Originally known as producers of kit cars until that industry was decimated through taxes, TVR was well known for taking a bunch of parts, from many different manufacturers and somehow turning them into something that not only worked, but performed well. The 1981 TVR Tasmin 280i was introduced as the replacement for the Taimar, but featured a slightly longer wheelbase. Stylistically, it was radically different from previous TVR cars, such as the Tuscan and 3000S; inspired by the origami style pioneered by Italian designer Giugiaro, the Tasmin 280i was wedge-shaped, full of pleasing sharp angle and tapered at the front, which contrasted weirdly with the seemingly amputated rear. The chunky B-pillars didn’t help, either. Overall though, a hit.
True to form, the TVR Tasmin 280i used several engines over its production run, as new ones were fitted as they become available (or the old ones weren’t; either way, the results are the same). The fastest 280i was equipped with a 3-liter Ford overhead valve V6 engine that produced 160 horsepower (which dropped to 150 in later years). It could reach a top speed of 130 miles per hour, and accelerate to 60 mph in 8 seconds.
Interestingly, the TVR Tasmin 280i was sold as a 2+2 coupe, but in reality no one could have realistically sat in the back, not for any extended periods of time, anyways. It was also offered as a convertible, which looked considerably better, mainly because the fat B-pillars were necessarily removed.