The first 1000 miles in a Supercharged Chimaera 4.0 litre SC400 by Colin Harvey

The objective when developing the Supercharger system was to develop a performance package for the TVR V8 Serpentine engines.

As part of the development programme, the 4.0 litre Griffith and Chimaera variants were to be given a new lease of life, to increase Power and Torque to the same level as the 5.0 litre HC variant whilst maintaining the drive-ability for which the 4.0 litre engine is renown. This had to be achieved maintaining smooth throttle response without any dramatic power surge. Keeping boost levels low was essential to assist drive-ability, minimise internal engine stresses and maintaining durability of the power train system.

The Rotrex Supercharger system is now complete and being subjected to extensive evaluation by engine dynamometer and driving on the road and track, this to be followed by a final detailed inspection prior to release.

I was in the privileged position of driving the car almost 1000 faultless miles, first impressions are fantastic, and the car has incredible drive-ability and performance, complying with the initial design objectives. First impressions are important; therefore the car has been presented discretely to potential customers and at Snetterton last week, where it was viewed by professionals associated with the racing fraternity and the public. The response was overwhelming, with positive comment all round regarding the quality of the installation and its aesthetics, the whole package fitting neatly under the Chimaera and Griffiths bonnets. It does look good, has a slight 'whoosh' sound as it delivers its pressurised air, and is very quiet.

There is no power lag under acceleration due to the clever intake design which gives uniform air distribution to all cylinders overcoming the inherent problems associated with past positive displacement Supercharger installations. It pulls strongly from 2000 rpm in 5 th gear all the way through to 6000rpm. When you call for more power and put your foot down, the power delivery is smooth, without surge and without any dramatics to catch you out.

The car is a pleasure to drive with boost being held to less than 6 Psi., therefore an Intercooler is not essential keeping the overall costs down. The car is achieving 270hp and 260 ft.lbs of torque at the wheels measured on the Dynamometer, this being equivalent to 320hp at the flywheel surpassing the 5.0 litre HC.

The power surge brings a smile to your face, and it is unbelievable the difference it has made. We are sure this system will make a major contribution, enhancing the life of the TVR Rover V8 engine.

We apologies for the delay as we are now continuing durability and performance evaluations, this means extensive Dyno testing, road and track mileage. Unfortunately testing must be completed and this takes time. We can not release this upgrade prematurely and must protect our your interests. Everything is going well and we hope to have completed testing during August.

I hope all our potential customers can wait a little longer as the car is sensational to drive. Incidentally TVR Sprint will be publishing their evaluation in the August edition.

We are planning to show the car to numerous TVR Car regional clubs through the summer, take the car to Blackpool for the 'Back home' meeting and to the TVR Club track day at Brands Hatch in July, if you are interested to see it.