TVR Sagaris 2 (2009) spy photos

Published: 11 July 2008

TVR yesterday slid the covers off the new Sagaris in a private viewing, CAR Online can reveal. Our photographs were smuggled out of a special event held for owners and dealers – and they're the first proof of the reborn TVR brand that last year collapsed into administration amid a cloud of uncertainty.

However, yesterday's event, held at a hotel near Fleetwood in Lancashire not far from TVR's original Blackpool home, is proof positive that the most outrageous sports car maker of all is back in business.

And they've relaunched with a Sagaris?

Oh yes. One car was shown to the assembled TVR throng and it was the lightly revised Sagaris revealed in our photographs. The company is calling it the Sagaris series 2.

However, we still don't know where the new TVR will be built. It definitely won't be in Blackpool (the factory land has now been sold off, although the company's administrative HQ is still in the area) and the audience was told it would be made by parts suppliers with final assembly by a third party, probably abroad.

I thought they'd be built by a coachbuilder...


TVR had been linked to Bertone in Italy, but it's understood that negotiations have not yet been finalised. A final announcement is likely in the next few weeks, when the Sagaris 2 will be formally shown to the press.

CAR Online doesn't wait for formal press releases, however. We've got the full lowdown on the Sagaris right here and now.

Click 'Next' to read more of our TVR Sagaris 2 scoop

So what's new on the TVR Sagaris 2?

The model shown to the TVR throng today was a left-hand drive model; the reborn TVR is understood to have had plenty of interest from the booming Russian market, as well as Germany and the UK, historically its strongest market.

Why Russia? Well, unless it's escaped your attention, car sales in Russia are currently going through the roof. And TVR is now owned by enigmatic rouble millionaire Nikolai Smolenski, who now has backing from a pair of American businessmen. Indeed, attendees were told that the UK market would only get around 500 right-hand drive models; the new team expects the bulk of sales to be abroad.

Smolenski was in the background at yesterday's event, but didn't once take centre stage.

That Sagaris looks mightily like the last one...

Well yes, but you can't really improve on that sleek, attitude-dripping shape, can you? TVR has added new wheels and some minor bodywork changes, but many of the changes are focused on the interior. There is a new HVAC ventilation system and the sat-nav is tidied up too, with an extraordinary QWERTY layout and large digital screen shown in our secret photos.

The TVR presentation pointed out, correctly, that the quality of the interior fittings was the single biggest problem with the old car. So that's where the engineers have focused their attention, and a host of detail changes are apparent in the interior. It's a surefire indication that TVR wants to broaden its appeal from just hardcore enthusiasts.

That means that you can expect the same 380bhp 4.0-litre 'Speed Six' as before, capable of revving to nearly 8000rpm and spitting you down the road on your way to 60mph in just 3.7sec. The ride and handling have also been fettled, we hear.

Click 'Next' to read more of our TVR Sagaris 2 scoop

Is this more smoke and mirrors? When can I actually buy a new TVR?

Good question. Attendees were told that the new Sagaris 2 would go on sale in early 2009, suggesting that manufacturing would restart in late 2008. It will be backed by a new, independent warranty to give buyers confidence to buy into a brand tarnished with a long history of unreliability.

It seems a canny idea to launch the rejuvenated TVR to owners and dealers first; around 60 attended yesterday's private unveiling and the mood was described as buoyant – they appreciated the repayment of faith after many difficult months.

Ah yes. The difficult months...

Don't forget, one prototype does not a successful comeback make. Clearly this week's announcement is a great step in the right direction for TVR, but numerous difficult questions remain. Who will build the cars? (We'll hear the answer in the coming weeks). Who will sell them? (Many of the old dealers are signed up). And who will buy them? That last is the biggest conundrum...

The new management team, headed by Smolenski and seven other managers, are adamant there is room in the 21st century for a madcap sports car that has more muscle than a WWF wrestler. David Oxley, managing director, gave an impassioned speech as he unveiled the car.

A new MD at the top of TVR

CAR understands that David Oxley is stepping down as managing director this year; his son James Oxley will take over and he announced that he would build TVR upon sound business practices, with global sourcing and manufacturing to make the company competitive. However, we were unable to reach either today for further comment.

Will there be further new TVR models from the reborn team? Certainly. But the new, leaner, nomadic TVR has to walk before it can run and relaunching the Sagaris seems to us like as good a way as any of making a return in style.

Click 'Next' to read a full spec of the TVR Sagaris

Click here to read about TVR's collapse

TVR hasn't yet announced a full detailed spec on the new Sagaris 2, but this is what the previous model could do – and the newcomer is mechanically almost identical:

Engine: 4.0-litre six-cylinder, 380bhp @ 7000rpm, 349lb ft @ 5000rpm
Redline: 7800rpm
0-60mph: 3.7sec
Top speed: 160mph+
Transmission: Five-speed manual, rear-wheel drive, limited slip diff
Suspension: Double wishbones all round, coils over gas dampers, anti-roll bars at both ends
Steering: Electro-hydraulic power steering, 2.0 turns lock to lock
Bodywork: Hand-laid composite GRP around a steel backbone chassis
Length/width/height in mm: 4057/1850/1175
Weight: 1078kg

Excited by the rebirth of TVR? Or worried it's a business with an unsustainable future? Click 'Add your comment' and let us know

TVR hasn't yet announced a full detailed spec on the new Sagaris 2, but this is what the previous model could do – and the newcomer is mechanically almost identical:

Engine: 4.0-litre six-cylinder, 380bhp @ 7000rpm, 349lb ft @ 5000rpm
Redline: 7800rpm
0-60mph: 3.7sec
Top speed: 160mph+
Transmission: Five-speed manual, rear-wheel drive, limited slip diff
Suspension: Double wishbones all round, coils over gas dampers, anti-roll bars at both ends
Steering: Electro-hydraulic power steering, 2.0 turns lock to lock
Bodywork: Hand-laid composite GRP around a steel backbone chassis
Length/width/height in mm: 4057/1850/1175
Weight: 1078kg

Excited by the rebirth of TVR? Or worried it's a business with an unsustainable future? Click 'Add your comment' and let us know

comments powered by Disqus
  • TVR Sagaris 2: spy photos front three quarters. It's the long-awaited comeback TVR
  • The new TVR Sagaris 2 was shown at an event for dealers and fans in Lancashire
  • The rejuvenated TVR Sagaris 2 will go on sale in early 2009
  • New details adorn the 'new' TVR Sagaris 2
  • The new TVR Sagaris 2 will stick with the Speed Six, a 4.0-litre six-cylinder powerhouse
  • Recognise those wheels? They're new to the TVR Sagaris 2
  • Red cam covers signify this is the Speed Six, as used by various barking TVRs of yore
  • Sat-nav? In a TVR? The new TVR Sagaris 2 gains a rather swanky looking QWERTY unit
  • White dials remain on the TVR Sagaris 2. Expect needle to be wrapped firmly around the top end
  • TVR engineers have concentrated on the interior on the Sagaris 2
  • An everyday proposition? That's what TVR wants you to think. The new Sagaris 2 is comfier than ever