We’ve all heard it before — the manual gearbox is going the way of the dodo. Automatic transmission technology is so good nowadays, many of the best performance carmakers in the world are ditching the clutch pedal for paddles.
However, that’s not a problem for the wealthy. Case in point – this one-off Pagani. Its owner spilled enough cash to provoke the Italian automaker into creating a row-your-own version of its inimitable Zonda 760. Not only that, it’s a roadster.
Giving us an intimate look at this unique hypercar is none other than Shmee150, who caught the vehicle on his HD camcorder at Topaz Detailing in London as it underwent a protective film treatment in preparation for delivery.
This thing is beyond gorgeous. The carbon-fiber bodywork is in a mesmerizing deep blue finish, the enormous snorkel that feeds the mid-mounted engine sits just above the seats, and every detail of the aero is correct and accounted for, from the front canards to the broad rear wing.
If you had the money, what car would you bless with a manual transmission? Given an unlimited budget, I’d have to choose the McLaren P1. Something about dropping the clutch on 900 horsepower just sounds so right. I’d also chop the top. I don’t care if it screws up the downforce and drag figures – if you’re going to mess with the best, you might as well go whole hog.
Click past the jump to read about the Pagani Zonda 760 Roadster.
The Zonda was first introduced in 1999, and was supposedly retired years ago. However, several special editions have popped up from time to time, with this 760 Roadster being the latest.
With a 760-horsepower AMG V-12 engine sitting just behind the cockpit, this RWD rocket is composed of spaceship materials like carbon fiber, aluminum and titanium. Top speed is somewhere in the realm of 200 mph, although I’d be interested to see how the roof handles the stress of such speed. Knowing the immaculate attention to detail that Zonda pours into each of its cars, I’m guessing it’ll handle the velocity easily.
Putting the power down is a six-speed manual gearbox. F1 star Lewis Hamilton has a similar set-up in his coupe, but this is the only 760 with unlimited headroom.
As long as demand keeps pouring in, there’s no real reason Pagani should stop making the Zonda in these unique one-offs. I think it’s something we all can benefit from.