The Dutch Donkervoort, like Caterham, has its origins in the Lotus 7. In the mid-1970s, Joop Donkervoort acquired the importership of a kitcar derived from the light Lotus. Because it turned out to have no type approval, the chassis had to be adapted, which led Donkervoort to decide to become a car manufacturer itself. That happened in 1978.
The Donkervoort Super 8 (S8) is the first production Donkervoort. With the S, he implicitly refers to the Super Seven from Lotus. However, Donkervoort is constantly developing the car and making it wider and stronger. The 1988 D10 is so far removed from the original concept that Donkervoort says goodbye to the S in the name.
Until 1999, Donkervoorts were mainly equipped with Ford (Cosworth) engines, but since then Donkervoort has been using Audi, which also supports the development of the D20. Since 2014, Donkervoort has, in addition to its headquarters in Lelystad, also facilities in Germany, with which the car manufacturer strengthens the German ties.