|Headquarters||Blackpool, United Kingdom|
|Area served||Europe , Japan|
|Products||Automobiles, Automotive parts|
||This article needs additional citations for verification. (August 2010)|
TVR was an independent British manufacturer of sports cars. Until 2006 it was based in the English seaside town of Blackpool, Lancashire, but has since split up into several smaller subsidiaries and has been relocated elsewhere. The company manufactured lightweight sports cars with powerful engines and was, at one time, the third-largest specialised sports car manufacturer in the world, offering a diverse range of coupés and convertibles. Most vehicles use an in-house straight-6 cylinder engine design; others an in-house V8. TVR sports cars are composed of tubular steel frames, cloaked in fibreglass bodywork.
TVR's two arms were TVR Engineering, which manufactures sports cars and grand tourers, and TVR Power, their powertrain division. The company has had a turbulent recent history and had not made any new cars since 2006.
In July 2012, owner Nikolay Smolensky announced that despite analysing various potential plans to create a new car, building a new TVR model was not going to be financially viable, thus bringing TVR's existence as a car manufacturer to an end.
Trevor Wilkinson (14 May 1923–6 June 2008)  was born in Blackpool and left school at 14 to start an engineering apprenticeship at a local garage. In 1946 he bought a wheelwright's business in Blackpool, renaming it Trevcar Motors in 1947, for the purpose of selling and repairing cars and light engineering.
In 1947, Wilkinson built his first car, a special two-seater body on an Alvis Firebird chassis for himself. As a result, Wilkinson with partner Jack Pickard then started a separate company, TVR Engineering, with a name derived from Wilkinson's name – TreVoR. Their first car was an alloy-bodied two seater on a tubular chassis, which appeared in 1949.
In 1953 the concept of glass-reinforced plastic bodywork over a tubular steel backbone chassis was accepted, and continued throughout TVR's current production history. In 1954, TVR Engineering was renamed TVR, in light of the launch of the first "production" car called the Mk1, later name Grantura. The glass fibre body design and layout remained, in modified form, until replaced by the angular wedge design Tasmin in 1980.
"Out of the blue, in 1956, an American racing enthusiast asked Wilkinson to produce a special chassis for sports car racing in the United States."  The early cars were marketed there as the Jomar:
"The JOMAR COUPE is the result of a joint Anglo-American project. The firm of T.V.R. Engineering of Blackpool, England is responsible for the basic-designing and building of the JOMAR chassis upon which in 1956 and 1957 Saidel Sports-Racing cars of Manchester, N.H., using aluminum bodies of their own design carried out extensive research and development. Through the efforts of both concerns the successful MK2 was evolved." 
A 1958 advertisement by Saidel Sports-Racing Cars, 52-56 Merrimack Street, Manchester, N.H., offered two distinct models. Firstly the Jomar MK2, a sports racing car, with either fibreglass or aluminum bodywork and 1,098 c.c. engine, only 930 lbs and "Outhandles Everything." Secondly the Jomar Coupe, an 1,172 c.c. fixed-head sports car. These cars utilised the same chassis.
On 10 January 1958, the T.V.R. coupe made its first public appearance at Quicks showroom in Manchester, England: "The designers are Mr. Trevor Wilkinson and Mr. Bernard Williams, who run the T.V.R. engineering company at Layton, Blackpool, and who have been making chassis for special car builders for some years. A little over two years ago they were asked by the American racing car enthusiast, Mr. Raymond Saidel, of Manchester, New Hampshire, to design a racing chassis. For twelve months this chassis was tested and improved on tracks in the United States and in the last year a team of six T.V.R.s has been racing regularly in the United States."  Competition Press reported: "Jomar has gone into Formula racing, too. The Jomar Monoposto has been designed by Ray and is built in his Manchester N.H. shop (the sports car chassis are built for him in England)." In 1959 Motor Sport reported: "The cars are made in Blackpool and the majority of the production is exported to America, where the sports version is known as the Jomar." 
At the launch TVRs were powered by 4-cylinder engines from Coventry Climax, or Ford, the performance models having Shorrock superchargers. BMC-engined models came later. As with many other British sports cars, engine sizes remained under two litres, and all produced less than 100 bhp (75 kW). As most TVRs were sold in the domestic British market, to avoid a British tax on assembled cars many of the early cars were sold in kit form – a practice which continued until the 1970s, when the tax loophole was closed and the kit-form option removed. At Le Mans in June 1962 on a very hot day a TVR was entered as #31 with 1.6 litre BMC engine but retired after only 3 laps with loss of coolant.
In April 1962 Wilkinson and Pickard left the company to set up a specialist fibre-glass engineering business. On retirement, Wilkinson moved to Minorca, Spain, where he died aged 85, on 6 June 2008.
1960s and 1970s 
In the 1960s, American motor dealer Jack Griffith decided to put a 4.7 litre V8 engine from an AC Cobra he owned into a TVR Grantura, in much the same way that V8s were first transplanted into AC Cobras. Jack distributed his cars (the Griffith 200 and Griffith 400) independently in the US, while they were sold in the UK as the TVR Griffith, and then as the TVR Tuscan once Griffith Motors went into receivership.
Powered by the same engine was the Trident, a luxury sports car with a steel and aluminium body that was designed by Carrozzeria Fissore in Savigliano, Italy, and was built by hand. A prototype coupé was shown at the Geneva Motor Show in 1965. A total of three coupés and a convertible were made between 1964 and 1966, but due to financial problems the rights on the car finally went to a TVR dealer, W. J. (Bill) Last (Viking Performance). He established in 1966 Trident Cars Ltd and started building the car under the model name of Clipper.
Under the ownership of Martin Lilley from 1965, TVR returned to Ford for a 2994 cc V6 Zodiac engine for the new TVR Tuscan (1967) racer. This produced 128 bhp (95 kW), giving a 0–60 mph (0–97 km/h) time of 8.3 seconds, which was good performance for the time.
The 1970s saw a number of engines used in TVRs (particularly the 'M Series'), mainly Triumph 2500s, Ford Essex V6 and Ford 1600 Crossflows. The M was followed by the Tasmins, the first of the long running Wedge series.
Wheeler ownership 
In the 1980s, under the ownership of Peter Wheeler, a chemical industry consultant and TVR enthusiast, TVR moved away from naturally aspirated and turbocharged V6s back to large V8s, namely the Rover V8. Capacity grew from 3.5 to 5 litres.
In 1988 TVR sourced a 5.0 litre Holden V8 through Tom Walkinshaw at Holden Special Vehicles. The engine was installed in the TVR White Elephant, a prototype car built for Wheeler by John Ravenscroft. Whilst an interesting engineering and styling exercise, the Holden powered TVR White Elephant was later superseded by the Rover V8 powered Griffith prototype.
In the 1990s, TVR Power modified a number of Rover V8s, but subsequently developed an in-house engine design. The AJP8 engine, a lightweight alloy V8, was developed by engineering consultant Al Melling along with John Ravenscroft and Peter Wheeler (hence the AJP initials), a notable achievement for a small maker. The new engine was originally destined for the Griffith and Chimaera models, but development took longer than expected and eventually became available in the Cerbera and Tuscan race cars.
Perhaps more significantly, Wheeler was instrumental in the body design of TVR cars during his ownership. He managed a design team that produced a number of acclaimed and resolved body designs including the Chimaera, Griffith, Cerbera, Tuscan, Tamora, T350, Typhon and Sagaris. These attention grabbing designs helped to keep TVR on the front covers of magazines around the world and in the public eye.
Wheeler subsequently directed the design of a straight-six derivative of the AJP8 that would be cheaper to produce and maintain than the eight. This engine, designed initially by by Al Melling and then significantly altered before final production by TVR/ John Ravenscroft, became known as the TVR Speed Six engine, and powers current TVRs.
Smolensky ownership 
In July 2004, 24-year-old Nikolay Smolensky bought the company from Wheeler, for a rumoured £15 million. Despite his Russian nationality, Smolensky said he intended TVR to remain a British company.
In April 2006, responding to falling demand and with production rumoured to have dropped from 12 cars a week to 3 or 4, TVR laid off some of its 300 staff. At the same time, the firm announced plans to move to updated facilities in the Squires Gate district of Blackpool, citing impending expiry of the lease of the current factory in late 2006, where owner Peter Wheeler was said to be planning to build a housing estate.
In October 2006 Smolensky announced that body production and final assembly for TVR would move to Turin with only engine production remaining in the UK. In protest at this and to show support for the workers, a large number of TVR owners paraded through central London on 26 November 2006. Dubbed "London Thunder", it was also an attempt at the official world record for the biggest one-marque convoy on record.
By December 2006, it emerged that Smolensky had split TVR into a number of different companies;
- Brand and intellectual property rights had been transferred to a core Smolensky company
- TVR Motors – held the licence to the brands and intellectual property in the UK, as well as sales and marketing of the brand
- TVR Power – the parts and spares business had been sold to a management buyout
- Blackpool Automotive – the factory and manufacturing assets
On 13 December, Smolensky and production director Mike Penny resigned as directors of Blackpool Automotive, being replaced by Smolensky UK personal assistant Roger Billinghurst and 25-year-old Austrian Angelco Stamenkov. By 24 December Blackpool Automotive was in administration. Administrators are now seeking legal clarification on the ownership of certain assets, including the brand and intellectual property, to see what assets the company has and who should pay the redundancy notices of the remaining 200 workers.
Recent events 
On 22 February 2007 it was revealed that Smolensky was once again the owner of the company, having been the highest bidder. On 28 February 2007, less than one week after reacquiring TVR, he reportedly announced plans to sell the company to Adam Burdette and Jean Michel Santacreu, who intended to export TVRs to the United States.
On 8 October 2007 it was found that Smolensky was still in control of the company and was hoping to restart production, with a target of 2,000 cars to be sold in 2008. and on 11 July TVR announced the relaunching of the Sagaris as the Sagaris 2, at its new centre near Wesham in Lancashire, though this did not happen and the company took no action for another two years. In June 2010 German manufacturer Gullwing, a specialist German firm which held a minority share in TVR, said they would start producing a new car from September 2010. Boss Juergen Mohr said "Having been a TVR owner, I think this will be the best TVR ever." He also confirmed the company was planning new models, possibly with alternative drivetrains. "I can imagine everything, even electric-powered cars," Mohr said.
On 11 May 2011 TVR Motors' new holding page appeared online, displaying the new TVR Motors logo. They are also offering to overhaul all TVRs, Griffen to Sagaris, and will be taking offers to make Sagaris, Tuscan convertible, Tuscan MK II, Cerbera, Chimaera and Griffith to individual specifications. All cars feature a new GM 6.2L LS3, 426 bhp 420 lb/ft V8 engine, and a reinforced 5-speed gearbox.
Final closure 
On 12 July 2012 Nikolay Smolensky confirmed a permanent end to TVR car production, stating that costs were now too high and customer demands too low for the business to operate profitably. The TVR name is now likely to be used on a new line of portable wind turbines.
Ownership history 
The history of the company can be divided into four eras, based on ownership:
- 1947–1965, founder Trevor Wilkinson, who left in 1962
- 1965–1981, Martin Lilley
- 1981–2004, Peter Wheeler
- 2004–2012, Nikolay Smolensky
Model list 
Ford 100E Sidevalve
|TVR Open Sports / Coupe||1956–1957||Coventry Climax
Ford 100E Sidevalve
|TVR Grantura I||1958–1960||Coventry Climax FWA
Coventry Climax FWE
Ford 100E Sidevalve
|TVR Grantura II||1960–1961||Coventry Climax FWE
Ford Kent 105E
|TVR Grantura IIa||1961–1962||Coventry Climax FWE
Ford Kent 105E
Ford Kent 109E
|TVR Grantura III||1962–1963||BMC B-Series||1622 cc|
|TVR Grantura III 1800||1963–1965||BMC B-Series||1798 cc|
|TVR Grantura 1800S||1964–1966||BMC B-Series||1798 cc|
|TVR Trident||1964–1966||Ford Windsor V8||4727 cc|
|TVR Griffith 2001||1963–1964||Ford Windsor V8||4727 cc|
|TVR Griffith 4001||1964–1967||Ford Windsor V8||4727 cc|
|TVR Grantura IV 1800S||1966–1967||BMC B-Series||1798 cc|
|TVR Tuscan V8||1967–1970||Ford Windsor V8||4727 cc|
|TVR Tuscan V6||1969–1971||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR Vixen S1||1967–1968||Ford Kent
|TVR Vixen S2||1968–1969||Ford Kent||1599 cc|
|TVR Vixen S3||1970–1972||Ford Kent||1599 cc|
|TVR Vixen 1300||1971–1972||Triumph I4||1296 cc|
|TVR Vixen 2500||1971–1972||Triumph I6||2498 cc|
|TVR Vixen S4||1972||Ford Kent||1599 cc|
|Ford Kent I4||1599 cc|
|TVR 2500M||1972–1977||Triumph I6||2498 cc|
|TVR 3000M||1971–1979||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR 3000M Turbo||1975–1979||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR Taimar||1976–1979||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR Taimar Turbo||1976–1979||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR 3000S||1978–1979||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR 3000S Turbo||1978–1979||Ford Essex V6||2994 cc|
|TVR Tasmin 200||1981–1984||Ford Pinto I4||1993 cc|
|TVR Tasmin 280i||1980–1984||Ford Cologne V6||2792 cc|
|TVR 280i||1984–1987||Ford Cologne V6||2792 cc|
|TVR 350i||1983–1989||TVR/Rover V8||3528 cc|
|TVR 350SX||1985–1989||TVR/Rover V8
+ Sprintex Supercharger
|TVR 400SX||1989||TVR/Rover V8
+ Sprintex Supercharger
|TVR 350SE||1990–1991||TVR/Rover V8||3947 cc|
|TVR 390SE||1984–1988||TVR/Rover V8||3905 cc|
|TVR 400SE||1988–1991||TVR/Rover V8||3948 cc|
|TVR 420SE||1986–1987||TVR/Rover V8||4228 cc|
|TVR 450SE||1989–1990||TVR/Rover V8||4441 cc|
|TVR 420SEAC||1986–1988||TVR/Rover V8||4228 cc|
|TVR 450SEAC||1988–1989||TVR/Rover V8||4441 cc|
|TVR S||1986–1988||Ford Cologne V6||2792 cc|
|TVR S2||1989–1990||Ford Cologne V6||2933 cc|
|TVR S3(C)||1991–1992||Ford Cologne V6||2933 cc|
|TVR S4C||1993–1993||Ford Cologne V6||2933 cc|
|TVR V8S||1991–1993||TVR/Rover V8||3948 cc|
|TVR Griffith||1992–2002||TVR/Rover V8||3948 cc
|TVR Chimaera||1992–2001||TVR/Rover V8||3948 cc
|TVR Cerbera||1996–2003||AJP8 / Speed Eight||4185 cc
|1996–2003||Speed Six||3996 cc|
|TVR T400||2001–2007||Speed Six||3996 cc|
|TVR Tamora||2002–2006||Speed Six||3605 cc|
|TVR T350 (Targa & Coupe)||2003–2006||Speed Six||3605 cc|
|TVR Tuscan||1999–2006||Speed Six||3605 cc
|TVR Sagaris||2004–2006||Speed Six||3996 cc|
|TVR Typhon||2004||Speed Six||3996 cc|
|TVR Sagaris||2004–2006||Speed Six||3996 cc|
|TVR Cerbera Speed 122/3||1997||Speed Twelve||7730 cc|
|TVR Tuscan Speed 122/3||TVR Speed Twelve||7730 cc|
|TVR Tuscan Challenge3||1989–(around 100 made)||Rover V8/Speed Eight||4500 cc|
|TVR T400R/Typhon GT3||?|
1 – Not technically a TVR model; a TVR chassis bodied by Ray Saidel.
2 – Never went into production.
3 – Built exclusively for racing.
Two TVRs at the Northampton & Lamport Railway during a Car show held at the railway
Tuscan Challenge racing car
See also 
- "Trevor Wilkinson". The Daily Telegraph (London). 9 June 2008. Retrieved 26 May 2010.
- "Trevor Wilkinson, founder of TVR sports car company, dies aged 85". Daily Mail. 2008-06-07. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
- Obituary: The Daily Telegraph, 9 June 2008.
- Sports Car Newsletter, S.C.C.A., November 30, 1957, No.33.
- Sports Car Journal, The Official Magazine of the California Sports Car Club, January 1958, Page 30.
- Sports Car Journal, The Official Magazine of the California Sports Car Club, January 1958, Page 4.
- The Manchester Guardian, 10 January 1958, Page 11.
- Competition Press, Vol.II-No.8, 25 April 1959, Page 2.
- Motor Sport, September 1959, Page 709.
- "TVR to move car production abroad". BBC News. 18 October 2006. Retrieved 26 May 2010.
- re. "italiaspeed.com". italiaspeed.com. Retrieved 2011-01-02.
- London Thunder
- "Focus TVR tsar roars off". The Times (London). 7 January 2007. Retrieved 26 May 2010.
- Laurance, Ben (7 January 2007). "Fight for control of TVR assets". The Times (London). Retrieved 26 May 2010.
- "Union anger as TVR is bought back". BBC News. 22 February 2007. Retrieved 26 May 2010.
- 28 February 2007 (2007-02-28). "Autocar – Smolenski's out. Again". Autocar.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-01-02.
- 8 October 2007 (2007-10-08). "Autocar – TVR: new models on sale by 2008". Autocar.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-01-02.
- "Return of TVR | Auto Express News | News". Auto Express. Retrieved 2011-01-02.
- "A sad day: TVR is officially no more". Autocar. 13 July 2012. Retrieved 14 July 2012.
- Filby, Peter (2010).TVR - The Early Years, Autocraft Books, Reigate. ISBN 978-0-9545729-1-4.
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