Which is the best among them? Which of them has the best value-for-money? Which of them has the best reliability? Maybe in the comparison between a TVR Tuscan Mk1 and a TVR Tuscan Mk2 the Speed-6 engine is the most important aspect every TVR enthusiast should consider before purchasing.
Of course, there are some mechanical and styling differences: front grille and lights, tail and lights, cockpit (in particoular the instrumentation cluster). But the pwertrain of the car should be examined in the best way (and, of course, by a known TVR Specialist). Here are some advices:
1) In terms of period of building, a later engine doesn’t give you more warranty than an older one, but, as enthusiasts say “it’s the “how has it been looked after” that counts most”. Owners suggest that it should have received an “engine rebuild” at least but there are those owners (even if they’re few) who are running with the same engine without this strong inspection. Of course, the maintenance of the engine has to be perfectly documented.
There are some critical components which should be inspected with great care and among them everybody will quote the finger followers (we showed the ones of a TVR Tuscan S MK1 under maintenance at UK Garage of Bovisio Masciago, north of Milan. Remember: UK Garage IS NOT in Bergamo). There is also some precious and specific advice that allow to determine specific engines families: “I think in terms of reliability (engine) there is no difference if you consider a Mk1 S built as from summer 2003 or later”. Anyway, a later engine ‘should have’ some more chance in terms of reliability.
2) Assuming the engine is “ok”, every potential buyer has to understand how does he feel at the wheel. Two fundamental aspects have to be considered: steering and suspensions.
TVR Tuscan MK1 and TVR Tuscan MK2 drive differently as they have different ratio steering racks. The mk1 had a quicker rack.
Original TVR Tuscan Mk1 was fitted with Harvey-Bailey shock absorbers and it was those (plus poor setup) that gave the MK1 such a bad handling reputation. MK2s are fitted with Eibach springs and Bilstein dampers but there aren’t similar comments on the better hnadling of a TVR Tuscan MK2. A tuscan Mk1 is more likely to have had it’s suspension upgraded with Nitron dampers or the like which are far superior to the standard MkII dampers, so there’s a good chance that it’ll handle better than a standard MkII.