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Dutch sportscar maker Spyker to increase production

Original firm made first car in 1898

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

ZEEWOLDE, the Netherlands - New investments in Dutch car maker Spyker are key to a plan to increase the company’s annual output to 50 hand-crafted vehicles. Its three owners are contemplating to issue new shares and list the car maker at the Amsterdam stock exchange.

The venerable Spyker brand was resurrected in 2000 by Maarten de Bruyn, who immediately got car afficionado Victor Muller and media tycoon John de Mol on board as investors.

The original Spyker factory in Amsterdam had been set up by brothers Jacobus and Hendrik-Jan Spijker, the coach builders who had made the famed Golden Coach for the inauguration of Queen Wilhelmina in 1898. The Gouden Koets still is in use by the Royal Family.

From 215,000 euros

The brothers’ first car was made that same year under the brand name Spyker for better international recognition. A Spyker placed second in the grueling 1907 Pe-king to Paris race. During the First World War, Spyker temporarily switched to making airplanes. Although it ceased making cars in 1925, the brand name continues to be recognized as representing high quality.

The new Spyker plant is unable to meet the demand. In 2003, Spyker made 20 high-performance vehicles, but hopes to increase production to 50 in 2004. The company is targeting an annual output of 200 in a few years.

Among Spyker’s current customers are several American entertainers.

The ‘low-end’ handmade, aluminium Spyker C8 Spyder has a 4.1 liter, 400hp V8 engine and a top-speed of 300 kilometres per hour. The car’s pre-tax price is from 215,000 euros. The Spyker C8 Double 12 carries a pricetag of 350,000 euros.