Five weeks after we saw the Pagani Huayra smashing Top Gear lap record in the hands of the Stig, the Internet reveals that Pagani has probably cheated to set its blistering time of 1:13.8 by using hand-cut racing slicks that look street-legal, but really aren’t.
Based on Top Gear power lap’s one and only rule, all cars that go on the board must have road-legal tires.
The controversy first started at TeamSpeed forums, where geeks analyzed the pictures of the Top Gear shoot posted on Flickr and noticed the Huayra that the Stig drove had different tires than what Pagani states on its website.
The Huayra is fitted with Pirelli P-Zero tires size 255/35ZR19 front and 335/30ZR20 rear. The car they sent to the Top Gear test track apparently had a slick version of these tires on in a different size. In fact, the test car is said to be fitted with the same wheels and tires you find on a Zonda R, which is a pure racing car.
The guys at Jalopnik then got in touch with Pagani and asked them about the ongoing tire fiasco. Pagani PR man Luca Venturi responded to the request and made matters more complicated stating that they’ve actually used P-Zero Corsa models for the timed lap.
Then it became clear that the Top Gear test car actually used two sets of tires. Hammond drove the car on normal P Zeros, and then they switched to Corsas for the lap. But that is not enough to keep the voices of forum junkies silent. They still argue that the tires on the car used by Stig had a tread pattern that does not match anything in Pirelli’s current PZero Corsa line. They are definitely hand-cut Zonda R slicks.
So yes, Pagani probably did cheat a little bit. Question is, why do we care? Can’t we just enjoy good television and not question free entertainment?