Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

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Mac47
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Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by Mac47 » Tue Jul 29, 2014 11:14 am

I made a calculated decision that despite being in the Philippines until 2016, I could not afford to wait on the Pagani Huayra by AUTOart.

My reasons were three-fold: first, having narrowed my collection to Koenigsegg and Pagani, this seemed to me to be a piece not to be missed. Second, when I sold my other diecast in 2012, including many relatively rare AUTOart, Kyosho, and Hot Wheels Elite pieces (F40, 512 TR, 288 GTO, Miura P400, Vector W8, Lotec Sirius, Maserati MC12, two Veyron showcars and a Bleu Centenaire), every last one of them sold for more than I had paid for it. So it is easy to justify buying an AUTOart signature model now, in the expectation that I will be able to sell it later at a profit if need be.

A third reason is this: the Huayra is the epitome of automobile design-as-art. It is the ripe fruit of what Horacio Pagani calls "manual intellectuality". The real-life (1:1) car is full of detailed touches that evoke the jewellers' craftsmanship of Faberge eggs and Swiss watches.



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Pagani's sketches for the Huayra, illustrating the design's influences from the human eye and from jet aircraft.

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Steampunk meets H.R. Giger aesthetics in the exposed shift linkage and sculptured carbon framework of the Huayra's parking brake.

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Huayra from above.

The Huayra had the difficult job of following up the Zonda, which has become a modern classic distinguished by its craftsmanship. By most auto journalists' accounts, it has done that and then some. It is a car full of interesting hinges and openings: when every part stands open, the Huayra looks like a Decepticon in the middle of transformation.

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That huge amount of opening parts, above all else, piqued my curiosity. Could AUTOart capture that artistry and that feeling in a 1:18 diecast?

The answer is a resounding yes.

PACKAGING

It has been more than a year since I have taken delivery of a new diecast. What a treat this one was. There is the usual AUTOart Signature box, with its Pagani logo and Huayra lettering, all wrapped in a plastic sleeve. The model is secured inside a styrofoam sarcophagus, with the side mirrors and a tiny screwdriver in a separate bag. AUTOart ships the Huayra with its boot and bonnet fastened by tiny screws, the better to protect them from flapping around during shipping. These screws were easily removed with the supplied and magnetized screwdriver.

Another prudent decision was the packaging of the side mirrors in a separate plastic bag in order to protect their fragile curving stalks from breaking off from the body of the car. And AUTOart, knowing that your fingers are probably not honed to a pitch of precise dexterity by years of Chinese calligraphy and chopsticks, have provided a spare pair of mirrors in case you break one. (I did not.)

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Missing this time are the microfibre dusting cloth and the magnifying glass-cum-toothpick that have accompanied other Signature models.

AUTOart includes a brochure detailing the features of the model, illustrated with an exploded view of all the 672 pieces. The piece-count is staggering for a 1:18 diecast of a modern supercar: the Zonda R, AUTOart's previous tour de force, had 658 pieces. (Models of vintage cars by companies like Exoto and CMC have piece counts in the 900+ range, but vintage cars offer many more opportunities for fine detail in a scale replica.)

There is a serialized certificate of authenticity, as with every other Signature model since the Veyron.

Finally, AUTOart includes illustrated advice — as they had with the CCX, Carrera GT, and Zonda R. In this case, it tells the owner how to fit the mirrors and how to tighten the hinge screws if the doors or bonnet become droopy.

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EXTERIOR AND CASTING

The Huayra is a very solid model, weighing far more than the Zonda, the CCX, or even the hefty Veyron. All the parts that should be diecast, are diecast: the active-aero flaps, the boot and bonnet, the doors. The shape and stance are perfect. The shutlines around the doors are ultra-tight, which is all the more impressive because the doors must meet up with four different other panels (bonnet, boot, windshield, and door sill) when closed. I have seen complaints of misaligned wheel arches on some Huayras, but mine was perfect in this regard.

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My only minor complaint is the slightly large panel gap or shutline on the leading edge of the front bootlid (not actually a boot at all, since there is no storage there), but inspection of photos of the 1:1 has persuaded me that some of this is simply due to the larger gap for the aero flaps.

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The vents and air intakes are fully perforated, and they, like the rear of the car, are fitted with realistic mesh. Not for AUTOart the blacked out solid "holes" of the early 2000s or even the tampoed faux-intakes of the early Diablo VT model.

Score: 9.5/10


ARTICULATED FEATURES

There is only one missed opportunity here: the Huayra's fuel filler cap does not open. Everything else works. And here's a photo of everything open:

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The doors are held up by dual working dampers, and snap closed with a snug fit. They have to be opened completely in order to swing up the bonnet.

The boot and bonnet lids swing open on central scissor hinges, not doglegs or corner hinges. This is a a real challenge for the modeller, but AUTOart has met it. I suspect these hinges will be prone to loosening over time — hence AUTOart's instructions about how to tighten them with the included screwdriver.

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The aero flaps lift up, and stay in position on their tight hinges.

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The luggage compartments in the car's haunches open and disclose plastic replicas of the Huayra's fitted luggage. These are similar in detail and material to those included with the BBR Ferrari Enzo or AUTOart McLaren F1. There are three pieces of luggage in the left side compartment, and one in the right:

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Score: 9.5/10


PAINT

I opted for the bronze colorway, which is two-tone, with the lower skirts of the car being finished in bare carbon fibre. The weave of the carbon fibre is well replicated, as on the CCX and Zonda R, with a slight silver strand perceptible. But as with those earlier efforts, the Huayra's carbon weave is larger than 1:18 scale should have dictated. This is a trade-off: too small and to scale, and the beautiful pattern won't be visible. And it is beautiful, with slight silver strand and a slight darker strand both perceptible, and woven throughout, unlike some other manufacturers who simply cover their models in thin grey stripes and call it carbon fibre.

There is a lot of it. The front splitter and grille, the side sills, the dash and inside the front suspension cover; on the steering wheel, glove box, and framework for the shifter and parking brake; on the roof panel between the door hinges. It is everywhere, and everywhere uniform and well applied.

I don't know how AUTOart makes all this carbon fibre happen, but whoever does it has done an awesome job of it.

As for the bronze paint, it is beautiful. No bubbling, no orangepeel. Just a perfect application of a mesmerizing metallic bronze.

Score: 10/10


TAMPOS AND DECORATIONS

The car features "Huayra" badging on the back, metallic Pagani logos on the vents behind the front wheels, and on the hinge-cover of the windshield wiper, and Horacio's signature on the flanks ahead of the rear wheels. All are perfectly replicated and convincing. There is also "Pagani" lettering stenciled on the brake calipers.

Score: 10/10

WHEELS, TIRES, BRAKES

Nothing wrong with the wheels: they are unremarkable, but correct, including a valve stem for inflation. The four individual wheels have been cast uniquely, since their spiralling design means they are not interchangeable with each other. The brake rotors turn through the calipers. Everything is independently sprung with realistic gold-colored suspension arms.

The tires are of AUTOart's usual nice material, soft to the touch, and show the correct tread pattern. I deduct half a point for the lack of branding or lettering on the wheels.

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Score: 9.5/10

ENGINE AND ENGINE BAY

The Huayra's twin-turbo 6.0 L V12 ("M158") is based on the Mercedes-Benz SL600's M275, and produces 720 horsepower (537 kW)[1] and 1,000 N·m (740 lb·ft) of torque. AMG builds this engine specifically for Pagani Automobili. Most journalists have lamented the loss of the Zonda's naturally-aspirated V12, an engine which AUTOart replicated brilliantly for its Zonda R in the Signature series. But the Huayra's powerplant has its own charms, albeit not so nakedly displayed as in the R, from which the entire rear cover can be removed.

Here's a reminder of the Zonda R's engine, powder-white exhaust lines, and fully articulated avional suspension:

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And here's the Huayra's more demure, less exhibitionist display:

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Note especially, lurking at the rear, the violet and blue exhaust:

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There's a lot to take in while poking around this engine bay: coiled yellow springs, hinged gold suspension arms, various photoetch parts, hoses and lines, and full metal cross-struts attached with screws.

The Huayra may not have given AUTOart as much to show off as the Zonda did, but what it has, they rendered well.

Score: 10/10


INTERIOR

Here we must lament a little for the lack of natural tan calf upholstery, as seen in most photos of the Huayra's interior on the internet:

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Truly spectacular. But AUTOart has taken the safer route, and gone with all black for every colorway of the Huayra. A shame, but probably wise, since it can be hard to make plastic "leather" look realistic. (I suppose they could have tried real leather? But then the model would be $500+. Maybe someday...)

I was about to fault AUTOart for the lack of flocking for the carpet, but as you can see from the photo of the 1:1 above, there simply isn't any. Score another one for the modellers, I guess.

The interior they have provided is realistic enough: chrome touches everywhere, "Pagani" lettering on the steering wheel, carbon fibre on the back of the seats, realistic dials and gauges, good perforation of the air conditioner vents. AUTOart has learned something from its Zonda R and CCX, which were both afflicted with noticable mold lines on some interior parts such as the steering wheel, indicator stalks, and fire extinguisher. No such lines are to be seen in the Huayra's interior:

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All very beautiful, but a shame it isn't tan.

Score: 9.5/10

Overall: 68/70 for a 97%. A high A. The finest diecast I own. It beats even the Zonda R's 63.5 (93.5%).

I recommend this model wholeheartedly. I tried to be critical, but AUTOart simply didn't screw anything up. I was impressed with its heavy weight, fascinating articulated features, beautiful paint, and awesome shelf presence. You can lose track of the time while staring at the neverending parade of engine and interior details.

It makes even the Zonda R and the Veyron feel a little light, a little fragile, and a little underengineered.

Some collectors will probably complain about the price and touting the near-equal shelf presence of the GT Autos Huayra. They are correct that if you don't get any closer than 2 feet away from your models, the extra $200 (and 200%!) premium of the AUTOart appears pointless. You can also get a resin model by BBR in more interesting colors. But if you're like me, you spend your time musing over the details of your diecast, opening up and operating the hinges, and sometimes posing your models in all their opened glory under the lights of your cabinet. And for those purposes, the AUTOart Huayra beats every other Pagani model hollow.

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[KRAFTIG]
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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by [KRAFTIG] » Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:37 pm

A very in-depth review, best one I've read to date. The additional mirrors are a nice update, as the white version I reviewed did not come with an extra set.

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by Rinty » Sat Aug 09, 2014 9:59 am

Good review. This is on my wishlist, but can't get it now. Don't have enough $$. :wall:

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by Kwando » Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:49 pm

Not a fan of ths car but great details over. Solid review.

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Gavin
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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by Gavin » Mon Aug 11, 2014 11:33 am

great review, Mac. Nice to read one of yours again...its been years since I've read one.

Awesome looking model, packed with details & features. Really like the Huayra, more than the Zonda, personally. I hope to get the GT Auto's version at some point, as this AA is WAY out of my price range.

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by StratosWRC » Mon Aug 11, 2014 12:19 pm

Gavin wrote:great review, Mac. Nice to read one of yours again...its been years since I've read one.

Awesome looking model, packed with details & features. Really like the Huayra, more than the Zonda, personally. I hope to get the GT Auto's version at some point, as this AUTOart is WAY out of my price range.
Now that you mentioned the Zonda, I wonder why Autoart is quiet on the regular road going versions. I imagine they would be huge hits.

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by Sanchez » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:23 am

Very detailed review. I don't think I would be able to notice all these intricate details. It takes some skill and time so thanks for sharing! :okay:

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by TAF27 » Thu Dec 11, 2014 4:22 am

What a review! Spectacular model, and I absolutely agree with everything you said.

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Mac47
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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by Mac47 » Thu Dec 11, 2014 7:57 am

Six months later, and I'm still finding features. Just noticed that AA put tiny, unnoticable rubber pads on the sharp bottom front corners of the engine cover to keep it from scratching the paint on the doors if someone tried to shut it without opening the doors first.

The attention to detail is just amazing. MOTY for me, hands down. The only others I saw were the F1 LM and the Zonda Revolución, and the Huayra blows them both away.

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by the1 » Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:11 am

Amazing model and one great review. Thank you!

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Re: Pagani Huayra by AUTOart in Bronze

Post by TAF27 » Sat Jan 17, 2015 5:33 pm

Seriously, the details are epic. I feel sorry for those who got it in resin :P

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