SEMA 2009: Pagani Zonda R Makes North American Debut at SEMA

Colum Wood
by Colum Wood

With the Wheel & Tire section at the 2009 SEMA Show drastically less impressive than in year’s past, Pirelli didn’t shy away and brought out a car that even frightens the Veyron. That’s right, the Italian-made Pagani Zonda… and not just any Zonda, but the Zonda R.

The R model is a track-only version and thanks to a complete carbon fiber body weights just 2,359 lbs. And motivating that chassis is a 6.0-liter V12 engine that makes 750hp and 524 ft-lbs of torque. Pagani claims a 0-60 mph time of just 2.7 seconds.

Getting all that power to the ground is made possible thanks to an ultra-light magnesium Xtrac gearbox, operated by paddle shifters. Gear changes fly by in just 20 milliseconds. To put that in perspective, the current fastest gearbox in a street car is found int he Ferrari F430 Scuderia, which changes gears in 60 ms.

Making the car a true track machine is the fully adjustable suspension, as well as adjustable aerodynamics. Pagani says the Zonda R can be set up to produce as much as 3,307 lbs of downforce – which is, theoretically, enough to to allow the Zonda R to drive upside down and still stick to a surface.

Alternatively, the car can be adapted for high speed, with a top speed rating of 217 mph.

As this is a dedicated track machine, the Zonda R comes equipped with a roll cage and an FIA homolgated racing seats with five-point safety belts.

Other state-of-the-art items include Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes and an inconel exhaust – the same sort of exhaust used of Formula 1 cars.

The Pagani Zonda R will be produced in a limited number with Horacio Pagani signing each vehicle. The cost of ownership is extraordinary, with an MSRP of 1,460,000 Euros or roughly $1.9 million.

And considering that price, please also take note of the idiot we captured in the photo above, giving the carbon fiber fender a good knock with his fist. If you know this guy, please do the same to him…

GALLERY: Pagani Zonda R

Colum Wood
Colum Wood

With AutoGuide from its launch, Colum previously acted as Editor-in-Chief of Modified Luxury & Exotics magazine where he became a certifiable car snob driving supercars like the Koenigsegg CCX and racing down the autobahn in anything over 500 hp. He has won numerous automotive journalism awards including the Best Video Journalism Award in 2014 and 2015 from the Automotive Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC). Colum founded Geared Content Studios, VerticalScope's in-house branded content division and works to find ways to integrate brands organically into content.

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