In Or Out? 10

First…I had another dream in which I began a journey in a car, but did not finish it in one. I dreamt I was on a frantic trip to get from Point A to Point B, for reasons lost forever to dreamland. The road had many steep hills and sharp drops. At one point, the car warned me not to travel on a certain road, not because of road or weather conditions, but because of “political” reasons! I had intended to ignore the warning, but before I ever reached that road I found myself making the journey on foot as my car had just disappeared. I wasn’t even particularly surprised by the disappearance, just determined to reach my destination. However, I woke up before I finished my journey or reached the road I was supposed to avoid. WTF?!


For this edition of In Or Out? I am waiving the five-vote minimum. The car shown and discussed today is one that is not likely to be familiar to most of you.

This car was featured on an Edd China episode of Wheeler Dealers as well as the newer, but less than scintillating spinoff, Wheeler Dealers: Dream Car. Beginning next year, it will be legal to import the first model year of this car into the US as production began in 1996. I present the TVR Cerbera:


See the source image


From Parkers of the UK a picture of the TVR Cerbera. TVR was founded in 1947 by Trevor Wilkinson (whose name was used to name the company) and Jack Pickard. Yes, it is a British car.

The company history is littered with liquidations and ownership changes. If you want to know more, you can read this. The Cerbera was significant in TVR history since it was the first car made by the company that:

1) Was not a convertible

2) Had four seats, all previous TVR models were two-seaters

3) Had an engine developed and manufactured by TVR

The Cerbera did not have traction control or ABS. It was also an extremely light car, especially given the power of the engine. The Wikipedia article about the Cerbera states that at some point in production the cars were available with an inline six-cylinder engine, but I had always heard that the cars were only available with TVR’s own flat-plane crank V-8. The final iteration of that V-8 (not including the “special” Speed Eight Red Rose) displaced 4.5 liters/273 cubic inches and produced 420 HP/380 LB-FT of torque without forced induction. The Cerbera only weighed about 2,600 pounds and with the most powerful engine could accelerate from 0-60 MPH in well under 4 seconds and, supposedly, be capable of speeds approaching 190 MPH.

I really like the “wild” styling of these cars. They have a chopped look about them that is not excessive, in my opinion. Like virtually everything else, I think balance is the essence of successful automotive styling.

The Cerbera was manufactured from 1996 to 2003. Foreign cars can be imported into the US without having to meet DOT regulations as long as it has been at least 25 years since they were built. The actual number of Cerberas produced is unclear, but is not likely to have exceeded 2,000 and may be as few as 1,100.

OK, good people…the TVR Cerbera, In Or Out? Oh, the name Cerbera was derived from Cerberus, the three-headed monster of Greek mythology that guarded the entrance to Hades.







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18 thoughts on “In Or Out? 10

  1. Out… not a fan of the styling which attracted me at first look, but I’ve since decided from the one and only picture I’ve seen to be too “bulbous”. I thought I knew British Iron, but you got me on this one.


  2. Out for me. Although it is quite stylish..Would make a nice Restomod with modern power and brakes.


    1. Good to “hear” from you, C/2. 2-0 Out for the TVR Cerbera.

      Am I inferring correctly that your vote might have been different if the car were equipped with ABS and maybe traction control?


  3. I’m gonna go in on this one. Just quirky enough to pique my interest for someone who usually marches to a different drum.


    1. Thanks for voting, DDM. The vote is now 2-1 Out on the TVR Cerbera.

      Yes, it is a quirky car that marches to its own beat. I also think that makes the car appealing. I don’t know if I would ever actually own one, even if I could, because I no longer drive vehicles with manual transmissions, but I would be tempted, at least.


  4. IN for me, but I almost wished I would not have read the Wiki history of the company’s many ups and downs and quirks and turns.


  5. I see some styling cues reminiscent of the first Viper, but to my eye there’s something out of proportion to it overall. That and my unfamiliarity with it (first I’ve ever heard of it) means I’ll give it a miss.


    1. Many thanks for the vote, sir. The vote is now 3-2 Out for the Cerbera.

      I am glad that the vote on the last three In Or Out? cars has been close. Although unanimity is hard to find on any topic, I think some cars would be close to unanimous either In or Out.

      I am also glad that at least three voters had apparently never heard of the car before today. Live and learn…for me learning is the best form of entertainment.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. As the engineer and sarcastic hot rod person that I am and someone who is not a fan of British cars and motorcycles in general because of Lucas electrics, I will go against my better judgement and vote IN. The car is quirky and I am generally a fan of quirky. I too saw the resemblance to the early Vipers. I take it this would not be a candidate for the grocery getter of which you are in need?


    1. Very glad to “hear” from you as always, Philip. Your vote ties it up at 3-3.

      No, this car is not even close to being considered as the Corvette Companion/Grocery Car. First, we hope to be in the desert before the end of this year, which means it would not be legal to buy one and import it. Second, I don’t drive manuals anymore and these were only available with a 5-speed manual. Third, we would need a car that would be more easily serviced than a TVR.

      I don’t want to put the cart before the horse, so I am not thinking (too much) about the next car. First, we have to sell our house here. Second, we have to buy a house there. Then, after maybe 2-3 months have passed we will crank up the search for a car.


      1. I understand the need to have priorities. I too do not drive manuals anymore as my left knee would complain profusely. I did note that the car did have a slight resemblance to the 1995 Buick Riviera.


      2. I have arthritis in my left foot, a very painful bunion and arthritis in my left knee. All that being said, I haven’t driven a stick since long before those maladies.


    1. Thanks, Eileen. The vote is now 5-3 In for the TVR Cerbera.

      I don’t believe in prophecy, but I believe that 2016 and 2020 have offered the worst candidates for President in US history.


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