I have wanted a TVR Griffith since my dad took me to the 1990 British International Motorshow where TVR unveiled their new car, the Griffith. Ever since then I have a big fan TVR in particular the Peter Wheeler era and promised myself that one day I would own a TVR Griffith.
Fast forward 19 years and I am finally in a position and plucked up the courage to take the plunge and purchase a TVR Griffith. I always quite fancied a 4.3 Big Valve as a love the character of the old pre-cat Griffs but I just had to go for the big daddy… the Griff 500. In reality the Griff 500s are not massively faster than the 430s BVs but the later Griff 500s had the name and reputation. What also attracted me to the 500 was the fact that the later versions had the updated Serpentine Rover V8 engine, Borg Warner T5 gearbox and updated suspension.
After browsing the classifieds for a number of months a particular Griff caught my eye. There was a stunning 1999 Griff finished in Aston Martin Mendip blue up for sale with James Birkby at TVR MADS. It was a low mileage example with a full service history that had very recently undergone a fully chassis restoration at RT Racing in Sheffield.
I went up to see James at TVR MADS to have a look at the Griff that had caught my eye. James showed me around the car which was in very good condition and looked like it had been very well cared for. All the documentation was in order and James said that as part of the sale the car would be taken to X-Works in Blackpool for a full 12k service and fresh MOT.
James also had a very similar 1999 Griff in Rolex blue. Interestingly enough was purchased by Evo editor Harry Metcalf.
After viewing a number of other Griffs I decided that the Mendip blue Griff at TVR MADS was by far and away my favourite. Not being and expert on TVRs I employed Rob Ingleby to inspect the car on my behalf before purchasing. The report from Rob was glowing and the only faults he found was the alarm system which James had already would be fixed as part of the service by X-Works and the tyres which although were legal looked to be the original factory items. After receiving the report I discussed the car in quite some detail with Rob who said it was one of the best Griffs he had seen for a while and it pulled like a train in all gears. Rob estimated the value of the car to be more than what James had agreed to sell it for so I wasn’t going to argue over a set of tyres when the rest of the car was in ammaculate condition and had passed a rigorous inspection.
After 6 months of research and browsing classifieds I was finally the proud owner of a TVR Griffith.