Good Oil: TVR is back
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TVR planning on unleashing a new model? Sigh. Forgive us a modicum of cynicism here but we’ve been down this road before.
And TVR fans should know better, too. There is no actual car to see, beyond a couple of fanciful sketches. But deposits have been received nevertheless.
A certain type of car fan, you see, wants TVR to succeed. It’s the plucky battler of that British strain of low volume car manufacturer … except the Blackpool-headquartered brand hasn’t been battling well over the past 10 years and, basically, continues to exist in name only.
In fact, there hasn’t been an actual new TVR — one you can sit in, drive and then call a tow truck to recover when it inevitably breaks down — since 2006.
And yet, pronouncements exclaiming the company’s intent to release new models occur like clockwork every few years.
We must say, however, with clever-clogs designer Gordon Murray and his iStream modular manufacturing system cited as part of TVR’s latest comeback plan, it is certainly boxing cleverer than before.
The new car will apparently be powered by a Cosworth-tuned 5.0-litre V8 producing 357kW, and will be capable of sprints from zero to 100 km/h in less than four seconds.
The new model, alleges TVR, will also boast a top speed of more than 300km/h and a curb weight of about 1200kg.
When will anyone see this great new hope for TVR?
Those registering their interest in buying one will hope to see some semblance of sheet metal soon.
But for the rest of us, TVR has promised it will display the car at the upcoming Goodwood Revival in September this year.
Here’s hoping, although we’re not holding our breath.
A compact Bugatti for the shopping
Photo / Supplied
When you don’t want to take the low-slung Veyron or Chiron into the city during peak-hour traffic, what is a Bugatti owner to do?
Designer Narendra Singh reckons a compact crossover could be just the ticket.
Of course, with seating for only two, it’s not the most practical of high-riding crossovers.
Then again, the word “practical” has never been in the same post code as anything to do with Bugatti.
You have to admire the way the essence of the recently released Chiron hypercar is captured here, with roof scoops, signature grille and brightwork all present and accounted for.
There’s no word from the designer on what might be under the bonnet. Given that — as far as anyone is aware, the design study is to remain just that — it’s probably a moot point.
We imagine the power-to-weight ratio of the Chiron’s b1119kW/1600Nm 8.0-litre, 16-cylinder quad turbo engine in such a compact body would be ... well, probably uncontrollable.
Still, once upon a time people laughed at the notion of a Lamborghini SUV ...
Forget the 84 Olympics jet pack; Toyota is planning a flying car
Toyota is planning a flying car for Tokyo 2020. Photo / Supplied
You may remember, about a year ago, when patent application papers for what looked unmistakably like a crudely-drawn prototype flying car were leaked to media.
Ha, we all smirked; here we go. Some crackpot shed boffins with their head in the clouds still intent on bringing to fruition the flawed retro-futuristic dream of personal air travel in car-form.
Then everyone realised it was a patent application filed by Toyota.
As in Toyota, the biggest carmaker in the world. And the eyebrow-o-meter rose off the chart.
The idea won’t go away. Toyota has fessed up even more of its desire to bring airborne mobility to the family-themed masses.
And it has announced something of a deadline to make it a reality – in concept form at least; the Tokyo Summer Olympics in 2020.
Toyota wants the Olympic flame to be delivered to the 2020 games’ opening ceremony by flying car, no less.
It may even be piloted by a press-ganged athlete, who will no doubt be thinking “I didn’t sign up for this when I started playing [insert sport of choice here].”
But rather than a simple folly to titillate during the theatrics of the opening ceremony, Toyota means to continue with the flying car project well beyond 2020.
To that end, it has tied its tether rope to a start-up called Cartivator Resource Management.
The two companies are working on getting an initial piloted prototype airborne by 2019, with a view to showing off a streamlined and safety-checked version swooping and soaring (or at least stably hovering) above the heads of IOC dignitaries and before an audience of millions at the Tokyo Olympics the following year.
We’re not prepared to suggest the idea of the flying car remains anything but troubled at best, but part of us really hopes Toyota achieves its deadline.