Tuscan Race Car

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Road Conversion

TVR are rather fond of the name 'Tuscan'. First used by them back in the 1960's, it was brought back for the in the late 80's for this road/race car. This Tuscan was originally intended as a road car but ended up as pure racer.

After Peter Wheeler had toyed with the idea of the 'ES' (a 3.8 litre Holden V6 engined 'S') - he came up with the even more potent formula of the Tuscan. A chassis was developed from the 'S's. In fact it developed into a completely new chassis. With a wider track, increased wheelbase and much strengthening, the new car could cope with extreme power outputs of the tuned Rover V8's that TVR favoured at the time.

Originally it used the V8 from the 350i Wedge producing almost 350 bhp. Nine inch wide wheels attempted to transmit the power to the road. Orginally the Borg Warner T5 gearbox was used as this could easily cope with the power output. This was the same 'box that was being used in the Sierra Cosworths of the time.

The Tuscan was previewed at the 1988 NEC motor show in Birmingham at which TVR announced a one-make race series to promote the car. As an incentive the car was priced at an incredibly low 16,000 + VAT. However this price was conditional upon the purchaser competing in at least six of the twelve races in the championship. Should that condition not be met, then a further 16,000 would be payable at the end of the season.

As for the road version - sadly it never happened. Production of the 'S' model and the older wedges was keeping TVR very busy. Much of the design work was fed into the Griffith and Chimaera models.

A few years later the engine was replaced with the TVR built AJP8 engine. Peter Wheeler had been concerned that the Rover V8 was getting near the limits of development. It's also rumoured that he didn't wish a German engine (Rover had been taken over by BMW) to be installed in his cars. After an encounter with engine designer Al Melling an alliance was formed to develop a new V8 for TVR. From this alliance the AJP8 was born (as were the Speed-6 and Speed-12 engines). TVR have now taken on the development of the engine in-house. Use of the AJP8 produced a decidedly scary 536 bhp/tonne power to weight ratio, a fact that's core to the Tuscan Challenge formula.

Model Engine Power Torque Weight Max Speed 0 - 60 mph 0 - 100 mph 1/4 mile
Tuscan V8 Rover V8 4441cc 348bhp 279lbs/ft ~800kg 157mph 4.0 secs 8.9 secs 12.2 secs/ 118mph
Tuscan Speed-8 AJP V8 450bhp 380lbs/ft 840kg 190mph 3.3 secs 6.9 secs n/a