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Pagani Huayra: The Why-Air-Ra is better in Red. And in the flesh

Tue, 01 Mar 2011

The Pagani Huayra on the Geneva floor. A picture in red carbon fibre

Horacio Pagani has brought along his long-awaited replacement for the Zonda – the Pagani Huayra – to the Geneva Show floor. And it looks a lot better in the flesh than even the best of the Huayra photos we’ve seen so far.

But we also think there’s a lot of the ‘Better when you see it’ going on with the Huayra. On a more prosaic scale (not that it’s prosaic per se, just relatively in this context) it’s like the Jaguar XJ. Half the world condemned its design in photos, only to change their minds they saw it in the flesh.

Yes, the Huayra is more generic than the Zonda. Gone is a lot of the drama and in its place sits an almost corporate hypercar. A corporate hypercar which does evoke the Zonda’s drama, just in a more grown-up way.

There are some bits that still jar in the flesh – mainly the gaping gob which looks like a cross between the old Peugeot school of car nose design and a Monk fish.

Still, with 700 horses and 740lb/ft at its disposal and 0-60mph in 3.3 seconds, you can forgive the odd ugly bit. In the same way you can love a woman with ugly feet when the rest is drop dead gorgeous.

Mind you, by and rational sense of ‘Value’ the Huayra is unsaleable. It’s going to be four times the price of the Lamborghini Aventador and yet it offers nothing – apart from ultimate exclusivity – the LP700-4 can’t match. Even the Aventador’s performance is better. Never mind. We’re sure Horacio Pagani will find homes for the 40 odd a year he hopes to build.

And perversely, we’ll probably declare it the best thing since sliced bread when we get to drive it.

By Cars UK