Trevor Wilkinson, the man who founded TVR, has died at the age of 85.
Despite leaving school at 14, Wilkinson set up a successful light engineering company in his home town of Blackpool. He created his first car, a one-off special, in 1947, thereafter founding TVR Engineering, the company’s initials taken from his first name.
Under Wilkinson, TVR created the signature mechanical package that made the company’s products famous: a tubular backbone chassis with lightweight glassfibre bodywork.
Wilkinson and his business partner Jack Pickard left TVR in 1962, setting up a specialist glassfibre engineering business. After retirement he moved to Minorca in Spain, from where his death was announced.
The company Wilkinson founded has enjoyed and endured several cycles of boom and bust since his departure. It last produced cars in 2006, under controversial owner Nikolai Smolensky, and despite rumours of a rebirth with overseas production, the future of the brand remains in serious doubt.