In EPISODE 1 TVR started the TVR Project 7/12 with (according to experts) two mock-ups. The first violet car had many parts made with woods. The second violet mok-up received a further development with many mechanical parts but still without engine (see the last image of TVR Project 7/12, TVR Cerbera Speed 12, TVR Speed 12 – EPISODE 1).
The first working car: the TVR Cerbera Speed 12 or TVR Cerbera Racer
The violet car with airscoop on the roof became this:
This is the first TVR Cerbera Speed12 (or TVR Cerbera Racer), a race car which was ready for GT1 regulations. The car appeared also on Top Gear with Jeremy Clarkson:
An unlucky destiny
Problems during its development, modifications in the GT1 class regulations and the eventual decision that it was simply incapable of being used as a road car ended the idea, forcing TVR executives to abandon its development.
The original installation of the V12 engine caused some engineering challenges. The exhausts were routed down the middle of the car along the transmission tunnel, again as seen with the road cars. This, coupled with the transmission tunnel being a load-bearing part of the structure created two problems. Firstly it forced the driver’s seat closer to the side of the car due to the size of the tunnel. This isn’t desirable in a race car when side impacts are likely. Secondly the immense amount of heat generated by the exhausts made the cabin unbearably hot in race conditions.
The vehicle’s engine was a 7.7 Litre 48-valve V12 with dry sump lubrication and constructed of steel not aluminium or cast-iron that poduced 800-HP and 650 LB·FT @ 5750 rpm and that yeilded a top speed of 245 miles per hour. The car weighed in at 2,205 LBS and the transmission was a 6-speed Hollinger manual gearbox. The car’s body was carbon fibre over a tubular steel chassis.