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Unveiling their first car at the 1999 Geneva Motor Show, Pagani Automobili was set to fight an uphill battle in the automotive industry for recognition, publicity, and, most of all, success. Taking it to the supercar establishment, Horacio Pagani set out to build his own supercar in Ferrari’s backyard in Modena. Thanks to a fruitful career at Lamborghini, Pagani had the experience and drive needed to succeed, and his first production model, the Zonda, quickly proved to be reasonably successful in Europe. However, the Zonda was not available in North America, and consequently, Pagani was missing out on a massive market share. This was especially true in the United States, where potential customers were clamouring for a supercar that stood out from the standard offerings from the likes of Ferrari, Lamborghini, and McLaren. In order to bring their company to the next level and grow their business, the next Pagani needed to be road-legal in the US.
The next project was actually first conceived in 2003, only halfway through the production run of the Zonda. With the Zonda having been first designed in the early 1990's, it was assumed that the platform was reaching obsolescence and that an entirely new car would be needed to compete with the next generation of supercars. However, Pagani wanted to retain the overall spirit and essence of what had come to define his marque and, for the new Huayra, he continued to be inspired by Leonardo da Vinci, who believed that art and science needed to be in sync to create a masterpiece.
Similarly to the Zonda, the Huayra’s engine was sourced from Mercedes-Benz but, unlike the Zonda, Pagani chose to utilise turbochargers. Capable of producing 720bhp and an incredible 1,000 Newton-meters of torque, the resulting performance is simply phenomenal. To help keep the Huayra firmly planted on the road, it utilises active aerodynamics in the form of four independently-operating flaps placed one at each corner of the car. Controlled by the car’s computer, these flaps can instantly adjust to reduce drag, offer additional downforce, or reduce body roll depending on the car’s speed, lateral acceleration, steering angle, and throttle position. All of these innovative engineering efforts contributed to the car's incredible performance, with a top speed of 238mph and 0–62mph (0-100kph) in 3.0 seconds.
The Huayra’s interior is nothing short of a masterpiece and reflects Pagani’s fanatical attention to detail. The leather is of the highest quality, and Alcantara and carbon fibre combine to produce a luxurious cabin with a really sporty feel. Fully customisable by the customer, the Huayra offered all the amenities one would expect in a modern-day supercar with a fit and finish that is second to none. With a list price that was not far off $2,000,000 in the US and such incredible performance, the Huayra was truly in a rarified automotive atmosphere and was a car that many aspired to but few had the privilege to own.
In left-hand drive and currently registered in the KSA, this amazing car has covered just 700km from new.