ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM
One off TVR made for Peter Wheeler to star up north at Manchester classic car show
No-one who has seen or heard the legendary TVR ‘White Elephant’ running will ever forget it.
Now the bizarre creation built in 1988 for TVR managing director Peter Wheeler will be one of the stars at The Footman James Classic Car Show Manchester, at EventCity on 17-18 September.
The car features an experimental 5.0 litre V8 Holden race engine, given to Peter to evaluate by GM’s Australian equivalent of Vauxhall, giving it 400bhp, 389lb ft of torque, a 170mph top speed and a 0-60mph time of four seconds.
The White Elephant also incorporates the nose from a previous prototype and is the first TVR modelled using quickdrying expanding foam. Amazingly, it was only saved from the scrapheap just 10 days before Wheeler sold the company in 2004.
It was then subject to a nineyear restoration, starting off as a non-runner with a tree growing out of the boot and mice nesting in the engine bay. After its extensive restoration it was finished in pearlescent white coachwork.
Features include a countersunk dog basket located behind the passenger seat to accommodate Peter’s gun dog, Ned, and a hidden compartment to the rear of the cabin for shotguns, cartridge boots and the fruits of various shooting sessions. It was the first TVR to feature a horizontally mounted radiator and also the first TVR to feature a numberplate backlit from inside the cabin.
‘We are honoured to have this car and other rare TVRs among the hundreds of classics at this show,’ comments event spokesman Andy Rouse. Nick Larkin