A Brief History of the Marque
Manufactured: 1974-1986 and later
The company's first engine was designed by the engineer Dr. Aroldo Trivelli of Milan, an air-cooled disc valve 125cc two-stroke for go-karts. After thorough testing the Trivelli engine was fitted to a motorcycle.
In 1976 the TVR Tau appeared with a six-speed gearbox. It had three transfer ports and electronic ignition. Fitted to a racing motorcycle it achieved 200 km/h, developing 27 bhp at 11,000 rpm. The TVR did not prove suitable for installation on a motocross bike and Trivelli agreed to modify it to achieve a naturally aspirated engine more suited to off-road.
The Tau, with a rotary valve water-cooled version of the engine, was shown at the Milan Motosalone in 1977.
In 1979 the company formed a business relationship with a British manufacturer that required engines from 100cc for enduro work. That year Tau released a 250cc engine which is fitted to the Cabrera which produced 38 hp at 8000 rpm.
The engines were also fitted to the Panda and Valenti trials machines, and to A.R.M. enduros of Spain.
A Tau engine of most unusual configuration was built for the Bimota V-Due. It has the appearance of a V-3, with the centre cylinder having four bores which are part of the fuel injection tract, which proved to be the Achilles heel of the V-due and led to financial disaster for the firm - through no fault of Dr Trivelli, it would appear.
Sources: MC Storico Conti et al