The TVR Grantura Mark I was revealed in 1958 and was put on display in the showroom of one of Manchesters Ford-dealers. This car was the only assembled, complete TVR, even if Trevor Wilkinson said that -"... it's one in a batch of ten cars". The car was stubby and characteristic, a long bonnet and a short contoured tail. This was to be the basic design of all TVRs until 1980.
The car was built with a multi-tubular frame and a glassfibre body. The enginebay was large and a wide variety of different engines was used in these early TVRs. A VW-based trailing-link independent suspension was fitted to both front and rear. This was so stiff that no anti-roll bars were needed.
When the Grantura Mark II was introduced late 1960, it was effectively a lightly modified Mark I with several improvements and a little visual retouching. The main engine was now the MGA 1588cc producing 80 bhp. The Mark II sold a lot better than the Mark I, but was only produced for a couple of months.
The Grantura Mark IIA that followed in early 1961 was basically a Mark II with Girling front discbrakes, a modified engine line-up and a quarter-windowthat no longer could be opened. This was the first TVR that (independently tested by Autocar) exceeded 100 mph.
A new chassis was needed to rectify some of the shortcomings of the original design. The trailing arms was replaced both in the front and rear with a double-wishbone layout allied to coil-springs. The design included a longer wheelbase which gave the cars a bit more leg-room but the originally narrow door was retained. The model that first used this new chassis was named Grantura Mark III.
TVR redesigned the body for the 1964 NewYork Auto Show. The reshaped "Manx-tail" was easy to see and the rear-window was made larger and sleeker. This model is known as the Grantura 1800S. It still used the 1798cc MGB engine as found in the late Mark II's.
The Grantura Mark IV was quite simply a refined and improved version of the 1800S. Martin Lilley who owned the company at this time was focusing on quality and the overall quality was better on this car. A lot of small changes were made. The car got wooden panels on the dashboard, the spring-and-damper was revised to provide a smoother ride and the engine was moved forward slightly.