Posts Tagged ‘UK’

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The Founder of TVR Passes Away. RIP Trevor Wilkinson.

August 6, 2008

AS REPORTED IN THE NEW YORK TIMES:

A legend in his own right.

Trevor Wilkinson, the founder of TVR, the small British carmaker known for nimble little sports cars that early owners often assembled from a kit, died on June 6 in Minorca, Spain. He was 85.

His death was confirmed by Marshall Moore, the president of the TVR Car Club of North America.

The soft-spoken Mr. Wilkinson built his first car in 1947 as a race special and incorporated TVR Engineering (later simply TVR) the next year. The company name was a shortened version of his first name. In later years, the company was known for producing extroverted cars with outlandish names like Sagaris (a Persian-era battle-axe) and Cerbera (a derivative of Cerberus, the three-headed hound of hell).

Nothing resembling regular production began until the late 1950s, by which time Mr. Wilkinson had come up with the formula that served TVR well for the next several decades: a light tube chassis draped with oddly styled fiberglass bodywork. Mechanical components were a mishmash of parts from larger British manufacturers.

It all worked surprisingly well; early TVRs, while generally cramped and uncomfortable to drive on the street, proved to be capable weekend club racers. Because of a loophole in the British tax laws, TVRs of this era were available fully assembled or as a kit.

After the loophole was closed in 1970, most TVRs came fully assembled.

Mr. Wilkinson left the company in 1962, and TVR was sold to Martin Lilly in 1965.

Under Mr. Lilly’s stewardship, the company began to make an impression among American sports car enthusiasts.

From the start of regular production in the mid-1950s until 2006, TVR produced fewer than 30,000 cars, Mr. Moore estimated.

Mr. Wilkinson stayed in touch with TVR’s small fan base in the United States. He often attended club events, including the annual gathering of the TVR Car Club of North America. Mr. Moore said Mr. Wilkinson had been bemused by the size of the gatherings and the popularity of the cars in America and had admired the cars built by TVR’s subsequent owners.

The future of TVR is uncertain, with its factory in Blackpool closed since late 2006; there have been several failed attempts by the current owner, Nikolai Smolenski, to restart production or to sell the company .

Mr. Wilkinson was not married and had been living in retirement in Spain at his death.

http://www.tvr.co.uk/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TVR

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America in recession? I dont think so says Classic Car market…

August 6, 2008

Many are of the opinion that buying classic cars in the US would be the best thing for people outside its four walls at this point in time.

They couldn’t be more wrong.

At a time when many say that the USA is going into recession, the classic car market has not been recorded at a stronger point in the last 12 months, especially with the most recent auction results.

Sure, there may be certain distress sales, but when your talking about pure classics and muscle, you better bring a good bank account with you to the table, as the bidding is going through the roof. Alternatively, if you have been sitting and converting your hard earned cash into Euros – you bet well and can buy more.

SCM and its analysts have a great few things to say about what is and what isn’t hitting the mark in terms of estimates for certain Hemi packed cars or Cobra stinging AC’s  going up on the auction block. Have a look at what they have to say here in an article entitled “Recession Proof Muscle Cars”

http://www.sportscarmarket.com/articles/archives/1429

If you need more convincing, how about a $ 1 Million Ford while youy here? Think I’m joking? Think again. Have a look here:

http://money.cnn.com/video/#/video/fortune/2008/03/13/fortune.callaway.ford.fortune

But to top it all off, a ginger haired ex- Radio DJ from UK has gone and done what no man has done before. That is to buy a 1961 Ferrari California Spyder for over $ 11 Million (previously owned by a certain J Coburn). The Internet still burns with stories covering the event itself. No doubt, the man loves his cars, but paid perhaps a tad too much we think.

http://www.autoblog.com/2008/05/19/1961-ferrari-california-spyder-sells-for-record-10-894-900/

http://uk.reuters.com/article/motoringNews/idUKNOA03787520080520

http://www.luxurylaunches.com/auctions/ferrari_fetches_11_million_at_an_auction.php

There have been numerous records set and many broken this year, in fact so many, I didn’t want to list them just yet.

 We do still have 5 months left in 2008 and I will post the most exciting ones for last.

Till then,

Enjoy.