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Old 15th November 2010, 07:32   #1
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Default Trip to Maranello/Modena - Ferrari, Lambo, Pagani

I am not good at writeups and I have posted only one travelogue before this. I hope the photos will make up for skills (lack of). The travelogue is not well detailed but I will be more than happy to answer any questions to anyone who wished to visit the place.

I often visit Italy on work, but its generally southern Italy. I was always fascinated by Modena region in Northern Italy, but never had the chance to visit.

A small region which has Ferrari, Lambo, De Tomaso, Ducati, Pagani Zonda, all within 30 KM. Is it something to do with the water there? I guess Enzo Ferrari is to be credited for this. It was he who started and created the talent pool, I guess

Back to the story, I was supposed to visit Turin in northern Italy for some meetings and was thrilled to notice that I was staying at a converted car factory!

Although Turin is home to Fiat, Sparco, Pininfarina, and Bertone, I was too smitten by an article on Pagani Zonda to miss my chance to visit Modena which is 3 Hours away from Turin.

Arrived in Bologna, by RyanAir (cost 30 EUR Inc tax from London), went straight to the rental car office to pick up my Fiat 500. I was on a tight schedule and had my first appointment at Ducati in 30 minutes and as usual...Mr. Murphy Law struck.

They could not locate my booking, when they did they could not find the car keys, and finally admitted to me that they did not have a fiat 500. So took the offered upgrade which was a Lancia Musa. Bigger car, but ugly and characterless. Looked as if it was straight out of a Chinese car brochure.

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It was a nightmare to drive because the steering was so light and disconnected I thought my car had an issue. Later understood it was the norm, not an exception. The car was rife with blind spots. Especially the A pillar. Take a left turn with prayer. Lots of prayer.

Reached Ducati which is 15 min from the airport and was met by a lovely lass by the name of Alessandra.
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Unfortunately, none of the factories I visited allowed Photography.

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Rushed through the factory, met a bunch of Ducati sponsored riders from USA on training. The factory was big but not huge and didn’t take much time to cover the whole assembly line.
But I was then too late to cover both the factory and the museum since I had to reach Modena in an hour.

I left the factory a bit sad and frustrated, pissed at the rental company for the delay. But my next destination lifted my spirits.

Modena is 25 KM from Bologna and takes 30 min to cover at an average speed. Unlike driving inside cities, driving on motorways in Italy is not stressful at all. The roads are good and well signposted. Modena, Maranello and Bologna are all part of Emilia Romagna region famous of cars and food (Bolognese!!).

Reached in time for my next appointment which was at a non descripting industrial area. Checked the address once again to be sure and confirmed it when I heard an unmistakable growl of a supercar, Voila The mighty Pagani Zonda.

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Pagani Factory: It resembles a big house with a cobbled path leading to a garage. Definitely not more than 7000-8000Sq.feet, maybe enough for 40 employees and 17 cars a year.

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Went inside the gate where a couple of Zonda F’s were parked. Didn’t even bother going closer because my guide opened the showroom door and parked there was the worlds ONLY Pagani Zonda Uno waiting for delivery.

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It was a mix of Zonda R and Zonda Cinque.Both of which were extremely rare, not more than 10 pieces each.

Zonda Uno was painted in an unmistakable Qatari royal family baby blue shade. It is the last Zonda ever to be built since Pagani is building a new model replacing the Zonda, codenamed C9.
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The steering wheel is covered in a suede cover.

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The car next to the Uno was a Cinque, another rare car (only 10 made) 6 to HK/China/Singapore customers and 2 to ME and 2 to RoW.

It was created by repeated requests from Pagani’s HK dealer and was supposed to be called Pagani SPS (SPS is HK dealer of Pagani). Cinque is made of a new type of CF with titanium mixed. Stronger and Lighter.

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The car destined for Bahrain.

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The group from Bahrain

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Cinque interior

Was not allowed to sit inside the Uno , but sat inside the Cinque for sometime letting the feeling sink in. Huge speakers are placed just behind the headrest with finely crafted leather and suede throughout the car.
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Before entering the assembly area, we had to place our cameras in a box (carbon fiber of course) since the extremely secretive C9 project was going on and is supposed to be complete by this year.

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The factory area is divided into three big rooms. First is where the CF materials are weaved and layers onto the frame. It is like watching a tailor stitch and fit a suit. Handmade is an understatement when it comes to Pagani. I saw around 6 people working in this section. The next area is where the engine is placed onto the car. The engines are all supplied by AMG because Horacio Pagani’s friend and mentor Fangio (Race driver) had connections in MB and hence got him the first engines when he was setting up the company.

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UNO - Check out the numbering!!

There was a Zonda F being repaired after a minor accident that cost 300,000 GBP. This car is owned by Scotsman from UK and was subject to major debate as to who drove the car when the accident happened. The owner said that it was a racing champion and some believed it was Jackie Stewart causing him to publicly deny the allegation. It was also the largest insurance payout on a car accident in UK.

Moved onto the next area, where a Zonda R, holder of the Nurburgring lap record (Now beaten) was being tinkered with by couple of guys in cool Pagani Tees. There was a small room to one corner and as soon as they saw us, closed the room, masked the windows with black paper and placed a huge picture of Zonda F in front. It seems that’s where the new model is being prepared codenamed the C9. We were all eager to know more about it but one cold stare from one of the staff was enough to make our guide change the topic.

I noticed a tall young guy walk into the factory with an air of super coolness around him, you could see he is special by how the gals in the factory including our guide behaved. Seems, he is the main test driver for Pagani. Lucky chap.

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A gift to Pagani from a very happy and veryyy rich customer.

We were about to leave the floor when Mr.Horacio Pagani himself walked in. He was on his way to the C9 room but changed his mind when he saw some mere mortals

He was very courteous although he knew none of us were planning to contribute to his pension plans.

On asked whether he had any enquiries from India, he said YES!!! . None concrete yet, but he is sure that India would have one in couple of years .It seems he is betting on the Asian market a lot, since 80% of his customers are from Middle and Far East.

I also asked him a personal question – Which car did HE drive and what was the watch he had on. The watch was a Hublot and he drives a , hold your breath, R class !!!...and CL65 AMG.

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I didn’t ask him why the R class. Dint want to sound too nosy as if I hadn’t already.

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Music System designed by Pagani.

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The Lovely Uno seats!!!.

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Said goodbye to all and left for the next destination: Lamborghini, which was 20 min away.

To be continued...
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Old 15th November 2010, 07:49   #2
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Great story and travelogue coming up, this! Keep writing and am hoping to see the lot of Rosso Corsa, Arancio Atlas and Verde Ithaca in coming up pictures.

P.S. I have seen two Zonda F in Vancouver and boy, aren't they really wild cars! Got chance to sit in one and listened to that mighty V12 singing. Ah, memories memories....

Did you fire up/drive any of those cars by any chance?

Last edited by Ace F355 : 15th November 2010 at 07:51.
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Old 15th November 2010, 14:22   #3
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Lovely travelouge. Glued to it. Keep them coming.

I was in Beijing recently and happened to walk by the Pagani showroom there. They really build some truly beautiful cars. I was amazed as I have never come across a Pagani Showroom anywhere else I can only imgine what you must have felt like visiting the factory!
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Old 15th November 2010, 14:52   #4
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Really unique insight and photos that you dont see in regular mags/interviews.
Liked your opening shot of the termignoni cans. There is something about Italian stuff, they have mastered the art of 'cool' (except your hire car:-)).
Waiting for the next instalment of photos/commentary.

Last edited by KMT : 15th November 2010 at 14:53.
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Old 15th November 2010, 15:07   #5
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super awesome stuff man . Waiting for the lambo tour. bring it on baby.
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Old 15th November 2010, 15:09   #6
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Awesome !

I'm totally transfixed by the pictures. May be someday I'll get a chance to sit in these beauties.

Please continue the narration and the awesome pictures of these beauties!
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Old 19th November 2010, 21:28   #7
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Thanks guys!. Apologies on the delay in posting the rest.
@Ace: No i did not get to start the cars, but I did enjoy the test driver ripping it!!!!. Even my grandfather who hated noise would have loved it!!

I shall post the Lambo factory museum tour by evening
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Old 20th November 2010, 00:57   #8
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Lamborghini factory and Museum are situated at Sant’Agata Bolognese which is around 20-30 minutes from the Pagani factory.

I was planning to visit the factory and museum, but was unlucky. The factory was closed to visitors due to renovation and the only place open was the Museum.

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The Lamborghini Museum is inside the factory premises and is a glass building of two floors with around 20-25 cars. It will cost you 9 EUR and the museum is open on all days except Saturday/Sunday.

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I parked my car outside the factory and slowly walked inside. It all felt unreal to me especially when I saw three LP670‘s, three!!! parked as if they didn’t have space inside the small showroom floor.

Went inside the Museum , it was just a big hall packed with cars. The bottom floor had mostly earlier models as well as a small bio about Mr. Lamborghini on the wall.

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350 GT

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The man Enzo "shouldnt" have pissed off!!!

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The LM002

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Bertoni - also based in Turin , along with Pinifarina

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Lamborgini Espada

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The Lambo Lounge

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The menancing Jerama 400 GT, successor of Islero

The second floor had a feature wall , with a Gallardo as the feature.

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What a view !!

There were a couple of concept cars, but I am not a fan of those.

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There was a small area dedicated to boats

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L900 I Engine ( Powerboat)

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Another one with Tubi exhausts!

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The masterpiece of the museum was parked in the middle of the floor , a Reventon. In person this car is pure art!. I am sure it will scare the bejeesus out of you when it appears on your wing mirror.

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Left the museum and walked into the store in the factory reception selling Lambo caps, models, key chains, Jeans, Shirts, Jackets….and rightly a bunch of Arab kids walked in and bought everyone of the above.

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For all the scale model fans

Hope to visit the factory next time I am in the region. Bought a pizza from a small café outside and asked for the directions to the most famous tourist destination in the 30 mile radius…Ferrari, Maranello.
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Old 26th December 2010, 07:22   #9
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena- Ferrari, Lambo,Pagani

Ferrari Maranello
After visiting Lamborghini facility, I was too tired to drive to Maranello and moreover it was getting rather late in the evening to get decent pictures. So went straight to Modena town centre and checked into a hotel. Went out for dinner in a restaurant suggested by the concierge as the best place in Modena to have seafood.

He was right I guess, because the place was packed and the seafood pasta was yummy. Bought a box of fresh pastries and went back to the hotel.Boy I love watching TV with a box of pastries .

Woke up refreshed the next day,checked out and drove straight to Maranello, which takes 30 min in peak traffic .
You expect a huge sign saying welcome to Ferrari land or maybe all RED buildings once you are in Maranello, but no. Its just another small town in Italy with yellow painted,red tiles houses and BAM..on your right side, right after a set of houses, is the Ferrari factory.

Parked the car in the lot opposite to the factory and then stayed there looking at the factory thinking about the people who are working there and the ones who were shopping for groceries at the shop opposite!!.

The thing about Ferrari factory is that you are welcome to visit ..Only if you own a Ferrari or you have considerable clout with Pirelli or FOML . Same with Maserati.

Walked into a Ferrari store opposite the factory and shopped for some overpriced clothing + toys. Thats when I noticed a Ferrari badged mini bus full of people coming out of the factory. I havent seen that many rich people in a bus,ever.

Couple of chinese,arabs and lots of germans and once they got into the store, they started picking up everything. I asked the guy from Qatar why he was buying Ferrari keychains and Tshirts when he had a Ferrari at home.It seems its all for friends and relatives.

There are only three things to do in Maranello if you dont own a Ferrari.

1. Take the mandatory snap in front of the Ferrari building.
2.Galleria Ferrari
3.Drive a Ferrari.

Galleria Ferrari is 5 min from the factory and is just a small hall with a bunch of F1 cars and helmets. I was not impressed by the museum , maybe because I was expecting a bit too much.

But there was a number of older race cars which were absolute pleasure to look at. At the cafe , got talking to a guy who was in the group that visited the factory . A nice chap who owns two night clubs in Amsterdam. Owns a F430 and a Bentley FS. Didnt ask him what kind of clubs!!.

Driving a Ferrari in Maranello was a thing to check in my To Do List. But when I knew that it was 100 EUR for 10 minutes and that too in those small lanes , I decided against it.The max speed you can hit is 60 KM befire you hit something else. 30 pounds more and I can drive the the new 458 Italia on the track and RIP it.

But neverthless went to a store outside the Galleria ferrari which rents them , struck a conversation with a chap who was trying to sell the 10 min slots. He let me sit inside one and even started it for me and I am happy to say that it was a Scuderia. I didnt revv it , just sat there dazed.

There are two stores outside renting out the Ferraris, PUSHSTART - TEST DRIVE MARANELLO was one of them.

the best thing about Maranello is the number of Ferraris you see on the road. Every 5 minutes somebody will be ripping it on their way to the Fiorano which was 5 min away from the Galleria/Factory.

Seems there was a FXX couple of days before I visited the place. So I thought I will check out the circuit, but I guess I took the wrong turn and ended up only listening to screaming engines because the guy at teh gate I reached refused to let me in.

I was running out of time and had a 3 hour drive to Turin before catching my flight and I knew if I missed that , i will definitely miss my job and salary for a loooong time.

Hope you all enjoy the pics atleast.
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Old 26th December 2010, 10:24   #10
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena- Ferrari, Lambo,Pagani

Excellent pictures and i am sure it would have been a memorable trip.

Bad they have a policy of not allowing any visitors to their factory apart from the owners and potential buyers. Hope they would change their policy one day

Did you try to take any snap(interiors) of the car which you sat down??
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Old 26th December 2010, 20:05   #11
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena- Ferrari, Lambo,Pagani

I have no words. Thanks for sharing. Excellent write up as well, I must say.
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Old 29th December 2010, 09:41   #12
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena- Ferrari, Lambo,Pagani

Thanks guys.

And no I didnt take a snap of the Scuderia interiors. It was bare with lots of CF and thin red stitching running on the dashboard edges.
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Old 29th December 2010, 12:26   #13
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena- Ferrari, Lambo,Pagani

Toooooooo much to see Pagani, Lambo and Ferrari in the same thread . Nice pics there dude !!
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Old 31st December 2010, 16:49   #14
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena- Ferrari, Lambo,Pagani

artofzen ji, informative and thanks for sharing!

I only wish for a job like yours.
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Old 3rd January 2011, 12:32   #15
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Default Re: Trip to Maranello/Modena - Ferrari, Lambo, Pagani

Awesome travelogue. You've brought the Lamborghini, Ferrari and Pagani experience alive for us. Thanks a ton mate!
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