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The planned “new dawn” for the company suggested that late-era TVR models – Griffith, Cerbera, Tuscan and Sagaris – would be produced under licence by TVR Power (the extant official one-stop-shop for owners) but powered by a 6.2-litre Chevrolet LS V8 with 426bhp and 420lb ft of torque, giving the potential for 180mph. Transmissions, suspension and interiors were to be updated, too. Along with – and here’s the killer news – the price. In the end, the sums simply didn’t add up.
Towards the end of the Nineties, TVRs had already started to push towards £60,000. Not unreasonable, maybe, for a specialist sports car whose manufacture was almost entirely bespoke, from its muscular Speed Six in-line six-cylinder engine to the aluminium cabin trim and switchgear. But with issues hanging over build quality and engine reliability, and the burgeoning choice of high-performance mainstream alternatives, you didn’t have to look too far to explain the dwindling sales.
The idea of a new TVR with a Corvette engine sat uncomfortably with traditionalists but was said to be the only practical way to negotiate emissions regulations, especially in the US. The flat price, according to the TVR Reborn website, was £99,600, which even the most fervent well-wishers took to be a typing error. Smolensky’s putative business model even worked towards all-new models with diesel or electric power. An all but silent TVR – there’s a thought. Now we’ll never know.
If you still want a modern TVR with enough performance to fulfil Eleanor Roosevelt’s advice to do one thing every day that scares you, though, don’t give up hope. Paul Vincent, serial TVR owner and mid-Kent regional organiser for the TVR Car Club, reckons that the best bet is Oxfordshire-based independent specialist STR8SIX, a company run by an ex-TVR engineer who’s been completing some of the cars that were never finished in Blackpool. His “Mark 3” Tuscans go for about £55,000. The trouble is, there aren’t many left, although a few other TVR dealers have similar new, post-production models for sale.
As well as a Cerbera, Vincent owns a couple of Tuscans, the last and arguably the most beautiful and exciting models ever to emerge from the Blackpool factory. “With TVR there’s a car for everyone,” Paul says, anticipating my assertion that some must be vastly better than others as an ownership proposition. “Generally the build quality improved the more examples they made. The cars evolved as time went on with small but useful design changes, so a later one is often a better car.
“The thing to remember with TVRs is the vast amount of aftermarket parts. These range from interior parts through suspension upgrades, right up to more powerful engines.” So what are you waiting for?
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Source : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/news/9402657/The-decline-of-TVR.html