The Pagani Zonda is a supercar made by Italian car maker Pagani. It debuted in 1999 and continues through the present, with production proceeding at roughly 25 cars per year. As of December, 2005, 60 Zondas had been built. It is a mid-engined 2-seat coupe and convertible. Construction is mainly of carbon fiber.
Some early Zonda engineering was done by Formula One champion, Juan Manuel Fangio. The car was originally to be named for him, the "Fangio F1", but the name was changed upon his death in 1995.
The Zonda is often compared to other supercars such as the Enzo Ferrari, the Koenigsegg CCR, the Lamborghini Murcielago and the Porsche Carrera GT.
1999 Zonda C12
The C12 debuted at the 1999 Geneva Motor Show. It was powered by a 6.0 L (5987 cc) Mercedes-Benz M120 V12 engine and could reach speeds of 185 mph (297 km/h). The engine produces 408 PS (300 kW/402 hp) at 5200 rpm and 421 ft·lbf (571 N·m) at 3800 rpm.
Just five of the original 6.0 L Zondas were built, though it was still available in 2002 when the C12 S debuted. One was used for crash testing, while another was a demonstrator and show car. The rest were delivered to customers over the next three years, priced at US$320,000.
The C12 could accelerate to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 4.2 seconds and hit 100 mph (161 km/h) in 8.2 seconds. Acceleration through the quarter mile was 12.1 seconds at 124 mph (200 km/h). Lateral acceleration on the skidpad was .93g, and the car could brake from 60 mph (97 km/h) in 110 ft (34 m).
1999 Zonda C12 S
The C12 S used a 7.0 L (7010 cc) AMG tuned version of the engine producing 550 PS (404 kW/543 hp). It can accelerate to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 3.7 s, to 100 mph in 9.5 s and complete the quarter mile in 11.9 s. Lateral acceleration on the skidpad is 0.98 g (9.6 m/s2). The car is 10 kg (22 lb) lighter than the normal Zonda C12. Top speed is 220 mph (354 km/h) for the coupe and 215 mph (346 km/h) for the roadster. The car's price tag was US$350,000.
The C12 S features an elongated nose and flaps at the rear for improved aerodynamics. New light clusters and exhausts are also used. Fifteen 7.0 L C12 S cars were produced.
2002 Zonda C12 S 7.3
The 7.3 L (7291 cc) C12 S 7.3 of 2002 used one of the largest V12 engines ever made. The engine was designed and manufactued by Mercedes-Benz AMG. Traction control was added to handle the 555 PS (408 kW/547 hp) and 750 N·m (553 ft·lbf) that this engine produces. As of 2005, only five coupes out of an expected 100 have been produced.
A roadster version is also built, with production limited by the company to 40 examples. As of 2005, nine roadsters had been built. According to Road & Track magazine, three more C12 S 7.3 cars had been built as of June, 2005, but it is unclear whether they were roadsters or coupes. Motor Trend reported that 60 Zondas of all types had been built in their January 2006 issue.
2003 Zonda GR
Development of the Zonda GR started in December, 2002. At this stage the Zonda was nearly four years old, but had yet to be entered in major motorsports. Tom Weickardt, owner of American Viperacing, Toine Hezemans, owner of Carsport Holland, and Paul Kumpen, owner of GLPK, created a new company, Carsport Zonda, to build a racing version. They secured exclusive rights to develop, build and sell competition Zondas from Horacio Pagani, and the first GR was completed at Carsport's facility in Modena within months.
The Zonda GR is based on the Zonda C12 S. It was built on the same carbon fiber chassis, with tube frames in front and back. The bodywork was modified to include front and rear diffusers and louvers for improved aerodynamics. The car was 2 m (6.6 ft) wide, in accordance with the regulations of the FIA and ACO. The car's weight was reduced to 1100 kg (2425 lb), and a new suspension was designed. New wheels and brakes were also specified. The engine was equipped with an enlarged radiator, and the engine and gearbox also have new oil coolers.
The performance of the Zonda GR is well beyond that of the stock car. The car sprints from 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 3.3 seconds and the engine produces around 600 PS (around 440 kW) at 5800 rpm and 580 ft·lbf (786 N·m) of torque at 4300 rpm with a redline increased to 7500 rpm. The added power and improved aerodynamics allow the car to hit 215 mph (346 km/h).
C12 S Monza
The Zonda C12 S Monza debuted at the 2004 Paris Motor Show as a track-day version of the Zonda for private use. Borrowing its appearance cues from the Zonda GR, the Monza included many features which could also be applied to other Zonda models. A dry sump engine tuned to more than 600 PS (more than 440 kW) was used, and the cooling was improved. Modified aerodynamics, including a different wing and front diffuser, allowed greater speed, as did optimized gearing. The car was lighter, with polycarbonate side windows, and an unmuffled exhaust is fitted. The revised interior includes different pedals, steering wheel, and seats, as well as a reinforced roll cage. Larger brakes and a stiffer suspension also improve performance. Finally, an external fire extinguisher is included for safety.
2005 Zonda F (C12 F)
The Zonda C12 F debuted at the 2005 Geneva Motor Show. It is the most extensive reengineering of the Pagani car yet, though it shares much with its predecessors including the 7.3 L V12. Power is increased to 602 PS (443 kW/594 hp) with a special clubsport model producing 650 PS (478 kW/641 hp). The company promises a 3.2 second sprint to 60 mph (97 km/h, a top speed over 350 km/h (218 mph) and it will be the queen in braking from 300 km/h to 0 (186 mph to 0). The Zonda F clubsport has a power to weight ratio of 521 bhp/ton (384 W/kg) . Compare, for example, the Enzo Ferrari which has a power to weight ratio of 483 bhp/ton (356 W/kg).
Production of the Zonda F will be limited to 25 cars, still not US compatible. The next model, due to be unveiled in 2008, will be fully EPA/DOT compatible.
The Zonda F, named after F1 pilot Juan Manuel Fangio, comes with an extra head light and different fog lights at the sides, new bodywork (revised front end, new rear spoiler, more aerodynamic vents all around) that improves the cars aerodynamics and different side mirrors. Further enhancements over the 'S' centre around optional carbon/ceramic brakes developed in conjuction with Brembo, magnesium wheels, inconel titanium exhaust system, hydroformed aluminium intake plenum and a redesigned 'Z preg' weave in the crash structure to improve rigidity and reduce weight.
Zonda Roadster F
The Zonda Roadster F debuted at the 2006 Geneva show. It is similar to the coupe, but with a removable carbon fibre roof and canvas side curtains weighing just 11 lb (5 kg). Production of the Roadster F is suggested at 25 units.
The Roadster F is able to maintain chassis rigidity without any gain in curb weight by eschewing conventional thinking by not strengthening the sills - a process which would have needed more than 35kg of reinforcement. Pagani instead uses racecar thinking, materials and construction techniques, strengthening the firewall structure of the chassis tub together with billet alloy braces that connect the points where the roof rails would have joined. The windscreen is also strengthened for safety reasons. These techniques enable the Roadster to have virtually the same weight as the coupe - 1230kg.