Beautiful Barn Find: 1959 TVR Grantura

This gorgeous 1969 TVR Grantura is a rarity in the United States, and really anywhere considering the low volume production numbers. Just 100 Series 1 cars were made, making a barn find example of one that has seemingly survived in excellent condition quite a find. This Grantura is listed here on eBay with bidding at $8,300 and the reserve unmet, and is fitted with a 1500cc MG engine.

The seller notes that this Grantura emerged from barn find storage with its original UK plates still attached, a testament to its originality. The interior looks remarkably well preserved as well, not the easiest thing for a car that was assembled by hand and in limited quantities. The carpet looks beautiful and taut, with no signs of tears or bunching up from prior removals.

The seller notes the body is in excellent shape as are the wire wheels. There’s no sign of damage to the shell or the glass, and the seller believes it will run with some coaxing. There’s also evidence of brake and suspension work done, including new bushings. Given how rare these are in the U.S., I’d love to know the story as to how it got here and remained with British plates affixed.

An MGA engine was a common upgrade, but given how light the chassis is, I’m not sure more power is even necessary. If TVRs were known for one thing, it was their ability to go quickly with seemingly small powerplants, thanks to their lightweight construction. This Series 1 Grantura is a rare beast and looks like a project worthy of scooping up.


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  1. RayT Member

    Sweet! I see a lot of interior scrubbing in its future…is that mold on the seats? And I wonder what you’d have to do to get a new (plexiglass?) rear window. Not sure that could be buffed out.

    Aside from that, and sourcing all the soft parts that would need to be replaced, I love it. You sure wouldn’t see another coming down the road anytime soon! These are purposeful rather than beautiful in my eyes, but I dig ’em.

    Aside from being short of the funds, space and time needed to get this back in the shape it deserves to be in, I’m holding out for a Griffith, though!

    Like 4
    • Andy

      Naturally, there can’t be any plexiglass in a TVR–it has to be perspex! Also no aluminum, only aluminium. But either way, if the rear window is some 20th century wonder material, there’s reason to hope a new one could be 3D printed. If they ever learn to print safety glass, the car hobby could be revolutionized.

      Like 1
    • Mike S

      You have touched on the 3 gremlins that derail the majority of failed restoration projects, time, space, & money. Passion, infatuation, & ego, somehow often times take precedence.

  2. UK Paul 🇬🇧

    Lovely thing!

    Like 2
  3. Andy

    Some faculty member at my high school daily-drove a TVR the whole time I was there–at least when there was no snow. I never figured out who it was, but that was far and away the coolest car in the parking lot.

    Like 2
    • Oki Josh

      Parkway West? The auto shop teacher had one we were helping restore!

  4. Racingpro56

    Nothing says “British” like 10 analog gauges, a bunch of toggle switches and wire wheels. Love it!

    Like 5
  5. luke arnott Member

    TVR build quality was rubbish.

    • Martin Horrocks

      There was almost no such thing as “build quality” in UK car production. Like most other things there at the time, quality seemed to be rationed according to social level. Rolls and Bentley, Bristol you´d get the best quality in the world. Aston Martin down, just starts to get worse. Rover probably had the best UK quality/value ratio, but that was still doctor/lawyer level of spend. UK buyers would generally prioritise snob appeal of leather/wood over engineering excellence.

      As a Mk1, this TVR is very, very rare. And very, very raceable. It would be a pity to race-prepare such an original survivor, but car would be competitive. Rear screens can be had in the UK,or fabricated in many places. Parts not a problem.

      US was a major market for TVR from the beginning. Although the cars were built in tiny numbers, a lot went to USA. Enough to cause the company to fail (first time of many) when the US importer failed to pay on time.

      Like 1
  6. John D.

    I had a high school biology teacher that drove a MG GT. I could always see it from a classroom and was mystified by the “BAN OOT” bumper sticker until I figured out I had misread “BAN DDT”

    Like 3
    • Luki

      What a coincidence. I went to high school too, but I’m a bit confused.
      What exactly, if anything, does your comment have to do with the TVR in question?

      Like 1
      • UK Paul 🇬🇧

        He is linking it to Andys comments about high school.

        Like 4
  7. canadainmarkseh Member

    Cute car, love to have it, not going to happen.

    Like 1
  8. m

    Just noticed on ebay advert that rear end bodywork has been modified with a spoiler (described as “duck trail”) and flared arches (?, I think). Bad photos so hard to see but looks quite attractive. All the same, car would have to revert to standard in any serious restoration for race or concours. Again, moulds no doubt exist with car club in UK.

    Many deviations from stock (all those auxiliary instruments for one), but a lovely period piece of what a young owner would do to a second hand sports car a few years down the line (late 60s/early 70s)

  9. Brakeservo

    Wow, I coulda hadda V8!

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