Searching for a contemporary review of a car you’re interested in is standard practice, but finding a review of the exact machine you’ve come across is probably not. However, in the case of the yellow Tamora advertised in PH’s classifieds, that’s exactly what we have - it’s TVR’s ex-press demonstrator. One that was driven and photographed by much of the UK media when it wore the company’s TVR 100 private reg plate. That’s not up for any debate; whether that’s a good thing or not, though, is another matter…
Some may argue that a press car will have been thrashed to within an inch of its life all too regularly by the Matt Birds of this industry, but others will see it as a car that’s been cherished and exquisitely maintained during its time on the TVR fleet. For its first year of life at least, we can assume it was regularly serviced and kept flawless, what with its responsibility being to uphold TVR’s honour as its junior sports car and impress the cynical British media.
From what we can see – and what the seller tells us – this car has had it good. Its Halcyon Midas Pearl paintwork is certainly gleaming in the pictures, and there’s mention of a full service history. The car has also had a recent professional detailing and been ceramic coated, so it seems the latest custodian has cared greatly for it – which bodes well for the maintenance of its most significant (and potentially costly) parts. Namely, that 3.6-litre straight-six and its Tuscan-derived tubular steel chassis.
In fact – and as you’ll likely know – most of what lies beneath the Tamora’s curvaceous fibreglass body is Tuscan-derived; engine and suspension, too. But while the Tuscan went head-to-head with the market’s biggest sports cars, the Tamora targeted the likes of Porsche’s Boxster and Mercedes’s SLK32 AMG. That meant it essentially picked up where the Griffith left off in 2002, building on its daily usability and affordability for the 21st century.
This was all relatively speaking, of course, with the Tamora’s Speed Six motor – TVR’s brutish in-house alloy lump – initially being unreliable until it was updated in 2003, signalling alarm bells for our early run, ex-press machine. But we’d like to think TVR applied its improvements to the former fleet machine; no doubt that’s something to check, but the fact it’s apparently still running healthy is at least promising.
Despite using a 3.6-litre motor, the Tamora’s construction enables it to weigh in at just 1,060kg; as such, the 0-62mph dash takes just 4.2 seconds and top speed is 175mph. This is serious performance, which will only feel more intense with the wind in your hair and nothing to save your blushes. Its pared-back nature ensured the Tamora stood out against its rivals back in the noughties – and leaves it looking more exciting than those old rivals as a used prospect for a buyer in 2020.
It wants to be, too, as £33,000 is an awful lot more than any of those rivals from the turn of the 21st century. But that just goes to show in what high regard the late TVRs are now held, and this is one of the more special. For the TVR faithful (and where else will they be but here?), a machine that’s featured in magazines and on TV during the Tamora’s production run has to be a particularly notable one. Not only do you have an exciting piece of Blackpool engineering, you’ve a key part of its history, a car you can have hanging on your wall and parked in the garage at the same time.
TVR TAMORA | SPECIFICATION
Engine: 3,605cc, straight-six
Transmission: 5-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 355@7,200rpm
Torque (lb ft): 290@5,500rpm
First registered: 2002
Recorded mileage: 38,000
Price new: £36,500
Yours for: £32,995
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