TVR's long-awaited Griffith seems even more unlikely to happen, and Volvo kicks off pre-production of the ES90 in China
Six Years After Its Reveal, The TVR Griffith Doesn't Have A Factory
8 September 2017 – that’s when the reborn TVR Griffith was revealed. More than six years have passed since then, but the sports car remains a pipe dream. In fact, the situation is looking even worse now because the company has lost the exclusive rights to build the car at the Blaenau Gwent plant in South Wales. During a meeting held on 5 December, the Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council's Place scrutiny committee decided TVR would not be favoured anymore to set up shop at that factory.
South Wales Argus quotes corporate director for regeneration and community services, Ellie Fry, saying: "(TVR's) exclusive rights to be able to rent the Techboard building have now lapsed. They (TVR) could still rent it if they wanted to, but it will actually go to the market as well. They have not said anything about TVR and whether they have decided not to come or still want to come. The Welsh Government have just decided they will put the building on the market."
Since revealing the Griffith in 2017, TVR outlined plans for an electric version of the coupe. The announcement was made in 2022 when the troubled company also mentioned an electric saloon and SUV, but we haven't heard anything since then. We're still keeping our fingers crossed TVR is coming back, but we're honestly beginning to lose hope.
Volvo Starts Pre-Production Of An Electric Saloon
After several SUVs and a quirky MPV, the next Volvo to get the electric treatment will be a saloon. Swedish publication Teknikens Värld – which flipped the Mercedes A-Class in the infamous moose test in 1997 – has managed to obtain an image published on the automaker's intranet. The image with the car hiding under a cover (with "CONFIDENTAL" and "TOP SECRET" written all over it) was taken inside a factory located in Cixi, a city located in the Zhejiang Province of eastern China.
The EV is internally codenamed "V551" and believed to be officially called the "ES90." It has been developed on the same SPA2 platform as the EX90. The internal memo also included some preliminary technical specifications. The Volvo ES90 is allegedly going to be 4,990 millimetres long with a massive wheelbase spanning 3,102 mm. It's said to be 1,547 mm tall and 1,945 mm wide. Its claimed footprint makes it a direct competitor for the BMW i5, Mercedes EQE, and the future Audi A6 E-Tron.
The brand's first electric saloon apparently weighs somewhere in the region of 2,600 kilograms in the dual-motor AWD variant and 2,500 kg for the single-motor RWD model. It has a large 111-kWh battery, which is no surprise since the EX90's pack has the same capacity. Range is rumoured to reach 373 miles for the single-motor model, but that's probably in the China Light-Duty Vehicle Test Cycle (CLTC).
Series production is allegedly starting in May 2024.