Production dream dies as British firm in contact with The Russian tells us they're probably toast
The dream of resurrecting any of the most recent TVR models has all but died with news that the jigs and body moulds for cars like the Tuscan and Sagaris are likely to have been scrapped.
These essential items for production were shipped out to Dresden, Germany, after Russian businessman Nikolay Smolensky bought TVR back in 2004, but we've been told they're likely to have gone the way of TVR itself.
Tuscan one of the models affected
They were offered to UK specialists Powers Performance (formerly TVR Power) but the sheer cost of transporting them back to the UK was too much for boss Dominic Trickett. "Now he says he's sold them to a businessman in Dresden, which tells me he's scrapped them," Trickett told us.
Trickett, who used to be a development engineer for TVR, is doubtful anyone UK based would have had the stomach to bring them all back. "No-one in the UK is going to hire 40 lorries, only to find the body moulds have all been distorted," he said.
The company has kept in contact with Smolenksy and was involved in The Russian's plan to install Corvette LS engines into rebodied TVRs.
However that plan came to nothing. "We put the LS and the Borg Warner 6-speed in it," Trickett said. "We were trying to homologate for Europe and the US, but we realised there wasn't a cost-effective market for the car."
Earlier this year Smolensky officially declared TVR dead and said he was going to use the name on wind farms, although nothing seems to have emerged from that.
"You can't build a mark III Tuscan and call it a Vulcan, it's not a new model," Trickett told us. "To bring back TVR you need £50 million to build a new car."
However he said that UK specialists are now sophisticated enough to build an entire TVR from scratch if anyone was prepared to pay. "There's more facility now to buy parts and have them made than there ever was when TVR was in business."
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Are there any "part moulds" for making crash repair panels anywhere? Or will it be a matter of second hand panels or moulds taken of existing cars?
RTH29 Nov 2012
What a disaster this whole saga has been. If only Peter Wheeler had not sold it out,when and to whom he did , they might have still been making cars in some form today. Sad loss to the British car scene.Bad news.
Rrroro29 Nov 2012
I don't own a TVR myself, but nevertheless found this quite a sad story. It's like exhuming a body thinking it may in fact be alive, but then re-burying it.
.... Sorry for the morbid thoughts this bright sunny Thursday afternoon!
Ri Orus229 Nov 2012
I'm getting tired of reading about this. I'm no petrol head, i'm a TVR head and whilst the marque is very much alive amoungst the clubs etc it genuinely saddens me read reams of bad news. I couldn't care less for any other cars it was only ever TVR for me from a young age; all my mates wanted ferraris and lambo's but for me it was only ever TVR.
It was pretty obvious with the wind turbine idea and smolenskis statement that he'd given up was the final nail in the coffin but it doesn't seem enough to let that memory rest.
Fair play to Dom for looking in to getting the jigs back however most indy's over here have replica jigs anyway... presumably just not the number of them to begin any sort of consistent production line.
I have plenty of very strong opinionated views on TVRs previous problems and the retention of the marque in its deceased form which won't sit well in this forum. However, the one thing I will say is support your local indy, keep as many running as we can and just let the TVR of old rest peacefully. Heart Breaking.
Frimley111R29 Nov 2012
£50 million to build a new car? And the bloody rest!!!