by Andrei Tutu, 13th November 2015
The Pagani Zonda Revolucion has recently been clocked at 6:30 minutes while lapping the Nurburgring. Before you memorize the number for later reference and then move on with your business, here’s what you need to know about the significance of this lap time.
First of all, we have to explain that, at the time when this article was published, Pagani hadn’t released any official statement on this. Instead, the info, as well as the image above, which shows the car wearing a decal that mentions the 6:30 time, come from Kris Singh. We are talking about an avid car collector who funds his passion by serving as an executive in the financial world.
With that out of the way, we’ll return to the Nordschleife lap time of the Zonda Revolucion, as we can’t stress the importance of the number enough.
The obvious results of having lapped the ‘Ring in such a hurry is that the Zonda Revolucion now holds the record for the fastest non-street-legal car on the infamous German track.
The hypercar itself
Given the fact that the Zonda Revolucion is based on the Zonda R, the previous holder of the Nurburgring record (6:47.50), means things are only natural.
To get an idea of how far the Revolucion has come from the Zonda F, the last “normal” incarnation of the machine (if we may call it so), we’ll mention its Zonda R base only shares 10 percent of the F’s bits and pieces.
With a price tag of EUR2.2 million ($2.36M) plus taxes, the Revolucion tips the scales at a hardly believable 2,359 lbs (1.070 kg), while its AMG-developed naturally aspirated 6.0-liter V12 places 800 hp at the mercy of the driver’s right foot.
But enough with the classic power-to-weight ratio numbers, it’s time to mention the active parts of this Zonda. Pagani has gifted the Revolucion with an F1-inspired Drag Reduction System (DRS), with this active aero development making a world of a difference and allowing the driver to choose the desired configuration.
Traction control? Sure, this track-confined Italian has it, but it won’t limit you. Not when the Bosch-supplied system comes with twelve settings.
What does the Zonda Revolucion’s record mean?
One of the most difficult questions you can ask an automotive aficionado nowadays has to do with the perfect era for go-fast hypercars.
On the one hand, you have the deliciously analogue speeding machines of old, many of which are no longer fast enough. On the other hand, the last few years have brought us futuristic contraptions that risk altering the connection to their drivers by relying heavily on hybrid powertrains and tons of gadgets.
Well, the Zonda Revolucion seems to be just right. And it probably marks the end of an era. So if you’re looking to buy a supercar and hold on to it for the rest of your life, you’d better hurry. We’re getting fewer cars worthy of such praise every year.
With the Revolucion, Pagani demonstrates that a development that’s over 15 years old and doesn’t come from a major carmaker can be better than much newer platforms. Which brings us to the tons of marketing mumbo-jumbo that surround platform development in the automotive world.
There are many companies which allow their platforms to age ungracefully, fuelling the misconception that newer is always better. It’s enough to look at the military world, where tanks and aircrafts remain in service for decades, relying on updates alone. And it’s not like you don’t need the best vehicles around when you’re going to war.
When it comes to the sensitive financial side of the equation, the Zonda Revolucion is one of those track cars that make the genre relevant. For one thing, nobody can come up to you and explain you can grab a faster circuit toy for much less money.
Then there’s the sheer insanity of the time. Comparing the 6:30 of the Pagani Zonda with the 6:11 absolute Nurburgring record (in the current 12.92-mile track configuration) reveals that a machine that started out in life as a production vehicle has managed to come extremely close to the time set by the fastest racing car in Porsche’s history.
We’re talking about the Porsche 956, which managed to lap the ‘Ring in 6:11.13 during the 1983 1,000 km Nurburgring endurance race. While that Porsche prototype was basically the opposite of a human’s conservation instinct, it was driven by a man who wasn’t aware of the notion - Stefan Bellof. Sure, it took the non-racing car world three decades to come close to the racing performance mentioned above, but to be able to come close to Bellof’s stunning lap is one memorable feat.
A feat that may not be possible to achieve in the future. You see, the asphalt on the ‘Ring has already experienced certain changes over the years, but the track "layout" will be changed next year. Following a VLN racing crash that killed a spectator, the 1,640-foot area around Flugplatz will be deprived of its five bumps. Less air time may be safer, but the change will also remove a lot of the spectacle, the sheer reason why one enters the Green Hell. It remains to be seen how this change will affect lap times.
Despite the important differences between Koenigsegg and Pagani, the two are often compared. Well, while the Swedes still haven’t managed to set a lap time in their One:1 halo car, Pagani has just written an important page in the automotive history book.
Pagani Zonda Revolucion Sets Nurburgring Record for Track Cars. Here?s What the 6:30 Time Means - autoevolution