CHAOS In Greece With SP Automotive Responding To Vaporware Accusations From “Haters”

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If Greek startup Spyros Panopoulos Automotive’s (or SP Automotive for short) goal was to create some buzz around their so-called “ultracar” Chaos, then mission accomplished. However, it wasn’t all rainbow and pink unicorns, as some local and international viewers and journalists questioned the validity of SP Automotive’s breathtaking specs and performance claims, and even the existence of the project itself.

Specs Drive Skeptics

We’ll admit that we’re among those who were – and still are, until we see factual evidence, reasonably skeptical about the performance specifications from a company that has essentially only introduced itself to the world through CGIs and error-ridden English postings. It’s also not exactly confidence-inspiring when your own spec sheet is unsure if the engine’s redline will be 10,000 or 11,000rpm or if it will have 7 or 8 gears.

Read: SP Automotive Chaos Makes Digital Debut As World’s First “Ultracar”, 3,065 HP Flagship Costs $14.4M

To remind you, the Chaos is said to get a newly developed twin-turbo 4.0-liter V10 gasoline engine producing up to 3,065 HP for a 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) run in as low as 1.55 seconds, a quarter mile sprint in 7.5 seconds, and a top speed in excess of 500 km/h (+310 mph). As my colleague Thanos hammered out in the presentation piece, that would smoke the world’s quickest production car through the quarter mile, the Rimac Nevera (8.58 seconds), and fly by the Chiron Super Sport 300+’s 304.773 mph (490.484 km/h) top speed. It would also be more expensive than either one. In fact, with SP Automotive’s advertised price between $6.6 and $14.4 million, the Chaos would make it, if not the, one of the most expensive new cars in history.

Koenigsegg And Rimac Did It, So Why Not SP Automotive?

Rimac’s Nevera promises to be both the fastest electric car and quickest-accelerating car in the world

It’s not that newly formed boutique automakers can’t offer earth shattering performance putting established names like Ferrari and Lamborghini to shame; Koenigsegg, and more recently Rimac, are proof of this. Then again, so can home-built dragsters on the track, but we’re talking about an extremely complicated production model that must pass through several hoops before reaching your driveway.

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither of those two companies accomplished these incredible feats in a couple of years. For example, Rimac was established in 2009, though the groundwork for the company was laid in 2007, with the Concept One revealed in 2011 before entering a limited run of eight examples in 2013 and 2014. Rimac’s Nevera followed several years later in 2018, having, however, drawn mega investments from the likes of Porsche and the Hyundai Group.

We shouldn’t expect a different timeline from SP Automotive, but its founder Spyros Panopoulos should be more restrained about tossing around all sorts of crazy numbers left and right without first providing some tangible proof – not to mention, being focused on one project at a time. When we’ve yet to see anything other than what may or may not be photos of a 3D static model dressed via CGI, throwing in more sketches and renders for multiple future projects like the Cubicle EV and Zion FCV doesn’t help build confidence and trust in your work, no matter your intentions.

Read: Lotus Says Bulleta RF22 Is “Vapor” Or In Other Words, BS

Remember that for every Rimac front cover story, there are dozens of Bulleta Motors that try to render their way into investors’ pockets.

And as far as investing goes, let me put it this way: I love print media, but I wouldn’t  be the smartest kid on the block if I put my money in a new effort to launch a paper magazine instead of an online website in 2021. The same goes for anyone trying to draw interest in a company that is launching a fossil-fueled vehicle at the dawn of electricity, no matter how good it is. Perhaps that’s why he showed the EV and FCV renders? Who knows, but I digress.

SP Group’s Bullish Website

Splashing your website with a ton of sections under the SP Group banner that include “Aviation, Aerospace, Automotive, Navy, Defence and Medical” with pompous statements such as “We supply aerospace sector with mechanical parts, parts of missile systems and other components, which achieve great performance through our technology” and which make today’s Rimac look like a mom and pop startup, doesn’t help either. It just continues to fill up the basket with more questions than anyone would really care to find the answers for.

Combine that with other factors like the FB announcement that appears to have been lost in translation: “What if… someone told you, that there was a vehicle that could catch 0-100, 0-200, 0-300km faster than an F1 car or any other vehicle that has ever been made, either with 4 or 2 wheels?”. Shouldn’t a company that supposedly portrays itself (on its official site) as a tech innovator and provider in so many diverse fields and industries, at the very least have a PR division fluent in English?

Well, at least they’re asking for bank references if you want to enter the priority list on the website. That should alleviate the concerns some of you may have (not).

Renders And CGIs Are Indeed Common In The Industry

On the company’s official Facebook page, social media users pointed out the use of renders for the car and the stock photo background of the factory which turned out to be an unrelated warehouse in the UK. Panopoulos replied that this is common practice among many automakers, and he is right. Beyond CGIs and sketches to tease cars, automakers often use stock/fake backgrounds against their cars – just check out Ferrari.

On the other hand, online ommentators, also asked if SP Automotive was ready to introduce the car in real life at this year’s cancelled 2021 Geneva Motor Show, then why the delay now, 6 months later, which is a valid question.

What About Those Partners Like Top Gear And Red Bull?

If anything, it’s odd that SP Group hasn’t listed any development partners, which would suggest that everything is being done in-house from a company that has yet to show us its facilities – Panopoulos did say he will in due time. But even if it’s going against reason doing precisely that on the mechanical side, it would still need to partner up for electronics and software features such as the augmented reality tech, VR glasses, 5G capabilities, fingerprint recognition, voice commands, and face-recognition cameras it announced.

Instead, what it has done is communicate a number of companies that will help it present, test and sell the Chaos. We’ve reached out to them, including BBC’s Top Gear, Sotheby’s and Red Bull, all of whom Panopoulos said are or will be involved in one way or another with the Chaos, to confirm their association with the project, but we’ve yet to hear back from anyone. If and when they do, we will update this post.

Doubt Panopoulos’ Claims? He Might Call You A “Hater” (Sic)

After the online ruckus from Greek social media posters, Panopoulos dropped a lengthy response today in which he partly tries to answer some people’s concerns and partly call out anyone critical as a “hater”. That’s not how you get in control of a spiraling situation nor do you build consumer and/or investor confidence in a company trying to sell a $14.4 million car. You can read the translated (props go to Andreas Tsaousis) letter to the Greek media below.

Related: SP Automotive Shows Renders Of Cubicle EV And Zion FCV In New Flight Of Fantasy

It’s the nature of startups that rightfully leads the public and investors alike to legitimately question if they can live up to the hype that they themselves created and when they do, if their plan is ultimately, financially viable. The tech and automotive world are ripe of failures even when working prototypes presented to the public offered us proof of concept.

All this, of course, applies to today, based on what we’ve seen, heard and read from SP Automotive. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s up to the company itself to address legitimate concerns and fulfill its promises in a timely manner. Perhaps offering smaller doses of hype spread over time instead of suddenly over-hyping would have been a more prudent approach.

Spyros Panopoulos’ Announcement To The Media (Translated)

Thank you so much for your kind words. We received thousands of messages of support from Greece and abroad and we’re trying to respond to all of them. You really give us a lot of energy to finish the car and roll it out on the streets.

Haters also give us an incentive to finish development ahead of schedule. So far we’ve been working 10 hours per day; now, we’re working even harder.

However, time is not on their side.

I’d like to remind them that a month ago I decided to show off the car because some exterior images were leaked from the patent office. Rather than letting people see those grey photos, which did not do the car justice, I though it would be best if I released renderings, which is a common practice in the automotive industry, even if they’re more expensive to make than just snapping some photos. This is the first reveal of the car, and not a launch (as I’ve already said), and we chose this way because it depicts the colors and details better. Moreover, instead of just the exterior, we wanted to show the interior as well, even in renderings, as it’s not ready yet and is currently under development.

A group of people who don’t want our country to move forward, as this project is the work of Greeks, discovered a rendering of the facilities that we purchased (and looks like the new plant we are building) and used it to discredit us (if we wanted to mislead people, we’d have chosen a rendering that’s not publicly available). Which begs the question why don’t these people do the same thing to Lamborghini, Ferrari, McLaren, Porsche and all companies who use the same images from that company?

Unfortunately, some car magazines also adopted the same rhetoric as they want to cater to the masses. They didn’t even bother to comment on what they saw, which took us thousands of man hours to build, nor even visit our website and see for themselves the real images we’ve published, or just give us a call. Moreover, they claim that we launched the car, which is not what I’ve said we would do.

Since I’m a man of my word, and despite the time pressure, on November 1, as promised, we showed the images and uploaded the car’s specs on our website. The next step is the official launch by members of the government (some of which have already seen it from up close).

And, finally, display it to the public, on our new facilities.

Those who deride us, claiming that the car doesn’t exist, or question our ability to build a 3,000 hp car in Greece when other automakers need 300 million, will be the ones who, soon enough, will ask us to be invited to the presentation in order to snap a picture and publish an article. They will be welcomed, so as to remember what they said and compare it with their recent articles and posts.

I need to stress that, despite claims that we’re spending taxpayers’ money, we haven’t received (or asked for) any funding from the private sector or the state.

Ahead of the car’s launch,, we’d like to thank all our friends, as well as our haters (who will in the future also become our friends).

The future seems bright for the automotive sector in Greece and it won’t be stopped by cheap tricks.

Me and my team will continue our work at an even faster pace.