Pagani could never be accused of resting on its laurels; the Huayra was already a spectacular supercar out of the box, made significantly more so with the BC special edition of 2016 and then topped off with the Roadster version last. Surely, we all thought, the Huayra could go little further than a convertible version that produces both more than 2g and in excess of 500kg of downforce.
Seemingly undeterred by the challenge, Pagani has now revealed this: the Imola - an even more powerful, even more focussed Huayra derivative, the Zonda R reimagined if you will. The bare numbers are as mad as expected: the familiar twin-turbo V12 now produces 827hp and 811lb ft, still transferred to the rear wheels through an automated manual gearbox. It weighs just 1,246kg, too, thanks to the use of Carbo-Titanium HP62 G2 and Carbo-Triax HO62, materials also used in the BC Roadster.
The work is so drastic that weight has even been saved through the paint; a technology called Acquarello Light permits the same level of protection as regular paint but with 5kg less material applied in total.
Really, though, paint is paint, and will go unnoticed by many. What won't be missed by any is the dramatic aerodynamic overhaul the Imola has recieved; about which Horacio Pagani said: "Although on the one hand these details may detract from the lines and overall aesthetics of the vehicle, on the other, they also allow improved lap times, ease of driving and especially safety." Aerodynamics talking precedence over everything else? That's how important the Imola's aim of delivering a car "of wholly racing temperament that embodies the maximum expression of Pagani Automobili's track technology" has been.
To prove that yet further, Pagani has tested the Imola for more than 10,000 miles at the circuit from which it borrowed a name. At racing speed, it should be added, so more than enough to deal with a private members' track day. To handle that sort of strain, the Imola features further uprated Brembo ceramic brakes (398mm front, 380mm rear), Pirelli Trofeo R tyres and 'Smart Gas', said to reduce gearshift time and increase "racing character".
All told, then, it looks like the five multi-millionaires who have already reserved their Imolas are in for a treat. They know that, in fact, having been involved in the development process - one said to Horacio Pagani that he "never imagined it would be so easy to drive." Not the verdict we'd have expected, but pleasing to hear. Presumably these Imolas will reach customers at some point this year, then Pagani must surely begin thinking about a world post-Huayra. Can the V12 survive?