A Trip To Pagani Never Fails To Amaze
Photography by: Federico Bajetti
Tasteful details, soul, ingenuity, and fine craftsmanship is sometimes present in modern cars. If you’re able to add art, performance, and quality, the result may be similar to a Pagani Zonda. Cars like this are revered for the incredible amount of performance…but what amazes is the perfect execution of the many details that characterize every inch of the car.
If you’re spending a million anything on a supercar, wouldn’t you want something that is a step above the competition in terms of build? We’re not talking about being the fastest among its peers, but the most human.
Riding in one of these machines lets you experience the soul of a man who had the courage and the perseverance to turn his dreams into reality—a Pagani is the result of an unconditional love for the automobile. Horacio Pagani had the will and the ability to create his own—thriving—supercar company. His cars are his vision and reflect the meaning of the sentence: “If you cannot buy it, build it”.
Inside his factory, everything finds order in its own place, and it’s all beautifully placed on specially crafted shelves. You may think that you may find yourself inside a cold environment, where everything is just “too perfect” and soul-less, but you’d be mistaken. The mechanics work together well, and there’s a calm and relaxed atmosphere you only find in a happy workplace. There’s no stress, no shouts, and seemingly no hurry to deliver the cars. The luminous room enhances the details of the cars being built, and lets you appreciate them even more. How can one not smile when working on a Pagani?
Federico and I were lucky to spend two days at the factory in the company of “the man himself” and Luca Venturi, the Communications Manager for the Factory. We were given the full Pagani experience: not only we would visit the factory, but also take a ride in Horacio’s own Zonda.
After a welcoming coffee at the historic HQ in San Cesario sul Panaro, we had the pleasure to visit the new facility, where they are building the new showroom, museum, and assembly lines.
Ninety percent of production has been transferred to the new facility, while carbo-titanium manufacturing remains in the old facility. The new building, designed by Pagani’s son Leonardo, will be completed by the end of 2015 and was inspired by the typical Italian Piazza.
After a few hours spent gazing at the bare carbon tubs and perfectly-machined aluminum parts, we decide that it’s the perfect time to test ourselves the beauty of these machines. As we step out of the factory, we see a Zonda, waiting for us to take a test ride in it with Andrea Palma, Pagani test driver. He is a seasoned driver who knows these machines quite well.
Riding in a Zonda is a sensory overload: the sound is intoxicating, the acceleration is violent, the smell of fine leather, and the suspension setup similar to a go-kart: the car has no roll while cornering and responds immediately to the driver’s inputs. Despite the extreme cornering capabilities, the car is surprisingly comfortable and well damped. The ride is refined, very GT-like, and the car’s smoothness is enhanced by a properly-calibrated power delivery at low rpm and clutch travel that is friendly to even a novice.
Paganis are cars that are built to be used, and as Venturi pointed out proudly during the day, most customers use them regularly and are not afraid to put mileage on them—as it should be.
During our time there, we were treated more like family guests, rather than just ordinary visitors—an experience we hear is quite normal. The welcoming of the people who worked there, the friendly spirit of Venturi, and the courtesy of Horacio Pagani in taking a ride in his car are part of an experience that won’t be forgotten.
A heartfelt thank you to Horacio Pagani, Luca Venturi, Andrea Palma and Mikael Masoero for the enjoyable time together.