Dutch Automaker Spyker Is Back With Help From Koenigsegg
Koenigsegg makes some of the fastest and interestingly-engineered supercars and hypercars on sale today. The Gemera, for example, has a 3-cylinder engine with 660 hp and no camshaft. Then there are the Swedish automaker’s signature doors, which feature (*deep breath*) dihedral synchrohelix actuators. And now, Koenigsegg is contributing one more thing to the world of rarified supercars: helping bring back Spyker.
Although the modern Spyker company was originally founded in 1999, Autocar reports, the name is significantly older. Dutch coachbuilders Jacobus and Hendrik-Jan Spijker built their first car in 1898, Motor Trend reports. And in WW1, the company made fighter planes and airplane engines. Unfortunately, despite its reputation for quality, the original Spyker went bankrupt in 1925.
But in the early 2000s, Spyker returned with the help of a Dutch lawyer. Its first, and arguably most recognizable car was the 2000 Spyker C8, in convertible Spyder and fixed-glass-roof Laviolette form, Hagerty reports. The mid-engine supercar is powered by a 400-hp version of the Audi R8’s 4.2-liter V8, Autotrader reports. With it, the later automatic-equipped Spyker C8 Aileron can go 0-60 in 4.2 seconds, Car and Driver reports. But if you wanted a stick, the 6-speed manual features a beautiful exposed aluminum linkage, Hagerty reports.
Aluminum is a recurring theme in Spyker’s cars, Hagerty reports. Although many other supercar companies—Koenigsegg included—focus on carbon fiber, the Dutch automaker resolutely stuck with aluminum. Aircraft-related design elements, from the propeller steering wheel to the gauges, are also sprinkled throughout.
Speaking of airplanes, in 2010 Spyker purchased Swedish brand Saab, which also has an aeronautic history, from GM, Forbes reports. Unfortunately, this decision, along with an attempt to compete in F1, financially ruined the company. As did its poor sales: by the time it folded in 2011, Spyker had sold fewer than 300 cars, CarBuzz reports.
How Koenigsegg is helping bring Spyker back
But in 2015, Spyker was revived, Motor1 reports. But despite showing off cars like the C8 Preliator Spyder in 2017, the automaker hasn’t released any new cars, Autoweek reports. This despite promising a US return in 2018.
Now, however, thanks to investments from Russian oligarch and SMP Racing owner Boris Rotenberg and his business partner, Michail Pessis, the Dutch automaker is back on track. And not only is it going to build the Preliator Spyder, but it will also produce an SUV and an additional supercar. Just like the Preliator, Spyker previously showed the D8 Peking-to-Paris SUV and B6 Venator as concepts several years ago.
While Rotenberg and Pessis both own Spykers, they’re not engine manufacturers. That’s where Koenigsegg comes in. The C8 Preliator Spyder will be powered by a Koenigsegg-developed 5.0-liter V8, rated at 600 hp and 443 lb-ft, Motor1 reports.
However, according to a 2017 Road & Track interview with Christian von Koenigsegg, it’s theoretically capable of 1500 hp. The Jesko is proof of that claim. With a twin-turbo version of that V8, it makes 1280 hp on conventional gasoline, but 1600 hp on E85, Automobile reports.
As of this writing, specific production dates have not been released. However, Autocar reports Spyker is aiming for a 2021 release.
Will it be back for good?
Although this news is welcome, potential owners will likely be asking themselves if Spyker will stick around this time.
This wouldn’t be the first time someone tried to reboot a brand only for it to fail. BMW’s old rival Borgward, for example, hinted at a 2017 return. But the Chinese automaker funding the return experienced financial difficulties, Autoweek reports. And Autocar reports the company’s land lease for a planned German factory lapsed in 2019.
Spyker will also have to contend with other renewed marques like Delage. Not to mention the continued presence of current high-end brands like Rolls-Royce, Bentley, and Aston Martin. And, of course, Bugatti. We’ll just have to see if Spyker’s second verse ends up sounding better than the first.
Follow more updates from MotorBiscuit on our Facebook page.