Disgusting, Ant-Infested TVR 280i Gets First Wash in 10 Years

TVR 280i first wash in 10 years 11 photos
Photo: WD Detailing/YouTube
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Keeping a classic car in long-term storage is not bad if done correctly. However, park it outside or in a derelict barn, and it will end up with many issues. And it's not just rust I'm talking about here. Chances are you also have to remove a few rat nests from the cabin or the engine bay once you decide to put it back on the road.
Yup, rodents are very fond of vehicles that have been sitting for a long time, but they're not exactly friendly with their internals. They usually chew through cables and upholstery, leaving a big, smelly mess behind them. We've seen quite a few "first wash" videos that deal with this type of thing, but have you ever seen an ant-infested car? If you haven't, this TVR sports car proves that rodents aren't the only beings you need to worry about when keeping your classic car fully exposed to the elements.

Delivered to "WD Detailing" for a thorough clean-up, this TVR 280i has been sitting for about ten years. Parked outside after the owner passed away, the British sports car arrived at the shop with a thick layer of dust and mold covering its wedge-shaped body. But that wasn't what made it truly disgusting. Upon removing the carpets, our host discovered an entire ant colony living in the cabin. And he was quick to point out that it was the worst he had ever seen.

He called it quits after dragging the car out of the shop and leaving a few bogger bug bombs inside but returned the next day to finish the job. And he pulled it off quite nicely. Sure, this TVR needs new carpets and new upholstery to become driveable again, but the transformation is tremendous, to say the least. And now that it's sparkling clean, the new owner can get that old Ford V6 mill running again.

If you're not familiar with this TVR, it was introduced in 1980 as the Tasmin. It was renamed the 280i in 1984 and remained in production until 1987. TVR also offered a more affordable 200i version powered by a four-cylinder instead of the V6.

The company's first sports car from the "Wedge series," the Tasmin was designed by Oliver Winterbottom, who also penned the second-generation Lotus Elite and the Eclat. TVR offered three different versions of the Tasmin/280i, including two-seat and 2+2 coupes and a two-seat convertible.

Built around a tubular spaceframe, the Tasmin relied on Ford underpinnings. The 280i model you see here came with a 2.8-liter "Cologne" V6 engine. Developed by Ford Europe, it was shared with a long list of FoMoCo vehicles, including the Bronco II, the Pinto, and the second-generation Mustang. Rated at 160 horsepower in the early Series I version, it was detuned to 150 horses in Series II. The V6 pushed the Tasmin from 0 to 60 mph (97 kph) in eight seconds toward a top speed of 128 mph (206 kph).

Introduced in 1981, the base 200i model featured a 2.0-liter "Pinto" inline-four engine good for 101 horsepower. This version was obviously slower, charging to 60 mph in nine seconds and hitting a top speed of 110 mph (177 kph).

Despite its long production cycle, the Tasmin/280i/200i moved fewer than 1,200 units. And even though it's pretty rare for a British sports car, it's not exactly famous, so it's far from desirable nowadays. But that's enough history for today. Now, hit the play button below to watch this red TVR 280i come back to life after ten years.

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About the author: Ciprian Florea
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Ask Ciprian about cars and he'll reveal an obsession with classics and an annoyance with modern design cues. Read his articles and you'll understand why his ideal SUV is the 1969 Chevrolet K5 Blazer.
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