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Horacio Pagani was no newcomer to the world of automotive engineering when he built the first Zonda in 1999, for the Argentine-born industrial design graduate had been working with Lamborghini since the mid-1980's, developing the Countach and Diablo road cars and assisting with the Italian manufacturer's Formula 1 engine programme. The Zonda C12 debuted in Coupe form at the 1999 Geneva Motor Show, its maker freely acknowledging that its styling had been inspired by the Mercedes-Benz Group C Silver Arrow sports-racers. Mercedes-Benz's influence was more than just skin deep, for the German firm's AMG performance division was responsible for the Zonda's 6.0-litre V12 engine, which was mounted longitudinally amidships in the predominantly carbon fibre body tub. With some 408 horsepower on tap, the C12 was always going to be quick, but performance figures of 0-60mph in 4.2 seconds and 0-100mph in 8.2 seconds were simply staggering plus, of course, that all-important 200mph (or thereabouts) top speed. Seemingly small from the outside, yet endowed with a comfortable cabin, the C12 provided the basis for a host of derivatives, which emerged from Pagani's factory at San Cesario Sul Panaro near Modena, in strictly limited numbers over the next 11 years. After only a handful of 6.0-litre C12s had been built, the model was joined by the 7.0-litre C12 S in 2001. Maximum power increased to 542bhp with a commensurate increase in all-round performance, the 0-60mph time dipping below 4 seconds and, as if that wasn't enough, a 7.3-litre, 555bhp version followed in 2002. Traction control became standard equipment on a Pagani for the first time with the 7.3's introduction
Subsequent variations on the C12 theme include the Zonda GR sports-racer, C12 S Monza track-day car, C12 F and C12 Roadster F, Zonda R track car, Zonda Cinque and Cinque Roadster, Zonda Tricolore and various one-offs for wealthy clients.
This, one-off Zonda Riviera is another addition to the 760 Series and is based on a Zonda F. As has become a regular practice, owners of earlier models return their cars to the factory to be upgraded and, in this case, Pagani offered him the opportunity to create a one-off, totally bespoke 760 Series. Upgrades include new carbon fibre body panels, a roof scoop, a carbon fibre rear wing, carbon-black wheels and carbon fibre front canards on the exterior. The interior is fitted with bespoke brilliant blue leather bucket seats with matching door panels, a flat-bottomed Alcantara-covered steering wheel and an interior design mix of navy blue aluminium, navy Alcantara, navy carbon fibre and dark blue leather. Absolutely stunning. However, the most significant upgrade is to the AMG 7.3-litre M297 V12 engine which was massaged to 760PS (750bhp) helped by a brand new exhaust system making the car sound even better than it did before. The Riviera’s exterior styling is inspired by the blue and white Sunseeker and Ferreti packed marinas of the Côte d'Azur and naturally is in brilliant white with navy blue carbon fibre and bright blue accents. The car is Saudi registered and has covered less than 900km.
This amazing Zonda is one of the best looking and most desirable we have ever seen. It's unique in the proper sense of the word, one of one, the only one in the world.