By on March 7, 2008

I've never driven a Spyker, but I've sat in a bunch. And let me tell you, this is the car in which you want to be buried. Still, as I said, I have no clue how a Spyker drives. The C8 is propelled by the 4.2-liter V8 out of the Audi RS4, so I'm good with that. If Spyker is like a lot of big ticket small volume products, the car probably doesn't live up to the interior, right? Or does it? How will we ever know? Well, luckily for car fans, Matt from Garage 419 took one for the team and drove the boutique hypercar. His verdict? Not bad.

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17 Comments on “Garage 419 Drives the Spyker C8 Spyder...”

  • avatar
    Stephan Wilkinson

    Authoritative review. Super-cool shifter, chirps second gear, rules, awesome. It’s the 21st century equivalent of Road & Track’s old “the shifter falls readily to hand.”

  • avatar

    I would use “degenerate” to describe the driver. As for the car, it has no chance as being recognized as a proper sports/supercar when it uses another manufacturer’s components.

  • avatar

    Re Dinu:

    Dear Mr Cheerypants;

    You infer that Lotus is not a proper sports car maker ?

  • avatar

    IIRC Only Ferrari was nuts enough to develop their very own powerplants. Everyone else either bases their monster motors on a mass-produced engine (the decent way), or simply finds the best available powerplant for the job (the smart way). While some tried the Ferrari way back in the day, it is no longer popular – too expensive, I guess.

  • avatar
    Jordan Tenenbaum

    Dinu, I think Pagani begs to differ.

  • avatar
    Stephan Wilkinson

    Certainly Porsche never based all their true competition engines on their mass-produced engines…though I was surprised to learn, when I visited the Dyson Racing shop a couple of weeks ago, that the RS Spyder engine is based on the Cayenne V8.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Stephan Wilkinson:

    I will say only this — it really is a super-cool shifter.

    Like… really extra double super-cool.

  • avatar

    While Lotus and Pagani make fantastic machines (I would be foolish to argue otherwise), there’s something they lack when compared to Ferrari, Mercedes, Maserati, Alfa… That “certain something” would be a significant part of my decision to purchase such vehicle. It’s called heritage. And to people spending $$$ on a toy, it matters.

    Making your own engine matters in this class. An AMG V8 sounds different from a Ferrari V8. Now throw a Toyota engine into a Lotus and I believe it does the brilliant chassis injustice. Of more importance however, it drains/withdraws/takes away from the brand’s heritage/cachet. And that’s not a good thing.

    But I’m not in the market for such an automobile, so what do I know? :)

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Does someone else want to tell Dinu where Maserati engines come from?

    And Alfa V8s?

  • avatar
    Stephan Wilkinson

    Having extensively driven four or five different Elises, most recently the supercharged S, I can assure you that “Toyota engine” is a fabulous little four.

    It’s amusing to think that not long ago–at least from my white-haired perspective–an engine like that would have been powering a GP car.

  • avatar

    Love the dash. I am so tired of the plastic formed dashes on everything, even Jeeps.

  • avatar

    I know where they come from (Ferrari) but those brands do have (racing) heritage, something that helps with the sale at that price point. A Ferrari engine in any car would make it more desirable, but trying to build a supercar to compete with Ferrari while stuffing an Audi V8 in it it’s not the same.

  • avatar

    Ah yes, The Spyker C8…One of the very view cars my country produces/assembles anymore, along with the Donkervoort (like a Caterham but better). Shame the F1 team went down though, although it was inevitable from the start.

    A couple of things though; the steering wheel on the new versions is about the same as the one in the Gallardo, only wrapped in leather of course. In Europe, there is a very nice looking 4 spoke steering wheel installed but it didn’t make it through US crash test, because there is no airbag in it. Stupidly enough though, in truth even with the airbag in place when you crash you will never hit the airbag when it is deployed, at least not when you wear the (6 point) belt, because your face won’t reach it.


    Still, as I said, I have no clue how a Spyker drives.

    It drives just the way you want it to drive, literally, because you can request the way you want the setup of your chassis to be and have it adjusted later if you don’t like it.

    And finally, the engine is not simply the one from the RS4, in fact it isn’t that engine at all. It’s a version of the S4 engine that Spyker tunes themselves to get to the 400HP (at least). Again, if you want to they’ll bolt some turbos on so you can get something like 550 HP.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman


    Not to fight, but… Audi has some pretty serious racing heritage.

  • avatar

    Oh yes they do (Auto Unions, Quattro in Rallying, DTM, Le Mans victories) but what I was getting at is that when you try to build a TRUE supercar to compete w/the likes of Ferrari, stuffing a somewhat more “plebeian” (when compared to Ferrari) powerplant in your offer won’t cut it – the soul of such car, its engine, is just not there.

    Think of it this way:

    Spyker: Nouveau Riche Punk
    Ferrari: Old Money Connoisseur

  • avatar
    Virtual Insanity

    Dinu…I’ll take the Nouveau Riche Punk. It seems more fun. I still want a drop top Lambo, though.

  • avatar

    It’s not like they just screw the engine out of an Audi and bolts it into the Spyker… And i think moderns Ferraris are not very pretty to be honest.

    Top Gear testing the C8,

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