From the dream of a single man, and with the help of a few collaborators, Pagani Automibili has since grown to include 177 enthusiasts and artisans, all driven by the same passion that birthed the Zonda. Each car to come out of the Modena-based atelier is a hand-built work of art, combining the science of speed with the artistry of the human soul, a testament to the original spirit of the very first Zonda.
Coming from a family of bakers in Argentina, Mr. Horacio Pagani came from humble beginnings, a far cry from where he currently is now and from his automotive creations bearing his name. With many of his creations utilizing carbon fiber, titanium, and even a mix of both, creatively called carbotanium, Mr. Horacio Pagani has a strong fascination with materials.
The story of his fascination with carbon fiber began when he worked at Lamborghini, being involved in the Countach Evoluzione project, a one-off of the iconic Countach. This is when he started his interest in carbon fiber. For the carbon fiber loom to be created, an autoclave was needed, but when he asked Lamborghini’s managers at the time about it, they refused. Lamborghini’s managers argued that if Ferrari did not have such equipment, they also do not need one. Horacio Pagani then borrowed money on his own to buy the autoclave and later parted ways with Lamborghini, eventually forming the company bearing his name in 1992.
As Horacio Pagani sets foot in Manila, he does so in the wake of an important milestone. The founder of Pagani Automibili is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the brand’s first ever commercial release, the Zonda C12. Seven years after he founded his company, the Zonda C12 debuted at the 1999 Geneva International Motor Show. It was unlike any other car at the time it was introduced. The Zonda C12 used F1 technology and the science of space rocketry, rightfully earning it the status of hypercar and outclassing all other supercars.
Still, the Zonda wasn’t just about specs alone. What truly set it apart was the extreme attention that Horacio Pagani himself put into every detail. A self-taught car designer, Pagani took seven years to develop the Zonda, combining emotion and functionality, art and science at each step of the way. It was not just a festival of numbers and specifications, it was a marriage between technology and artisanal craftsmanship.
Even at 20 years old, the Zonda remains one of the most iconic cars ever made. And in this year’s Geneva International Motor Show, Pagani presented the completely restored chassis of the very first Zonda ever made. The Zonda ended its production run in 2017, but Pagani’s follow-up offering, the Huayra, has found just as much success and is likewise a celebrated piece of hypercar history.
Now, I’m sure many of us had the vision of creating our own automotive company, as well as our own cars when we were kids, but as we grew up, most of our dreams became less visionary and more ordinary. If you, dear reader, still have that wacky dream of forming your own automobile company with your own designs and engineering even at this age that you’re mature enough to realize the difference between fantasy and reality, then I salute you. May Mr. Horacio Pagani’s humble beginnings and bold visions inspire you to pursue your wildest dreams in the same way as us when we had a lengthy roundtable with the founder himself. Maybe, just maybe, you might be the one who has the vision and the motivation to bring the Philippines into the world’s automotive stage.
Autohub Group would also like to remind the public that they are the official seller and distributor of Pagani in the Philippines. “We first met him back in 2015 at Shanghai China, then we visited PAGANI in Modena, Italy in November 2015, then in Hong Kong (and) Macau 2018 for the Macau Grand Prix. He’s a really humble guy considering what he did for Pagani and to the whole automobile industry. And now he’s finally here. I’m looking forward to see(ing) Paganis in the Philippine roads very soon,” says Autohub Group President Willy Tee Ten.