Trevor Wilkinson, the founder of independent British-based sports car manufacturer TVR, has died in Spain aged 85. Despite leaving the company back in 1965, Wilkinson’s influence continued to remain in the marquee right up until the past few years. Following his retirement Wilkinson moved to Minorca, Spain, and had been living there comfortably until the past couple of years due to illness.

The company was first founded in 1947 and adopts its names from the letters in Wilkinson’s first name – TreVoR. The first car built was a two-seater roadster sitting on a tubular chassis with an alloy body - a concept that was fairly unusual for the 1940s but was certainly in keeping with Wilkinson's radical nature.

Over the years TVR has changed hands several times and most recently came into the portfolio of Nicolay Smolensky, a Russian national. Smolensky had plans to turn around the company's flagging fortunes and sell 5,000 units annually by the end of the year. However, the rights of the company and most of the assets were sold to a pair of American investors, who are currently developing a range of models for sale in North America.