TVR goes off the rails

Published: 02 January 2007

British sportscar manufacturer TVR is fighting for survival after crashing into administration over Christmas.

Blackpool Automotive Ltd, TVR’s manufacturing arm, has stopped building cars at the Blackpool HQ, its home since 1947. Around 250 members of staff stayed at home this week, waiting to discover their fate. Administrator PKF (UK) LLP said it was hopeful it could sell TVR as a going concern.

So is this the end of TVR? This is where it gets tricky. Following a restructure in 2006, TVR spun off its manufacturing business, Blackpool Automotive, which has now slipped into administration. However, TVR’s parent company remains in business and said it was business as usual – even though it isn’t building any cars at present. It also vowed that warranties and parts supplies would be unaffected.

TVR’s managing director, David Oxley, said: ‘It is unfortunate that production could not continue as it had done for so many years, but it is time for TVR to move on.’ It is understood that Nikolai Smolensky, TVR’s Russian boss since 2004, plans to continue assembling TVRs at coachbuilder Bertone. Parts would be shipped from the UK to Italy, where final assembly will take place.

By Tim Pollard

Group digital editorial director, motoring news magnet