Say goodnight to the wild guy. TVR is officially out of the car making business.
There are plenty who don’t know the irreverent car builders once out of Blackpool, England, and those who do are thinking this posting is about five years too late.
Trevor Wilkinson started producing cars in the 1950s (TVR was named after three letter from Wilkinson’s first name.) The cars were known for their lightweight fiberglass bodies, powerful engines, and notorious unreliability. They were an interesting status symbol of a semi-affordable, hand-built machine for people who cared more about pure sporting than making it to work every day.
By the time Russian boy wonder Nikolay Smolensky purchased the firm in 2004, TVR was building its wildest creations that made little practical sense at all. This point is driven home by Jeremy Clarkson while testing the new Sagarisis:
As practical as the Sagarisis was (at least for TVR) the sales were not there. By 2007 the whole operation was bust.
So that’s where the story should end, but Smolensky held on and occasionally would give interviews about future plans. There were talks of moving production to Germany and building Corvette and BMW-powered machines…but now that’s all over.
Smolensky announced last week that the production costs would be too high, and customer demand was too low. So now the TVR name will be used on portable wind turbines.
We could sum up the life of TVR, but we’re not too sure this is the full end. When the days of disposal income again, there will be people who want absurd machines. When the crazies come out of the woodwork with checkbooks in hand TVR will likely once again be there.