1998 TVR Chimaera 500
Ex-TVR promo car; rare 5.0 V8 version with 340bhp; 0-60 in 4.1 secs and 175mph; 77,200 miles with 17 services to date; very tidy indeed
Launched in 1992, the Chimaera was a sister car to the more hardcore Griffith, using the same tubular backbone chassis and basically the same running gear but was slightly longer and more spacious with softer suspension and a much larger boot that made it an ideal high-speed tourer. Weighing just 1,060kg, it was still mighty quick, even with the standard 240bhp 4.0 V8 that could hurl it to 60 in just 5 seconds on its way to a top speed of 152mph.
Powerful disc brakes at each corner kept everything under control while suspension was independent all round with unequal-length double wishbones and coil-over gas dampers assisted by anti-roll bars. The clever convertible roof had a carbon fibre targa panel which stowed in the boot for wind-in-the-hair motoring but made it as snug as a coupe in the winter.
An essential part of the driving appeal was the spine-tingling exhaust note which rose to a brutal howl at high revs and made it almost impossible to drive the car slowly, so addictive was the soundtrack when provoked!
In 1994 things got better still with the launch of the Chimaera 500, now with a bonkers 340bhp and 320lb/ft on tap which made it good for 175mph with 0-60 despatched in a mere 4.1 seconds. Bigger brakes were also added and it proved just as quick as the equivalent Griffith but was less intimidating to drive and appreciably more comfortable. Around 6,000 Chimaeras were built in total, of which only around 700 were in 5.0 form and survivors are increasingly rare and sought-after today.
First registered in December 1998, this 500 is more unusual than most as it was formerly a TVR promotional car, being used in some of their advertising and also making appearances at shows. Finished in special order Crystal Verde with a green soft top and a hand-stitched green leather interior, it has a subtly green-tinted dashboard and instruments with green side-repeater indicators – these features apparently being specially made for the car by the craftsmen at Jaguar! We are told that the name of the craftsman who finished off the car is written in felt-tip under the boot carpets but as these are quite tricky to remove, you will have to take the vendor’s word for that.
In the current ownership since 2010, it has covered only 77,200 miles to date and comes with an excellent service history comprising no fewer than 16 stamps in the book up to 73,847 miles in 2010 when the book runs out of pages (the first 14 at TVR Blackpool) plus many supporting invoices and was last serviced only a handful of miles ago. The current MOT runs until May 2022, with a dozen old MOTs also on file. Equipped with the desirable power steering option and recently fitted with a new set of tyres, it also comes with some Crystal Verde touch-up paint, a spare pair of orange side repeaters, a Pioneer radio/CD and some TVR promo cards featuring this very car.
Starting promptly and running beautifully as we have moved it around on site, it appears to be in very good order throughout, the only real blemish we noted being a scuff on the left corner of the rear bumper, as shown in the photos. Only reluctantly sale due to illness, this rare and interesting TVR is guaranteed to put a massive grin on your face, especially when you floor the loud pedal!
For more information contact James on 07970 309907 or email [email protected]
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