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Pagani Huayra replaces Zonda, redefines awesome

We've got to doff our caps to Pagani. The Italian sports car company has grabbed the awesomeness knob with both hands and cranked it all the way up to 'amazeballs' with its new Huayra.

Rory Reid
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We've got to doff our caps to Pagani. The Italian sports car company has grabbed the awesomeness dial with both hands and cranked it all the way up to 'amazeballs' with its new Huayra supercar.

The car, named after the Andean Aymara people's god of wind, Huayra Tata, is the replacement for the iconic Pagani Zonda. It's hardly surprising, therefore, that the two share DNA. Both have similar silhouettes, headlamps, centrally mounted quad exhausts and are powered by enormous V12 engines supplied by Mercedes-Benz.

The Huayra (pronounced "hu-aye-rah") trades the 7-litre naturally aspirated engine found in the Zonda for a 6-litre unit that's assisted by two turbochargers. This, we're reliably informed, will supply 690bhp and 1,000Nm of torque, which is enough for a toe-curling 0-60mph time of 3.5 seconds and a top speed in excess of 230mph.

Pagani has ditched the wings and spoilers that kept the Zonda glued to the floor in favour of four individually moveable flaps --- one on each corner of the car -- that adjust like ailerons on a plane. When travelling on a long straight, they're deployed at a relatively shallow angle that doesn't restrict the car's straight-line pace. When cornering, the flaps protrude at a more conspicuous angle, providing better downforce.

Pagani says the behavior of the flaps is managed by a dedicated control unit that is fed information from the ABS braking system and the car's engine control unit (ECU). These pass information about the Huayra's speed, yaw rate, lateral acceleration, steering angle and throttle position, all of which helps determine the angle of the flaps.

Plenty of thought has gone into the Huayra's interior. The centre console is machined from one solid block of aluminium -- MacBook-style -- while the remainder of the cockpit is a veritable orgy of leather latches, aircraft-style toggle switches and Swiss watch-inspired instruments.

There are plenty of gadgets, too. The car features a centrally mounted multi-function display that controls the audio functions, satellite navigation and Bluetooth phone systems.

At £850,000, the Huayra doesn't come cheap, but we're guessing Pagani will have no shortage of customers if this thing really does deliver on its performance promises. Have a gander at the pictures in our photo gallery and let us know what you think in the comments below.

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