For many people, a car is an art form. Each line and radius meeting the other to create a shape so simple and yet complex it captures the spectator’s attention with a single glance. According to en.oxforddictionaries.com, Art is defined as “The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination…producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power.” You see, if high performance cars weren’t a form of art, why do we suddenly feel filled with power and primal energies at the sight of a Lamborghini? What is it about a Ferrari 458 that makes us hunger for adventure? And how is it that a Rolls Royce Phantom’s interior truly makes us feel as if we belong on Wall Street?
Other motor enthusiasts don’t get so caught up on the visuals. For them, a high-performance car is a vehicle that can push through the physical boundaries that limit the human body, a chance to experience 0-60mph acceleration so quick it feels as if your organs are being pressed back against your seat. Sitting behind the wheel of a hypercar is an opportunity to reach speeds you probably won’t get to anywhere else. Cornering in cars like this might as well be a slap in the face of disaster, moving so quick a single wrong adjustment could peel your vehicle from the road. These car lovers are drivers. The ones who, as kids, didn’t care what color the rollercoaster was painted, they only wanted to know how tall the initial drop was.
Somewhere between these two extremes we find a man named Horacio Pagani. Yes. That Pagani. A car that moves at breakneck speed, and looks absolutely gorgeous all the while. One of Horacio’s more recent inventions, the Huayra BC, features a chassis made entirely of an exotic carbon fiber infused with titanium. The chassis houses a Mercedes-AMG 6.0-liter, twin-turbo V12 that puts out nearly 800 horsepower. Even more astonishing is the fact that the entire car only weighs in at 2,685 lbs (1,218 kg!) If the specifications aren’t enough to make your jaw drop, the vehicle’s appearance will. The name “Huayra” comes from Huayra Tata, an ancient god of winds found in Mythology around Argentina, Horacio’s homeland. This name fits the car perfectly, considering it looks like the carbo-titanium body of the car was shaped by the wind itself.
“Ancient Aymara legends tell us of Huayra Tata, god of the wind who commands the breezes, the winds and the snowstorms that invade the mountains, the cliffs and the hills of the Andean highlands.”
So how does a vehicle that takes both style and physics to such an extreme come to be? For Mr. Pagani, his work was years in the making (Like, seriously. Since the day he was born.) Horacio credits much of his success to Leonardo Da Vince. Its probable that he was introduced to the works and philosophies of Da Vince as a young boy by his mother, a painter.
“I hope that our concept of working is actually in the Leonardo Da Vinci Tradition, when art and science come together.
As he grew, Horacio developed a love of cars, a common ground where art and science come together. Young Horacio began carving toy cars out of wood and presenting them to his friends, and, before long was designing real working race cars of his own. But these race cars weren’t the Paganis we know today, those came later. With his passion for cars still growing, Horacio took every opportunity he could to learn better the world of mechanics and engineering. At 18 years old, he joined the course of Industrial Design at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the National University of La Plata, and later on, Mechanical Engineering at the National University of Rosario. All of this seemed to fuel (no pun intended) Horacio’s interests even more. Eventually Mr. Pagani was hired by none other than Lamborghini to help with projects including the LM series and the Lamborghini Countach. During his time with Lamborghini, Horacio familiarized himself with a revolutionary light-weight material NASA had only recently begun using. That material was Carbon Fiber. As he perfected the process of building automobile parts from carbon fiber, Horacio picked up work from other brands including; Ferrari’s Formula 1 team, and Aprilia Motorcycles. Over time Mr. Pagani’s work with Lamborghini slowed to a stop, giving him time to design his own supercar, the Pagani C12. Horacio’s new car was a brilliant combination of his achievements as an engineer woven together with his creative artist’s side. A modern Da Vince Masterpiece.
“The shape had to be sensual, the wheel arches should recall a woman’s bosoms, the rear bonnet the hips. Inside, the seats would be shaped like an inverted pyramid to wrap around the shoulders, giving a sense of power to the man, and protection to the woman.”
Horacio’s success outlived the C12 when he released his Zonda S, in the year 2000. In fact, every vehicle Pagani’s released since the C12 has been a smashing hit, each car more technologically advanced than the last, yet just as timeless.
Horacio Pagani is, without a doubt, fluent in both the Art of Science, and the Science of Art.
“To develop a complete mind: Study the science of art; Study the art of science. Learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.”
-Leonardo Da Vince