15 minutes with… Horacio Pagani

UNLESS you’ve been living under a very large rock, you’ll know the name Pagani as an exclusive boutique brand that builds short run, ultra-high performance hyper cars – like the Zonda, and its current offering, the Huayra.

The company’s legendary founder and chief designer, Horacio Pagani, made a rare visit to Melbourne at the weekend, in town for just 24 hours for the opening of tyre maker Pirelli’s new flagship P Zero World concept store, and we caught up with him for a chat.

“Pirelli and Pagani have been working together now for 11 years, the partnership is not about co-branding but also the technical side, as Pagani is often used as a platform to test and develop the latest Pirelli tyres,” he said.

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“Pirelli of course is investing millions of Euros into the development of their product. Their commitment to having a premium product is really serious, and Pagani is a result of their product.”

In a discussion about the value of the right tyre, he told us the durability, safety and performance of Pirelli products were key to the development of his cars, as they were part of the overall design philosophy.

For those wondering, the Italian car maker’s range includes the Huayra, (named after Quechua, the wind god) – for which there are four variants, and the Zonda (named after a hot northerly wind); a vehicle available in some ten different variants.

It’s a brand focused on exclusivity, stunning design, and speed. The performance of their cars is simply outstanding, with a purpose built 6.0-litre Mercedes-AMG V12 twin turbo power plant hidden under the hood.

Capable of 570kW, the engine forms an integral part of a package that features a carbon fibre chassis, aluminium and carbon fibre interior components, and a tasteful, luxurious interior that still focuses on weight reduction for enhanced performance.

The Italian brand has been on-sale in Australia since 2018, when the brand opened its only local dealership in Melbourne, having delivered just five cars since. For Horacio Pagani, those five sales have exceeded his expectations.

“Pagani has a strong partner in Australia, a relationship that goes back over 15 years,” he said. “The current Australian allocation of Pagani [vehicles] has outsold expectations and has currently filled the quota.”

There are no plans to open more Australian dealerships. “As Pagani has a limited amount of production, and Melbourne already hosts five cars, Pagani is unable to supply more at this time.”

There is a new vehicle in the works though, code named the C10. “The new generation model is the C10, with the Zonda being the C8, Huayra the C9, it is scheduled to be announced in 2022.”

The C10 will be bigger, better and faster, he tells us. “Pagani is not changing the philosophy of the brand, the C10 will remain as a limited series, the same as previous versions, which is approximately 40 cars per year.”

The C10 name is yet to be announced, but the 64-year-old told us that right from the beginning, at the sketch phase, he knew what it would be called. “The name will be announced closer to 2022, however it will remain a secret [until then].”

He did give us a small insider clue though that the 2022 Pagani C10 will be named after something new. “The C8 – Zonda and the C9 – Huayra were named after Wind Gods, but the new C10 will have a new origin.”

The hyper car brand remains one of the most profitable in the world under the current climate of small car makers. “Our net profits remain quite hefty, however a large percentage of this profit is reinvested in the company for research and development.”

Each model has a 10 year life cycle. A fact Mr Pagani describes as a little slower than the current industry standard, but he seems okay with that. Humble about the success and popularity of his brand, it’s obvious Horacio Pagani truly loves what he does.

We can’t wait to see what he has in store for the world with the C10.

Pagani Huayra
The Pagani Huayra at the launch of Pirelli P Zero World (Melbourne)
Mick Glenn
Mick Glenn
Mick is a car fanatic, with petrol pumping through his veins. With a deep love for cars, and what makes them tick, Mick likes things that go fast, very fast. But he also appreciates a Sunday cruise in the Rolls...... who are we kidding, he'd drive the wheels off that too.


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