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Pagani Zonda F

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Pagani is a small supercar manufacturer.  It doesn’t have anywhere near the production capacity of more mainstream rivals like Lamborghini and Ferrari.  But that doesn’t slow them down.  The Zonda F, which premiered at the Geneva Auto Show back in 2005 is one of the most desirable supercars on the planet.  Oh yeah, it’s really fast, too.

Let’s get down to it.  The engine is a V12 Mercedes-Benz AMG powerplant that has been modified to become even more powerful than it already was.  The original V12 puts out 550 horsepower.  Pagani outfitted it with a revised induction system, larger intakes, and a hyrdoformed exhaust.  Combine these with a few calibration tweaks and this 7.3-liter behemoth cranks out 620 horsepower, and there’s a clubsport model for those who think that 620 is just too low.  That one produces 650.

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Power is all well and good, but if your car is too heavy, it just won’t have the right effect.  That’s where Pagani has an ace up its sleeve:  the company is one of the best in the world at carbon fiber construction.  Just by looking at the body structure, you can see that the Zonda F was produced by people with an eye for sleek design.  The real beauty comes when you put the car on a scale.  Dry weight of the Zonda F is a mere 2,700 pounds. That’s only about 30 pounds heavier than a 2009 honda Civic.

Okay, it’s powerful and incredibly light, but can it take the corners at insane speeds?  In a word, yes.  Each wheel has independent double A-arm suspension, and the chassis is composed of, you guessed it, carbon fiber.  The chassis also has a chromium-molybdenum (Cr Mo) steel space frames at the front and rear.  Cr Mo steel is very light and has high torsional rigidity, keeping the car flat through tight corners.  Of course, when you go that fast, you also want to be able to stop, to the Zonda features carbon-ceramic brakes, with each disk a diameter of 380 mm (again for comparison, a 2009 Civic’s brake disks are 260 mm).  These disks are tucked inside 19-inch front wheels and 20-inch rear wheels.

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So what does all of this add up to?  0-to-60 mph in 3.5 seconds.  0-to-100 mph in 7.7 seconds.  Top speed of 214 mph.  If you’ve got a spare $800,000 laying around, this is a great way to spend it.

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