My mate had a Cerbera, a convertible one

I’ve lost count how many times people have come up to me and said this. What they mean of course is their mate had a Chimaera. Even then, after being corrected, it’s followed up with, yes the convertible version- It’s the same right?

It’s a common misconception that the Cerbera and the Chimaera is the same model, just optioned with or without a roof. I suppose to the untrained eye, unless you saw both side-by-side, it’s an easy mistake to make. There are certainly some shared design cues.

So how do they differ?

Under the skin, they share the same T5 gearbox. The engine however is different, with the Chimaera utilising a Rover V8, whereas the Cerbera utilised TVRs own in-house engine.

Interior wise, they are quite different, the Cerbera has rear seats and a striking swooping dashboard.

But it’s the exterior where the differences become more apparent.

TVR cerbera and chimaera to scale

This image of the 2 cars is to scale.

The Cerbera is noticeably longer and results in a longer door.

TVR cerbera and chimaera dimensions
  • Width = the same
  • Height = almost the same
  • Length = Cerbera is 29mm longer
  • Wheelbase = Cerbera is 28mm wider
  • Front & Rear Track = almost the same
  • Ground clearance = almost the same

The Chimaera is a great car, and certainly an affordable way into TVR ownership- it’s a big bang for your buck. Although, you won’t be surprised to hear that I prefer the Cerbera. The body lines are so sexy, and if you chopped the roof off, it breaks those lines that give it that awesome silhouette.

The Cerbera is also known to handle better, and I suppose amongst other things, it would be down to the longer wheelbase.

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