Schann. A young manager whose main pride is “ensuring the maintenance of old cars from the Bugatti collection held by the historic headquarters. This is the final recognition of the seriousness of our work! »