Pagani Huayra R First Look Review: An 850-HP Track Weapon

We can’t imagine you’ll often hear the word “no” echoing down the cool, polished hallways of Pagani’s HQ over in San Cesario sul Panaro, Italy. Well, you might get some sort of “no” if you ask the reps there if you can take one of their carbon fiber hypercars out for a spin, or if you could swap your rental Fiat parked out front as a deposit, but it’s not a word usually told to legitimate customers.

“No” is the killer of dreams and establishes boundaries—two things Pagani isn’t in the business to do. If you have a Scrooge McDuck bank balance and a fistful of neat ideas, we’re reasonably sure few requests are rejected. All this within the confines of the law, of course. Even Pagani can’t cheat every dream into street legality, a rare restriction shared by every automaker—both gargantuan and itty-bitty—that gives rise to outrageous track-only fever dreams such as the Ferrari FXX K, Lamborghini Essenza SCV12, and the McLaren Senna GTR.

Oh, and topically, this also includes the shrieking, Gotham-esque Pagani Zonda R produced between 2009 and 2011. Think of that in the same cocaine-laced limelight as the aforementioned Ferrari FXX K; the Zonda R is what a Zonda racing prototype would look, sound, and scoot like if there were no pesky FIA looming over the regulation-filled rulebook.

If you understand the Zonda R, then wrapping your head around the new Huarya R will be a cinch. This is the first track-only Huayra variant and the second track-only Pagani overall, sharing lineage with the aforementioned Zonda. It’s a Huayra, deconstructed; everything that isn’t necessary to the pursuit of speed is removed, and anything that remains is pared down and optimized. This acetic approach extends to every panel, every bolt, every input, and the result is one of the most visually and aurally exciting track cars ever to fill a billionaire’s fleet.

Emphasis on aurally. With no emissions regulations to satisfy, the Huayra’s naturally aspirated 6.0-liter Mercedes-AMG V-12 is tuned for track duty. No turbos, no problem—power is up, up, up over any street Pagani, ever. Thanks to special engineering by the race team and AMG supplier HWA Team, the free-breathing V-12 screams out a mighty 850 hp and 553 lb-ft through a heavily modified version of the production Huayra’s six-speed single-clutch semi-auto transmission. As you can hear in the debut video, it sounds downright eldritch, and very much like the old Formula 1 V-12s of yore.

Powerful as thunder, light as a cloud. That 6.0-liter weighs just 436 pounds, or about the same as a Chevy LS1. Pretty on brand for the rest of the car, as lightness is the real secret sauce and the fervent focus of the mad, mad engineers behind this Italian batmobile. You can hardly blame Pagani for skimping on the carbon for the road Huarya, but the R is on another level when it comes to exotic materials.

The monocoque and nearly every surface that shields it is composed of Pagani’s proprietary carbo-titanium material and cutting-edge carbon fiber variants. All of this applied material science results in a claimed 51-percent increase in flexural rigidity and a 16-percent increase in torsional rigidity when compared with the road Huayra, not to mention a wild dry weight of just 2,314 pounds.

So, not much for that whacko V-12 to push around. No word yet on performance figures, but expect it to be ludicrously quick, and it’s a good thing the R is decked out with an array of wings, spoilers, vents, channels, and fins that would make an airforce hot under the collar. With all this aero stickiness working in tandem, there’s a whopping 2,200 pounds of downforce present at 199 mph—so we know it goes at least that fast.

Both the suspension and the brakes are also bespoke and focused for the Huayra R. The rigidly-mounted active suspension pulls development from the older Zonda R, though Pagani doesn’t specify what suppliers it worked with—if any—to get the Huayra’s suspension dialed in. The brakes are very much from Brembo and feature competition-spec carbon-ceramic discs at all four corners.

All yours for right around $3.1 million based on today’s conversion rates. We suspect that even if you mailed a check for that amount to Pagani right now, your chance of securing one of the thirty build slots is rather unlikely. This is a Pagani, after all. The waiting list for any of their cars is long, and most special editions sell out before they’re even able to officially open the order books. If you are one of the lucky 30, expect a full calendar of exclusive Pagani track days around the globe as part of the legendary Pagani ownership experience.

Source: Read Full Article