Throwback Thursday – TVR Grantura road test, 17 November 1961
The TVR Grantura was given the full road test treatment
The TVR Grantura was the first of the Blackpool-based company’s cars to undergo the full scrutiny of the Autocar road test
The company in which became known as TVR was formed in 1946, however news of its endeavours only rarely graced the pages of Autocar inside the early years.
The turning point came with the British launch of the Grantura, which was the first TVR to be afforded the full Autocar road test treatment.
The little two-seater was offered that has a choice of three engines: the MGA 1600, the 1220cc Coventry Climax or Ford 109E power unit.
Autocar’s test car was fitted with the Coventry Climax unit, which produced 84bhp at 6300rpm. Zero to 60mph was covered in 10.8sec.
Low-speed torque wasn’t particularly not bad, however “real pulling power can be available coming from 4000rpm along with up to 6500rpm, or 200rpm above maximum power.
“At higher speeds performance was rather disappointing,” reported our road testers, “along with the maximum speed of 101mph can be well below what was expected coming from This specific car.
“When initial attempts were made to take the performance figures, the item was found in which the engine could not run much over 6000rpm in third gear along with could not reach these revolutions in top.
Investigations revealed in which rather soft N5 Champion sparking plugs were fitted; these were replaced by harder N3 plugs along that has a great improvement was noticed immediately.”
The Grantura was offered in kit form or as a complete car, however with purchase tax adding an eye-watering £498 to the £1045 cost, most buyers swerved the item by ordering their car as a DIY project.
The Grantura was fitted that has a ZF gearbox along that has a clutch “with springs of almost competition stiffness in which make town driving a little tiring, however on the open road the short movement of the clutch pedal happily weds itself to the quick action of the gear selector”.
The Grantura was one of the few cars at the time to feature all-round independent suspension. the item came in for criticism for its tendency to wander slightly at high speeds, however praise was forthcoming.
“Compact dimensions, not bad manoeuvrability along with high performance inside the middle ranges make the item a very fast cross-country car,” wrote our testers.
“This specific can be not everybody’s cup of tea, however to many enthusiasts its distinctive along with interesting character will give lasting pleasure.”
Knowing how to categorise the Grantura, which was built by Layton Sports Cars Ltd of Blackpool, was another challenge for Autocar’s testers.
“Unless the item can be possible to put oneself inside the shoes of a likely purchaser, the item can be difficult to consider a car in its true perspective,” Autocar’s report said.
“The minute luggage room curtails its use as a touring car, along with inside the form presented for test the item can be not sufficiently fast to compete in racing. One must place the item in a category in which has become rare today: the item can be a car for the person who drives for the sheer fun of the item.”
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