Originally due in 2019, the Griffith sports car from revived British performance marque TVR has been delayed as the company struggles with getting its plant up.
TVR Chairman Les Edgar confirmed the delay in a letter sent to deposit holders last month reassuring them that the project hasn't been cancelled, Autocar reported last week. It was in September 2017 that the 500-horsepower Griffith was first shown.
Edgar said in his letter that the delays were due to “slower than hoped” progress on the plant, the site of which is Ebbw Vale, Wales. One of the specific issues mentioned was the need for a new roof. No timeline for when production might start was mentioned.
This is the second time we've heard of TVR's plant issues. Construction of the plant was put on hold a year ago after the Welsh government purchased a roughly 3-percent stake in the company, or about $700,000 worth. The deal meant TVR was subject to European Union rules and regulations that surround state funding. With the rules, TVR was required to let any EU firm appraise the work on its new production facility, not just local firms.
To help speed up the process, TVR has hired a new CEO, Jim Berriman, who has previously worked at Land Rover and Rolls-Royce. In his letter, Edgar said Berriman “brings valuable end-to-end experience of getting new cars off the drawing board, into production and out into market.”
The one silver lining is that the delay means the Griffith will feature the latest version of Ford's 5.0-liter V-8 which meets new emissions regulations in the E.U. The engine will still feature enhancements from Cosworth and send power to the rear wheels, with a 6-speed manual to serve as the only gearbox. The new car will also feature Gordon Murray's innovative iStream construction, which focuses on taking out weight from a vehicle platform. In the case of the Griffith, minimal pre-assembled parts form the basis of the car's construction.
The first batch of cars is priced at $117,285 each.