New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

Pagani claims new ‘Ring record

2010-07-01 08:39

Is this a road or track car? Does it really matter? Pagani’s Zonda R, the new king of the ‘Ring.

Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Pagani
Engine 6l V12
Power 551kW @ 7 500r/min
Torque 710Nm @ 5 700r/min
Transmission Six-speed sequencial
Zero To Hundred 2.7 sec
Top Speed 374km/h
Weight 1 070kg
Front Suspension Double wishbones, pull-rod helical springs
Rear Suspension Double wishbones, pull-rod helical springs
Another week, another Nurburgring lap record claim of some sort.

Despite very little standardisation underpinning most of the lap record claims, ‘Ring times are trumpeted as undisputable points of reference.

In most arguments regarding the performance superiority of one product over another, a 'Ring time if often cited as the deciding factor.
Such is the fabled reputation of the ‘Ring.

Back in April, Ferrari claimed it had set a new lap record courtesy of the company’s 599XX ‘rolling laboratory’.

The 599XX was powered by a 536kW 6l V12, featured a raft of aerodynamics aids and despite providing much of technical development gifting us the 599 GTO – hardly qualified as a production car.

Ferrari’s time around the ‘Ring with its 599XX was 6:58, a whisper under seven minutes.

Modenese neighbours only, not friends

Now Ferrari’s lower volume, but by no means less famous, neighbour Pagani says it has bested the 599XX’s time by a little more than ten seconds after a flying lap on Tuesday.

Despite practically being out of production (discounting an infinite supply of last gasp special edition models) Pagani’s Zonda is now believed to be the fastest car (a loose term) ever to navigate the Nurburgring’s 154 corners.

A Pagani Zonda R, piloted by German racer Marc Basseng (32), managed to lap the Nordschleife in a time of 6:47 thanks to its carbon-fibre construction and 551kW narrow-angle 6l AMG V12.

Amazingly Basseng believes the Zonda R could possibly trim another eight seconds off its time.

Basseng has a thing for hustling Italian supercars around the Nurburgring, previously posting times for Maserati (MC12) and Ferrari (Enzo).

In terms of outright pace the Zonda R’s 6:47 time bests Radical’s SR8 LM lap record (negligibly quicker than the 599XX) by a second. The Italian car can also claim to be far closer to a road-going vehicle than the British lightweight racer.

Amazingly the Zonda R is now only 36 seconds adrift of the late Stefan Bellof’s all-time Nurburgring record pace of 6:11, recorded driving a Porsche 956 Group C racer back in 1983.

Argentine engineering genius Horacio Pagani must be quite chuffed with himself as he refines the last technical details of his Zonda replacement – the C9. We expect Horacio's Modenese automotive engineering neighbour, the one with the F1 racing team, is slightly less impressed.


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