The Huayra R Is A Sign Pagani's Almost Ready To Move On

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Image: Pagani

I feel almost nothing looking at these pictures of the new Pagani Huayra R, the latest, most hardcore and supposedly one of the last versions of the Huayra that the Italian boutique supercar maker will build.

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Like other Huayras, this one has a 6.0-liter V12 from AMG. However, this particular iteration is naturally aspirated and develops 850 horsepower. The Huayra R weighs just 2,314 pounds and generates way more downforce than any previous Pagani. It costs 2.6 million euros before tax — nearly $3.1 million — and just 30 will be built. I’m sure their owners will love ’em.

In fairness to the Huayra R, my disinterest has nothing to do with the car itself. Track-focused hypercars that can’t legally run in any category of motorsport have never made a ton of sense to me, though they’re a cool show of unbridled performance, and the Huayra R earns points for its commitment to the naturally aspirated V12 and stylish exterior. I mean, you could put a picture of this and the Zonda R next to each other and depending on how recently I woke up or how much I’ve had to drink, I probably wouldn’t be able to tell them apart — but that’s another story.

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Image: Pagani

Rather, my feelings are an inevitable consequence of Pagani’s glacial release cycle. It makes a car, and then it sells special editions of that car for 10 years, and then it makes another one. It’s only done this twice, but because that’s transpired over the course of two decades, I often find myself wondering whether Pagani is still a thing or not.

And look, Pagani doesn’t have to change its process for anybody. There’s something refreshing about the one car approach in this age of excess, and the understanding that once said car reaches its final form, like the Huayra R, it’s time to move on. So while I’m finding it hard to care about the Huayra R itself, I also sort of do because of what it represents. It’s a sign that the next Pagani is coming. As we’ve established, that’s a rare event in the course of world history.

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Image: Pagani
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What will the Huayra successor be, then? It’s codenamed C10, and it’s been a while since we’ve heard anything about it. Back in 2019, founder Horacio Pagani told Road & Track that both twin-turbo V12 and battery-electric versions would be sold, with the V12 optionally paired with either a manual or a paddle-shift transmission. At the time, Pagani said the car would arrive in 2021. You can imagine there’s at least a small chance that schedule might’ve slid in the past year.

Until that day comes, we have the Huayra R — a pretty neat track machine in its own right, but also a symbol that Pagani is right on the brink of another transformation.

DISCUSSION

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I feel almost nothing reading articles that complain about being bored by incredibly impressive feats of mechanical and aesthetic engineering that would make any actual car enthusiast weak in the knees to see in person. Why do we have to affect such a tone of disdain? Paganis, point blank, are incredible. I had a poster of an early Zonda on my wall as a teenager and I remain forever in awe of them.

And for what it’s worth, every scrupulous journalist should be disinterested. It’s the ones who are uninterested that really ruffle my feathers.