New Spyker Formula 1 launched at Silverstone

Super-luxury car manufacturer Spyker launched its 2007 Formula 1 car at Silverstone this week. At a packed press conference, it was clear that the all-orange machine will be carrying the hopes of the Dutch nation in this year's world championship. The Ferrari-powered machine, named the F8-VII, will be driven by Dutchman Christijan Albers and the young German Adrian Sutil.

Having bought the Midland F1 team just four months ago, this is the first product of a new set-up that includes ex-Toyota design guru Mike Gascoyne, all under the overall control of Spyker Cars CEO Victor Muller, Director of F1 Michiel Mol and Team Principal Colin Kolles.

It's Muller's intention to make the best of the latest changes in F1 rules allowing smaller teams to compete with the top half of the grid, and to make progress in 2007 that will lead to points-scoring and podiums in years to come. He sees the opportunity to compete alongside such famous names as Ferrari and McLaren Mercedes a unique opportunity to publicise the Spyker name, a company with a long tradition of innovative motor racing going back over 100 years to before the Great War.

In 1903 Spyker introduced the advanced 60/80 HP, the first car with a six-cylinder engine as well as permanent four-wheel drive and four-wheel brakes. In 1907 a privately entered standard model Spyker 14/18HP Tourer successfully competed in the famous gruelling Peking to Paris Raid, taking second place.

The company is the only manufacturer to compete in both F1 and GT2 long-distance racing, and plans to continue at Le Mans this year.

There are likely to be spin-offs from F1 into the company's road car development, with some announcements possible at Geneva next month.

Text: Classic Driver
Photos: Spyker

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