Minty Wedge: 1985 TVR Tasmin

I’ve always loved the wedge-shaped TVR 280i, otherwise known as a Tasmin. The ridiculous looks, the glorious Ford Cologne V6, and the period-styling that often included color-matched wheels result in a car that could only come from a company like TVR. What amazes me more is how many are still hiding out there considering how few were made in the first place. This example is listed here on craigslist in Tennessee for $10,500. 

Thanks to Barn Finds reader Pat L. for the find. The 280i Tasmins had the wonderful and snorty Cologne V6 that made some seriously exotic noises and delivered impressive performance thanks to the TVR’s light weight. The looks aren’t for everyone, as the rear overhang ends abruptly, but it is fitting for a company that has a history of putting bit motors inside of tiny cars.

The seller doesn’t mention the mileage but it’s hard to fault the interior. These cabins can look downright tired quite rapidly if not maintained, as there’s acres of leather and wood to account for. Fortunately, aside from some stress marks to the driver’s seat, I don’t see anything here to fault, but there’s a good chance some of the wood trim needs restoration.

Under-hood looks quite clean as well, with factory stickers still in place and the 160 b.h.p. V6 appearing unmodified and as the factory intended. 1,167 V6 Tasmins were produced, and fewer than that are likely to survive today. This one appears quite tidy and will deliver plenty of grin-inducing shifts from the exhaust pipes just past your ears.


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  1. lc

    really like the design of these…however those door part lines let the overall look down, I’ll get over it :)

    Like 5
  2. Mike

    I should get more sleep. For a second, the top picture looked like a driver sitting in the back seat wearing a helmet.

    Like 6
    • Uncle al

      haha….smokin’ that au natural herb, eh ?

      Like 3
  3. Bob_s

    Nice car, its been for sale for a long time.

    Like 1
  4. Coventrycat

    For crying out loud, spend a whole minute of your life and take the stupid number plate off instead of scribbles, tape, towels or a finger.

    Like 3
    • Ant

      Never understood the rationale behind obscuring them anyway. We don’t drive around with them covered up.

      Like 2
  5. aribert

    Why even block out the plate – especially if it’s expired? Why the caution? Reason I ask is that I’m about to sell a car for my mother.

    Like 1
    • Uncle al

      you should always cover the plate….a friend of mine had his BMW for sale on craiglist….cops come knocking on his door because someone claimed he hit them with his car & took off, and they forwarded the cops the plate number….it was all a set up for the $$$$$$…..luckily his car was in the shop at the time ! coulda been any of a dozen bogus claims including rape, hit & run, burglary, etc…..some people would claim anything for the almight $$$$$$$$$$ !

      Like 1
      • Ant

        What would stop someone from doing that after seeing your plate in person?

        Like 3
  6. John

    Antique Auto tags. They don’t expire in TN. I have 1987 model and it is a blast to drive and so far easy to keep. The doors on all seem to have wide gaps more 70’s american car feel than Porsche or Mercedes. Pretty active clubs here and in Europe. TVR North America and Petroheads across the pond are great resources for such a low production car.

  7. John

    One of those CL engine pictures looks like it’s from something else. It’s confusing-

  8. rod444

    Interesting proportions. Looks like Triumph TR7 that needs a nose job :)

  9. Wrong Way

    OMW, someone buy this quick! I can’t get anymore in my garage! I have 15 cars in there now! However I loved these back then and still do! It is small, but? I know that my son would have a fit! I bought that 356 B and I have both sons and grandson deep into restore on that one now! Decision, decisions? I am known to jump on things then worry about where to store them!

    Like 1
  10. Steve

    Only upon review did I “see” the driver in the car. Sleep tight.

    Like 1
  11. Owen Mancarella

    Why didn’t the seller state the mileage. Isn’t this a first order factor on its market value?

  12. rapple

    That’s a whole lot of performance and visual impact for $10500. The seller might get more action if he provided more detailed photos and info. If it’s as nice as it appears, it’s a great buy.

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