2023 Pagani Utopia

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2023 Pagani Utopia First Look Review: Composing The Perfect Third Symphony

With a name like Utopia, Pagani's third hypercar immediately conjures images of perfection, and the headlines seemingly write themselves. But to dismiss the Pagani Utopia supercar, nay, hypercar, as something that can be described by a single word would be to do it no justice whatsoever.

The Utopia is Horacio Pagani's Third Symphony - his third unique vehicle in the history of the Pagani brand. And much like Beethoven's Third Symphony, Eroica, which was described as the musical depiction of what being alive meant to Beethoven, the Utopia embodies the core tenets of Horacio Pagani's feelings about automotive beauty, engagement, and performance. Fitting, then, that Horacio Pagani wrote and played the opening notes to a classical composition that was played by the Symphony Orchestra of the Milan Conservatory at the Pagani Utopia's live unveiling.

More than six years in the making, the Utopia seamlessly blends the past, present, and future of Pagani's product portfolio into one magnificent hypercar, replete with an AMG-built twin-turbo V12, a dogleg gated manual gearbox, and all the attention to detail one expects from a Pagani. This is more than just a third act, a successor to the Pagani Zonda and Huayra; this is the soul of Pagani, the man, in physical form.

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When is the 2023 Pagani Utopia Coming out?

Unlike a typical automobile, the 2023 Pagani Utopia doesn't have a firm release date. Limited to just 99 units, and with Pagani considering itself more an atelier than an automaker - justifying a maximum production capacity of 50 vehicles per year - the first Utopia models are likely to be delivered globally at the start of 2023, and in the USA shortly thereafter.

2023 Pagani Utopia Price and Competition

If you have to ask, you can't afford it. And if you're only asking now, you're already too late. The price of the 2023 Pagani Utopia is a frankly obscene $2.5 million. But, each of the 99 units of the Utopia's production run is spoken for already, and those who collect such mechanical artworks are unlikely to sell anytime soon.

As for its rivals, the Utopia exists in the upper echelons of automotive stardom in which connoisseurs do not choose one or the other but rather purchase any and all machines that tickle their fancy. It seems natural to draw comparison between this and the recently-revealed Koenigsegg CC850, but to our minds, the closest rival is the Gordon Murray Automotive T.50. No other hypercar melds an analog experience with such high performance and such perfect design ethos. Only the T.50, and possibly its T.33 sibling, can comprehensibly compare as the perfect blend of beauty and science.

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New Pagani Utopia Exterior and Colors

Instantly identifiable as a Pagani and yet utterly unique in its own right, the exterior of the Pagani Utopia is the culmination of more than six years, four thousand sketches, ten scale models, one wind tunnel model, two 1:1 scale models, and eight complete prototypes.

Being mid-engined with a vast 12-cylinder power plant behind the cockpit, the Utopia embodies a cab-forward stance and the duality of perfect simplicity and supreme aerodynamic advancement in its design. Citing inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci's artistry and anatomical obsession and classic designs like the aerodynamic form of a 1950's Vespa headlight, the form of the Utopia is contemporary and timeless.

The details include carbon fiber bodywork manufactured from a newly developed weave that reduces weight, increases stiffness by 38%, and looks and feels sublime. Instead of overwrought surfaces and active wings, Pagani relies on form and function coexisting in their most simple forms. The open front end houses radiators and intercoolers, visible within the gaping apertures of the bodywork, while at the rear, the floating taillights are inspired by afterburners, floating within open panels that actively channel airflow to enhance performance.

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Prominent wheel arches trigger thoughts of 1950s race cars, while a single, horizontal shoulder line and high-mounted door sills - the Utopia features butterfly doors instead of gullwing items - embody the simplicity of the Utopia. The aerodynamic details are subtle, like small kinks in the edge of the floor to guide air where it needs to be, while the quartet of tailpipes - a Pagani signature - are housed centrally to a floating ellipse at the rear of the car with the key active aerodynamic components in the upper edge.

The shoulders of the Utopia feature air intakes that, to the eyes of this writer, evoke the Sydney Opera House's swooping architecture, while the wing mirrors combine organic shapes with top-hung struts that improve aerodynamics and aesthetics. Defined as much by negative spaces as it is by positive ones, the Utopia's glasshouse comprises a massive, curved windscreen, frameless side windows, twin glass roof panels, and a slender rear windscreen, while a similar piece of screenwork exposes the V12 aft of the driver.

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The wheels are remarkable. Staggered at 21 and 22 inches front and rear, they appear much smaller by virtue of their 10-spoke forged central element, surrounded by turbine-shaped extractors made of carbon fiber that not only give the Utopia the appearance of a vintage race car's high-profile tires but actively draw heat away from the brakes. Speaking of, the brake calipers are both visually stunning and fully functional and lightweight in their design.

Lastly, the finest details of all. The front and rear clamshells of the new Pagani Utopia coupe are fastened shut by ornate leather straps, providing the perfect soft touch to an otherwise sculpturally beautiful design.

As for the colors available on the Pagani Utopia, when you're operating at this level of exclusivity, what you want is what you get, so while the launch car is depicted in a satin-finish eggshell hue, prospective buyers can choose any color they want.

Pagani Utopia Dimensions

Pagani hasn't yet published the dimensions of the 2023 Utopia, but it will by no means be considered a compact sports car. Based on a similar architecture to the Huayra, the overall proportions will likely remain similar. For reference, that car has a length of 181 inches, a width of 80.2 inches, and a wheelbase measuring 110 inches. However, with a dry weight of 2,822 lbs, the Pagani Utopia is 154 lbs lighter than the standard Huayra.

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Pagani Utopia Engine and Performance

The heart of the Pagani Utopia is a 6.0-liter V12 engine with two turbos, manufactured for the company by none other than Mercedes-AMG. Terms like "all-wheel drive" and "hybridization" are notably absent from the Utopia's arsenal, relying solely on combustion to deliver 852 horsepower and 811 lb-ft of torque to the rear axle. The former arrives at 6,000 rpm (the limited arrives at 6,700), while the latter is available across a broad range from 2,800-5,900 rpm.

Simplicity, lightness, and the pleasure of driving were the core criteria provided by Pagani's most loyal clients for the development of the Utopia, which is why Horacio Pagani bucked the trend of rapid-fire dual-clutch automatic transmissions and instead fitted the Utopia with a seven-speed gated manual gearbox, or an automated unit sourced from Xtrac.

In a subtle dig at Koenigsegg, Pagani notes that the manual could not be a 'virtual' one and that it had to be real. "The nature of the road and the mood of the moment" are integral to how each shift feels and behaves, according to the automaker, and showcases Pagani's dedication to making the Utopia an experiential car rather than a numbers-chaser.

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Perhaps this focus on feeling is why there are no 0-60 claims or top speeds published - although one can assume sub-three seconds and upwards of 220 mph based on power and weight alone.

Central to harnessing this power are the suspension, braking, and adhesion systems. At each corner, forged aluminum alloy double wishbones and inboard coil springs derived from the Huayra R keep the tires in contact with the road, assisted by electronically controlled shock absorbers. These elements force the Pirelli P-Zero Corsa tires - measuring 263/35 up front and 325/30 at the rear - to the road surface, while the electro-mechanical differential at the rear of the car apportions the monumental torque.

When the time comes to slow down, Brembo-supplied brakes do the heavy lifting. Carbon ceramic discs are found at each corner (16.1 inches in front and 15.4 inches at the rear) with inboard-mounted monolithic calipers designed in a lightweight fashion. Six pistons up front and four at the rear, along with heat extraction from the carbon fiber wheel design, ensure fade-free stopping.

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Gas Mileage/Range

No single buyer of the 99-strong production run of Utopia coupes exists that will give a damn about how much or little fuel it consumes. But they can rest assured that it is globally homologated and complies with even the strictest emissions regulations like those in California. The 6.0-liter twin-turbo V12 is a thirsty beast, and if the Huayra is any indication, one can expect in the region of 13 mpg combined.

Pagani Utopia Interior and Cargo

Unfurl the leather straps of the rear carbon fiber clamshell, and you not only expose the chromoly tubular subframes and V12 engine, but a pair of carbon fiber storage bins, each secured by their own rich leather strap and buckle. Pagani has not confirmed how much cargo space the Utopia has in total, but a bespoke set of Pagani luggage will fit neatly for a weekend away for you and the missus on the French Riviera.

The interior of the Pagani Utopia seats two in something that is equal parts mechanical and organically beautiful. As we've become accustomed to from Pagani in the years gone by, each and every surface, toggle, switch, and dial is an ornate work of art. The instrumentation is analog, with both the speedometer and tachometer revealing portions of their mechanism in the same fashion as a horologist might craft the exposed mechanism of a fine chronograph. Between these dials lives a digital display, the only one to be found in the Utopia's cabin and one reserved solely for driver information.

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There is no central infotainment screen - something that will almost certainly not stand the test of time - where instead, you'll find tactile toggle-like switchgear, a trio of rotary knobs for climate control, and a quartet of dials dedicated to boost pressure, oil pressure, oil temperature, and coolant temperature. Beneath this all, a prominent red engine start-stop button stands out. Each and every element is both tactile and visually arresting, bathed in a soft glow that envelops the entirety of the cabin.

The two seats are artful sculptures with finely stitched leather that offsets the exposed carbon fiber structure, but these are secondary to the most crucial interaction points: the steering wheel, pedals, and gated manual shifter. The steering wheel is milled from a single block of aluminum, finished in key areas with rich leather, while the pedals have also been machined from a single piece of lightweight metal. The shifter - a dogleg with seven forward speeds, is a sophisticated mechanical piece of mechanized art with an exposed linkage standing proud of the center console.

The finest of details has been obsessed over, and the result is nothing short of spectacular. Art? Automobile? Technological masterpiece? The Pagani Utopia lies somewhere between all three.

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