After what’s felt like years of teasing, British sports car manufacturer TVR has finally revealed its first new car since 2005 – the TVR Griffith.
Perhaps the most surprising thing here is that the Griffith looks so, uh, normal. Aside from the exhaust poking out right behind the front wheels, it’s remarkably conventional. Like it was styled by an actual car designer, not three drunk men in a shed. If it weren’t for the badge on the front, most people would have no idea that this car will be made by the same company that sold the Sagaris and the Tuscan Speed Six.
Of course, that probably has a lot to do with the fact that TVR brought in Gordon Murray, the man responsible for the McLaren F1, to design the Griffith. While we doubt Murray used the F1 for inspiration here, we do see a little bit of other modern McLarens in the headlights. The rest of the car, from the hood to the roofline, almost looks generic. Like TVR’s owners tried a little too hard to stay away from anything potentially controversial. The rear might raise some eyebrows with its Viper-meets-LFA styling, but that’s about it. The design may grow on us over time, but for now, we’re not sure how we feel.
Even if you’re not a big fan of how the car looks, we have a feeling you’ll be much more interested in how it drives. The body and chassis are made from carbon composite, making the entire car extremely light. TVR says it weighs only 2,756 pounds, about 400 pounds more than a Mazda Miata. But unlike a Miata, the Griffith also packs a 5.0-liter Cosworth-tuned V-8 that churns out 500 hp. TVR claims 60 mph (96 kph) arrives in less than 4 seconds with the six-speed manual transmission, and if you have enough track to keep going, you’ll break the 200-mph (320-kph) barrier. Expect handling to be just as impressive thanks to a 50:50 weight distribution and the aforementioned 2,700-pound curb weight.
Plus, as far as low-volume, carbon-fiber sports cars capable of breaking 200 mph go, the Griffith is surprisingly affordable. TVR quotes a base price, which works out to about $118,000 at the current exchange rate. Sadly, it doesn’t appear that there are any plans to sell the Griffith in the US at the moment.