Pagani Zonda’s Replacement Makes Us Think

Pagani Zonda

Pagani Zonda

The Pagani Zonda is one of those cars.

It’s the kind of car that might as well exist only in dreams, as a fairytale chariot most humans will never have the pleasure of driving. Cars like Zondas (and Veyrons) might as well exist on the same level as unicorns, because to the vast majority of us, we’ll never see one (unless Conan dresses one up like a mouse out of spite.)

So when news comes that Pagani is discontinuing the Zonda and replacing it with something called the C9, we’re both excited and grief-stricken. Excited because we’ll have something new to fantasize about, sad because the Zonda will cease to exist.

But check out some of the specs that Top Gear has reported on the C9. It will be powered:

by AMG’s 6.0-litre V12 putting out 690bhp and 737lb ft of torque – figures very close to Mercedes’ own SL65 Black Edition. Expect Pagani to massage the twin-turbo engine to its own exacting specifications, however.

The C9 will be far more than an updated Zonda, says Pagani. He promises a ‘brand new car from concept, weight distribution, materials and dynamics’, adding that the C9 has 3,770 new parts.

The chassis will be constructed of carbon titanium, with bespoke Pirelli tyres and Bosch electronics. Pagani hopes to build around 40 C9s per year, with each car costing nearly £800,000.

That’s almost $1.3 million. For that price, I’ll bet someone could buy a living unicorn, too. Though I’d rather have the Pagani.

Reading about a carbon titanium chassis and twin-turbo engine made me think, though, about what I really expect in a car. Obviously the Zonda isn’t just about transportation… it’s about thrill and experiencing the limits of man-made machines. But for most of us, cars are about comfort, convenience, reliability, and maybe a little fun.

When I buy a new car to use as a daily driver, I have certain expectations that must be met. Carbon titanium isn’t one of them. But cruise control is. So are air conditioning, alloy wheels, AWD/4WD, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and at least a little performance zest.

Some folks live in a dream world, and that’s why Pagani exists. For the rest of us, our expectations are a little lower. We want to know:

What features/options do you expect when buying a new car? Are you pickier than I am? For some reason I can’t live without a leather steering wheel.


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  1. It will certainly insure the value of the Zondas continues to appreciate.
    As for options, cruise control isn’t even on my list. A little “performance zest”, could you possibly have a more meaningless term? Standard performance has changed radically in the past 20 years.
    You want something that does 0-60 in 8 seconds, 6, 5? What do you consider zest? I consider long distance driving comfort.
    As for wheels, whatever option is lightest.

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