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TVR Gold Portfolio, 1959-86


Tasmin S1 Fixed Head Coupe (1980-1981)

First on sale in 1980, the Tasmin was a fixed head two seater coupe. The styling was a radical departure for TVR, who were previously known for their curvaceous coupes and at that time for the good looking 3000S convertible. Why Tasmin? Well so the story goes (yet another TVR tale), Martin Lilley's girlfriend of the time was called Tasmin! Still, it could have been worse...

Tasmin Sprinting

As with all TVR's, the running gear was located in a space-frame tubular steel chassis which was longer and sturdier than that of the 'M' series. Much of the running gear is sourced from Ford's of the period. The suspension and steering was sourced from Ford Cortinas, with a TVR engineered rear wishbones. Gearboxes were from Cortinas and Sierras. Brakes were discs all round, wtih the front ones from the Ford Granada. The engine was the Ford 2.8 Cologne V6 with Bosch fuel injection producing about 150-160 bhp. An automatic gearbox was an option.

Tasmin 280i Convertible (1980-1988)

The convertible was launched in 1980. Mechanically identical to the FHC (Fixed Head Coupe), the body had a modified windscreen surround, new doors and a different boot arrangement, including storage for the hard targa panel that formed the overhead section of the roof. The targa panel can be removed and stored in the boot, allowing the rear section to be left up, giving some protection for motorway type journies, or folded down to give the toal roof off experience. This roof arrangement has been used on all convertible TVR's since.

Around 1988, shortly after the launch of the TVR 'S', production of the 280i ceased. The 'S' was cheaper than the wedge, and was proving extremely popular, at the expense of the 280i which was using the same engine.

Tasmin 200 (1981-1984)

The 200 was introduced around the time when when Peter Wheeler took over at TVR. It had become apparent that the Tasmin was proving more expensive to make than the previous 'M' models, and sales were suffering. A lower specification, smaller engined Tasmin   appeared, using the Ford Pinto (again an engine with Capri/Cortina heritage). Pinto's weren't exactly powerful, producing in the region of one hundred bhp in standard form. Not surprisingly this model wasn't popular and production stopped in 1984. In total 16 only coupes and 45 convertibles were made.

Tasmin +2 (1981-1985)

The +2 is a rare car, with around fifty models being produced the majority being the 2.8 litre version and six made with the V8 from the 350i. The original two seater had two fuel tanks either side of the main transmission tunnel. For the +2 a single fuel tank was mounted above the rear wheels, freeing up space to extend the cabin.

Tasmin S2 / 280i (1981-1985)

The S2 model evolved from the S1 and ironed out some of the glitches of the first cars. In 1983, with the 350 ready for launch, the Tasmin name was dropped and the model was merely called the 280i.

Tasmin in the USA

US spec TasminThe Tasmin was the last TVR to be exported to the USA. TVR's inconsistent badging policy resulted in the cars appearing as Tasmins, Tasmin 280i's or 280i's (The Tasmin name was dropped in the UK). The last car was exported in 1987, this being a series II 280i. A number of reasons are cited for TVR's withdrawal from the US. These allegedly include a deteriorating relationship with the import agents and the distribution network, warranty problems and liability insurance premiums rising from $160K to over $1M.


Model Engine Power Torque Weight Max Speed 0 - 60 mph 0 - 100 mph
Tasmin S1 (FHC) manual Ford V6 2792 cc 160 bhp 162 lbs/ft 1074 kg 130 mph 8.0 secs 23.2 secs
Tasmin S1 (FHC)auto Ford V6 2792 cc 160 bhp 162 lbs/ft 1074 kg 130 mph 8.2 secs 23.2 secs
Tasmin S2/280i (FHC) Ford V6 2792 cc 150 bhp 162 lbs/ft 1074 kg 121 mph 8.0 secs 23.2 secs
Tasmin 280i (DHC) Ford V6 2792 cc 150 bhp 162 lbs/ft 1074 kg 121 mph 8.0 secs 23.7 secs
Tasmin 200 (FHC/DHC) Ford 'Pinto' 1993 cc 101 bhp 112 lbs/ft 971 kg