Forget Sharon Stone. “Basic Instinct 2: Risk Addiction” is the Spyker’s role of a lifetime.
Catherine Trammell has ditched her Lotus Esprit for a Spyker C8 Laviolette, a $300,000 car with an all-aluminum carriage and a 40-valve Audi V8 engine that gets to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.
“All our cars are designed by CEO Victor Muller,” says Spyker publicist Sylvia Hugenholtz. “Every detail is inspired by airplanes.”
However, the Laviolette is unlike any airplane you’ve seen. While duPont Car Registry’s Exotic Car Buyers Guide named it “Best New Exotic Car 2006,” it’s also been a frequent target of reviewers’ disdain. Gawker Media blog jalopnik.com described it as “a Mr. Potatohead vision of a mid-engined sportster.”
And, from some angles, the Laviolette can resemble a sad, slow sea creature, with intake rings that could double as blowholes and vents that mimic gills.
The company has a long, if disjointed, history. Founded by Jacobus and Hendrik-Jan Spijker in 1898, the Amsterdam company first gained notoriety when it built the horse-drawn state coach for the coronation of Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands; it’s still in use today.
The company then dedicated itself to automobiles, only to go bankrupt in 1929. It re-emerged in 2000 under the motto “Nulla tenaci invia est via” — or, “For the tenacious, no road is impassable.”
Seeing as it took 14 years and a lawsuit from its star to make the “Basic Instinct” sequel, the slogan alone may make the Spyker the right choice.
What do the cars of other MGM villains have to say for themselves? We took a look back at the wheels of James Bond’s nemeses.
|1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III||AMC Matador (with flying conversion)|
|The Movie: “Goldfinger” (1964)
The Villain: Auric Goldfinger
The Statement: I don’t kill people; my people kill people.
|The Movie: “The Man with the Golden Gun” (1974)
The Villain: Francisco Scaramanga
The Statement: There was nothing else available.
|Ferrari F355 Berlinetta||Jaguar XKR|
|The Movie: “Goldeneye” (1995)
The Villain: Xenia Onatopp
The Statement: I want everyone to see me killing you.
|The Movie: “Die Another Day” (2002)
The Villain: Zao
The Statement: I’m the first metrosexual killer.