It’s been over two months since the seemingly revived TVR brand last raised a hand to ensure its potential customers that, despite several delays, the venture headed by Les Edgar remains dedicated to launching its first product. Yet with the Cosworth-tweaked, Ford Coyote-powered Griffith still some if not a long way from entering production, a new contender has emerged to fill the void for a lightweight, V-8 sports car made in Britain.
The Mulholland Group is a tech company specializing in advanced composite engineering, and its new automotive division now promises a two-seater coupe with a carbon-fiber chassis and body structure, along with a 480-hp V-8 sending all power to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox. If that sounds very familiar, it’s because TVR happens to be advertising its Griffith with the same spec sheet. Adding to the damage, the Mulholland Legend 480 was penned by former TVR designer Damian McTaggart, who also gave the world the Chevrolet-powered (and Prodrive-engineered) 2004 Marcos TSO.
Company founder Graham Mulholland wasn’t shy, either, to reveal who its customers may be:
“To me, the marque [TVR] excelled by true principles of what a sports car should be and delivered a truly exhilarating driving experience. The Legend 480 as our first vehicle will replicate a proven formula, but we will be using the latest advanced manufacturing know-how and a world-class supply chain to achieve an expected quality and ownership experience.”
Currently, the only British V-8 two-door this side of a Ginetta Akula is the Jaguar F-Type R, which is a $103,200 all-wheel-drive coupe that, at 3843 pounds, is rather on the heavy side. There’s always a demand for something more focused for the right figure, but it’s not like taking the final steps into small-series car manufacturing got any easier.
Previous cancelled lightweight coupe projects from England include the Peter Stevens-designed MG XPower SV–a British sports car built on an Italian platform and powered by Ford V-8s—and racing car and specialty vehicle designer Prodrive’s P2, a concept built using advanced composites and Subaru parts instead of a V-8:
Now, all eyes are on Mulholland Automotive and its boldly styled, carbon-bodied V-8 Legend 480 coupe. Maybe this time.