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by Adam Lynton
None of these cars herald from Europe’s usual suspects. But that doesn’t mean they’re not worthy of praise.
European carmakers are two a penny. Even supercar makers on the continent are commonplace. But the majority tend to herald from Italy, France, Germany and the UK. So what about those from countries unknown for their supercar making prowess? To shed some light on the supercars built in countries rarely associated with producing million-dollar 200mph+ automobiles, we've brought you five of the best currently on the roads or that soon will be.
The Dutch niche automaker Spyker briefly ran its own F1 team, and more ambitiously tried to make a go of running Saab. In the future it will focus on the C8, a model which initially launched way back in 2000. After revising the C8 several times along the way, Spyker released the substantially redesigned C8 Aileron in 2009. With an Audi-sourced 4.2-liter V8, sharper lines and a more accommodating cabin, the Aileron was built with expanded sales in mind. Production has since moved to the UK, where the Aileron and its unsurpassedly finely-detailed cabin - with machine-turned aluminum trim, quilted leather and exposed shifter linkage - is being geared up to surpass the 94 cars Spyker sold at its peak in 2006.
When Denmark's Zenvo ST1 arrived in the US, it came in the form of a special edition exclusive to the North American market. The red, white, and blue ST1 50S is priced at $1.8 million that gets you a rear-wheel drive twin-charged in-house 7.0-liter V8 tuned to produce 1250hp and 1106lb-ft of torque and coupled to a 7-speed paddle-shifter, normally an optional extra on the standard car of which only 15 units are to be made. Individual monogrammed seats and a dedication plaque signed by the engineers and owners form part of the package, as does on-site warranty and service work which will be carried out by Zenvo's concierge service anywhere in the world.
Following the car's unveiling at Pebble Beach during The Quail and the McCall Motorworks Revival, the Swedish-made Agera R garnered enough attention from interested parties for Koenigsegg to launch it on this side of the Atlantic. The Agera R represents the ultimate embodiment of Christian von Koenigsegg's dream. With a twin-turbo 5.0-liter V8 generating 1,100 horsepower and 885 lb-ft of torque, the Agera R boasts one of the highest power-to-weight ratios in the business and can accelerate from 0-62 mph in 2.9 seconds and hit a top speed in excess of 245 mph.
Spain's GTA unveiled the production version of its Spano supercar at the 2012 Geneva Motor. Power comes from an 8.3-liter V10 with 840hp that's mated to a seven-speed transmission which sends all of that power to the rear rubber. The automaker claims the Spano can hit 62 mph in only 2.9 seconds. Constructed of titanium, carbon fiber and even kevlar, it weighs a total of just 2,970 pounds. It's overall styling is also beautiful and those sweeping curves that begin at the top of the front fender and extend all the way towards the rear really gives it a strong, yet graceful stance. Official pricing hasn't been announced just yet, but we highly suspect that it will be sold in very limited numbers.
The Rimac Automobili Concept One made its official debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show. In terms of style and electric technology, the four-engined 1,088hp and 2,800 lb-ft of torque supercar has no equivalent on the road. And with a recently-announced-in-Monaco price tag of just under $1 million, not a lot of competition in terms of pricing either. The Croatian automaker will produce only 88 units of the Concept One, which utilizes a slim curb weight (relatively speaking, of course) of 3,637lbs to travel from 0 to 62 mph in 2.8 seconds and to a claimed top speed of 195mph. On a single charge, the supercar can travel a distance of roughly 373 miles.