T350 Engine Query

Author
Discussion

Cyclone1

Original Poster:

2,591 posts

226 months

Monday 18th July
quotequote all
Hi,

It’s been quite a while since I’ve considered a TVR, but have been recently taken with the T350.

With regards to the engine, then from past knowledge I’m aware that quite a few required rebuilds at some point, but was there a sweet spot in the production where the engines were “ok” (e.g. 2004 onwards), or is it a case of judging the quality engine by engine.

If buying a T350, is a car with its original engine just as good as one that has had a rebuild?

There are also many rebuild options so suspect they range from a straight rebuild like for like, through to the larger capacity versions. The builders are of high repute (taken from the FAQ) which is a big positive.

Cheers Jules

monty quick

226 posts

216 months

Tuesday 19th July
quotequote all
There will be better informed replies than mine but you are correct that ‘some’ of the early Speed6 engines had material weaknesses. To be honest, anything that needed a rebuild will have been done by now.
Care during warm-up is essential and of course you will have no idea if previous owners had adhered to this. However, if the car is owned by an enthusiast and has clearly been well looked after, it will probably suggest that the engine has not been red-lined until correctly warmed up.
I believe there are oil checks available that monitor how much metal is present (lots of metal = knackered engine) but I have never used these.
I have a T350T with over 30,000 miles and it runs like a dream. I have seen posts on here of Speed6 engines doing over 100,000miles without a rebuild.
If a car has a rebuilt engine it is really important that the work has been carried out by a specialist. There are a few but Powers seem to have the best reputation and offer a fantastic warranty.
Good luck

robsco

7,450 posts

156 months

Tuesday 19th July
quotequote all
I recognise your name from the Cerbera forum from a few years ago Cyclone, glad to hear you are looking at coming back to the fold! In my view, model year is no guarantee of quality. It is a Speed Six, and if it hasn't had a rebuild, there's an infinitesimal chance that it won't in the near future. There will be some that will rush to their individual car's aids, as we all would, but realism needs to be a factor. The chances that you can find a car, even a late one, which will do more than 40k before a rebuild, is a pipe dream in my view. And even if by some miracle it isn't, would you be prepared to take the chance?

What I would say is that of all the TVRs I've owned or driven, the T350 is by far and away the best all round package (in T form at least). That Speed Six engine is a true delight, despite its obvious flaws. There are a few 4 litre cars out there now, those that have had rebuilds to that spec etc, but in my opinion the 3.6 is a sweeter, freer revving engine - and they do appear to be slightly less at risk of failure also.


Cyclone1

Original Poster:

2,591 posts

226 months

Friday 22nd July
quotequote all
monty quick said:
There will be better informed replies than mine but you are correct that ‘some’ of the early Speed6 engines had material weaknesses. To be honest, anything that needed a rebuild will have been done by now.
Care during warm-up is essential and of course you will have no idea if previous owners had adhered to this. However, if the car is owned by an enthusiast and has clearly been well looked after, it will probably suggest that the engine has not been red-lined until correctly warmed up.
I believe there are oil checks available that monitor how much metal is present (lots of metal = knackered engine) but I have never used these.
I have a T350T with over 30,000 miles and it runs like a dream. I have seen posts on here of Speed6 engines doing over 100,000miles without a rebuild.
If a car has a rebuilt engine it is really important that the work has been carried out by a specialist. There are a few but Powers seem to have the best reputation and offer a fantastic warranty.
Good luck
Thanks for the info and reply.

Cyclone1

Original Poster:

2,591 posts

226 months

Friday 22nd July
quotequote all
robsco said:
I recognise your name from the Cerbera forum from a few years ago Cyclone, glad to hear you are looking at coming back to the fold! In my view, model year is no guarantee of quality. It is a Speed Six, and if it hasn't had a rebuild, there's an infinitesimal chance that it won't in the near future. There will be some that will rush to their individual car's aids, as we all would, but realism needs to be a factor. The chances that you can find a car, even a late one, which will do more than 40k before a rebuild, is a pipe dream in my view. And even if by some miracle it isn't, would you be prepared to take the chance?

What I would say is that of all the TVRs I've owned or driven, the T350 is by far and away the best all round package (in T form at least). That Speed Six engine is a true delight, despite its obvious flaws. There are a few 4 litre cars out there now, those that have had rebuilds to that spec etc, but in my opinion the 3.6 is a sweeter, freer revving engine - and they do appear to be slightly less at risk of failure also.
Hi Robsco,

Yes I spent a lot of time on the Cerbera section of PH around 15-18 years ago and loved both Cerberas.

Thanks for the advice and guidance. So are you saying that an original S6 engine will at some point need a rebuild? Even ones that have done say 30k miles since new? Alternative advice I’ve had is that if they haven’t failed earlier in their life, then they are likely to be fine?

Looks like you’ve had a few T350’s and Tuscans so have good experience of the engine and models?

Cheers Jules.

shorts!

659 posts

234 months

Friday 22nd July
quotequote all
For another perspective.....
I have a T350 that reached 160k before needing a top up rebuild, the bottom was done at 240K ish. I'm sure that many cars will never do this sort of mileage. Obviously everyone talks from their own experience but not every engine will need a rebuild at an unreasonably low mileage.
Given the age of any of these cars a slightly higher mileage car is more sure to have its issues/ niggles sorted.

Cyclone1

Original Poster:

2,591 posts

226 months

Friday 22nd July
quotequote all
shorts! said:
For another perspective.....
I have a T350 that reached 160k before needing a top up rebuild, the bottom was done at 240K ish. I'm sure that many cars will never do this sort of mileage. Obviously everyone talks from their own experience but not every engine will need a rebuild at an unreasonably low mileage.
Given the age of any of these cars a slightly higher mileage car is more sure to have its issues/ niggles sorted.
Impressive! 240k miles, you must be using the car nine stop. Appreciate the advice and always good to get a balanced view.

Zippee

12,943 posts

214 months

Friday 22nd July
quotequote all
My old T350 was a 54 plate and required a rebuild at around 20k. The engine itself was in perfect health but the half time bearing failed and that lunched it. I know a few owners who subsequently upgraded their half time bearings at service time to stop this happening

shorts!

659 posts

234 months

Friday 22nd July
quotequote all
Cyclone1 said:
Impressive! 240k miles, you must be using the car nine stop. Appreciate the advice and always good to get a balanced view.
It was my only car for a long time. Just booked it in for it's 300,000 mile service........

robsco

7,450 posts

156 months

Tuesday 26th July
quotequote all
Cyclone1 said:
robsco said:
I recognise your name from the Cerbera forum from a few years ago Cyclone, glad to hear you are looking at coming back to the fold! In my view, model year is no guarantee of quality. It is a Speed Six, and if it hasn't had a rebuild, there's an infinitesimal chance that it won't in the near future. There will be some that will rush to their individual car's aids, as we all would, but realism needs to be a factor. The chances that you can find a car, even a late one, which will do more than 40k before a rebuild, is a pipe dream in my view. And even if by some miracle it isn't, would you be prepared to take the chance?

What I would say is that of all the TVRs I've owned or driven, the T350 is by far and away the best all round package (in T form at least). That Speed Six engine is a true delight, despite its obvious flaws. There are a few 4 litre cars out there now, those that have had rebuilds to that spec etc, but in my opinion the 3.6 is a sweeter, freer revving engine - and they do appear to be slightly less at risk of failure also.
Hi Robsco,

Yes I spent a lot of time on the Cerbera section of PH around 15-18 years ago and loved both Cerberas.

Thanks for the advice and guidance. So are you saying that an original S6 engine will at some point need a rebuild? Even ones that have done say 30k miles since new? Alternative advice I’ve had is that if they haven’t failed earlier in their life, then they are likely to be fine?

Looks like you’ve had a few T350’s and Tuscans so have good experience of the engine and models?

Cheers Jules.
Hi Jules. That would be my version of events, yes. Admittedly mine is a small sample size compared to a specialist who sees, sells and services the cars every day, but these are my records of Speed Six engined cars, with mileages and rebuilds:

Rebuilt @ 28k miles (2001 car)
Rebuilt @ 13k miles (2004 car)
Rebuilt twice by the time I bought the car at 11k miles (2003 car)
Rebuilt @ 15k miles (2000 car)
No rebuild @ 5k miles (2005 car)
No rebuild @ 20k miles (2004 car)
Rebuild @ 11k miles (2001 car)
Rebuild @ 9k miles (2003 car)

Thankfully I only paid for one of those!! I do notice that the later engines do appear smoother and less "valvetrain-y", though whether that extends to an actual increase in longevity I am not sure.




Cyclone1

Original Poster:

2,591 posts

226 months

Saturday 6th August
quotequote all
robsco said:
Hi Jules. That would be my version of events, yes. Admittedly mine is a small sample size compared to a specialist who sees, sells and services the cars every day, but these are my records of Speed Six engined cars, with mileages and rebuilds:

Rebuilt @ 28k miles (2001 car)
Rebuilt @ 13k miles (2004 car)
Rebuilt twice by the time I bought the car at 11k miles (2003 car)
Rebuilt @ 15k miles (2000 car)
No rebuild @ 5k miles (2005 car)
No rebuild @ 20k miles (2004 car)
Rebuild @ 11k miles (2001 car)
Rebuild @ 9k miles (2003 car)

Thankfully I only paid for one of those!! I do notice that the later engines do appear smoother and less "valvetrain-y", though whether that extends to an actual increase in longevity I am not sure.
Hi Rob,

Great reply and appreciate the info. Makes clear sense now and can see why you’d recommend caution.

Still very interested though, but will tread carefully.

Jules