Here’s Why 2022 Could Be A New Beginning For TVR
PUBLISHED 1 DAY AGO
TVR has had its fair share of problems over the years but is their luck about to change next year with the new Griffith?
For this is a carmaker that has produced some of the most exciting high-performance two-seaters in the world, a company that has painstakingly hand crafted its gorgeous vehicles with skilled engineers, while building cars with one single goal in mind, fun.
TVR is an extraordinary company that has chosen not to pitch its wares against the 1.8-liter coupes and compact sports convertibles from Europe, that are so prevelant now on our roads. But one that has retained its focus on what can only be described as ‘Big Boys Toys’! Its given us some proper sports cars, loaded with big V8 engines, substantial brakes, and heavy steering.
Jeremy Clarkson once said: “Owning a TVR in the past was like owning a bear, I mean it was great, until it pulled your head off, which it would. One day, it would pull your head off”.
TVR’s Humble Beginning
Via: Wikimedia Commons
It all started in a small workshop in Blackpool, England, back in 1946, when a young 23-year-old, ex-apprentice motor engineer, named Trevor Wilkinson setup his own car repair business called Trevcar Motors. A year later, Trevor changed the company name to TVR engineering (an abbreviation of his name), kick-starting the iconic brand that today, we all know and love.
The young engineer had a vision for the company, and much like Dr. Frankenstein, he wanted to create his own living, breathing monster. A car of his own making. So he started sourcing vehicle components and stitching one together, even using an old rev counter from a WW2 Spitfire aircraft for his first creation.
What followed is a catalog of wonderful sports cars, stripped-down speed machines with beautiful curves that make up for what they lack in safety features with amazing acceleration, beautiful sounds and endless amounts of pleasure.
But, behind this iconic carmaker’s fabulous slew of cars is a remarkable story. A heart-rending tale that describes the roller-coaster journey of a struggling business, full of amazing highs and desperately unfortunate lows.
The company first went bankrupt in 1962, was reformed as TVR cars in 1963, then fell into liquidation again soon after, and it was saved from oblivion in 1965. Then, in the late ’70s, it hit financial trouble again, but also managed to scrape through. It’s heyday was between 1981 and 2004 (the Wheeler-era), when it really did produce some absolutely gorgeous V8 monsters. But with a new Russian owner onboard in 2004, it hit rock bottom once more, and since then its production lines have laid dormant.
But now the company is finally back in the game. Revived by a consortium led by the entrepeneur, Les Edgar. And today they have a promising new car, the all-new Griffith. The question that’s on everyone’s lips is:- Can the new car deliver future success for the ailing British car maker? Success that it so desperately needs and deserves.
So lets take a closer look at the much-awaited, all-new TVR Griffith…
A New Start: The All-New TVR Griffith
During its development the company was asked about the specification of the new Griffith, and they said that it has to be:-
“British in every way, true to TVR’s DNA and heritage, V8, front-engined with manual transmission & rear wheel drive and a two seat coupe/convertible that’s breathtaking in appearance and performance”.
It’s now four years since the first prototype was revealed and specifications are still, understandably, changing. But the new car is likely to be loaded with a 5.0-liter V8 Ford Cosworth tuned engine, similar to the units in the Mustang.
Gone is the fiber glass body, much of it replaced by a carbon fiber composite to keep the car’s weight down (between 1200-1300 kgs) and help launch the new Griffith from zero to sixty in under 4.0 seconds, and deliver a top speed of 200 mph.
Improvements to safety (something TVR has historically lacked) are promised too :
“Employing a full ground-effect aerodynamic package to deliver outstanding stability and handling capabilities, the new TVR has been designed and engineered with driver focused performance and safety as its main priority”. (Source: TVR)
Much like its predecessors, the new car, with its cool new side exhausts and burbling V8 engine, sounds great.
Its revolutionary ‘Ground Effect’ technology descends straight from F1 car design, and TVR say :
“The use of side exhausts allows a flat floor configuration generating downforce by channeling the airflow along the underside of the vehicle to suck it towards the road. By employing ground effect in the new car’s design, TVR has ensured it remains unflinchingly stable at high speeds while delivering exceptional handling and cornering capabilities”.
Les Edgar and his team have done a tremendous job with this new car, sticking to their promise of retaining TVR’s true DNA, yet providing something fresh, innovative, and awesome to look at.
After a successful Goodwood unveiling, the new Griffith was due to roll off the company’s production lines in 2018. However, delays with the new assembly plant in Wales and the Coronavirus pandemic have unfortunately stalled production of this much-awaited car.
The company is now aiming for a 2022 launch of the all-new Griffith.
So how does the future look for TVR?
There’s A Bright Future Ahead For TVR With The 2022 Griffith
It’s rumored that the carmaker has already secured a healthy set of deposits for the all-new Griffith and that there is a long waiting list of loyal TVR owners queuing up for it, which is great news.
Les Edgar is quoted saying :
“It’s no secret that this project has turned out to be tougher than we expected and has taken longer, but we’re all still completely dedicated to building a sustainable sports car business. Many of the delays have been caused by problems beyond our control.” (Source: Autocar)
TVR has made it clear that they don’t want the car’s price-tag to rise above $138,000 and that they intend to follow a similar business model to their key rival, Porsche, which will see them offer a variety of new Griffith models with different engines and trim-levels.
Once in the showroom, the new Griffith be competing with the likes of Aston Martin’s V8 Vantage, Porsche’s 911 and Jaguar’s F-Type, stiff competition indeed for this Welsh newcomer.
However, at TVR, and amongst its loyal fan-base, the current mood is positive. Les Edgar is passionate about the brand and he has a clear, fresh, new vision for the company, supported by a bold set of plans for the future. And, after all its past ups and downs, the company is stable right now, under his leadership. Thankfully, the new modernised assembly plant does appear to be receiving all of the required funding, even from the Welsh government.
But, it’s the new car that’s going to shape the short-term future of this enduring company. And the new Griffith is without doubt a very competitive, high quality product. It is more technologically advanced than any previous TVR model and it clearly looks like it is about to follow in the footsteps of its predecessors, with superb looks, great handling and blistering performance.
This all bodes well for a company that has really suffered over the years and hasn’t seen a new car roll off its production line for nearly a decade.
But there’s one thing that TVR has clearly proved and that is – that it’s a survivor!
Dozens of British car companies have sadly perished since the 1950’s, but this courageous little outfit, which is a huge part of Britain’s motoring heritage, has bravely managed to soldier through.
For TVR the next twelve months will be crucial, and there will likely be further problems as the new car goes into full production. But judging by TVR’s past history and its innate ability to deal with adversity, this iconic British brand has more than demonstrated that it has the grit, tenacity and determination to overcome whatever challenges are put in front of it. We can’t wait to see the new car on the streets soon, let’s all raise a glass to ‘New Beginnings’. Roll on 2022!
Here’s to hoping this article is true.
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