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Tuesday Twist: Terry Wheeler's Scamander, And The Mitsuoka Viewt Photo:
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Peter Anderson | May, 29 2012 | 1 Comment

It comes as a comfort that there are still some delightfully bonkers cars being produced, despite the best efforts of governments and accountants around the world.

The first of this week's Tuesday Twists we've uncovered for you is the Scamander, the amphibious car conceived by late, great TVR boss Peter Wheeler.

With Wheeler at the helm, TVR produced some wild-looking cars but none as weird as the Scamander RRV. After selling TVR to Russian entrepreneur Nikolai Smolenski, Wheeler set out to build a 'go-anywhere' car.

Before his untimely death, Wheeler told the UK's EVO magazine:

"Lots of people are fed up with their traditional sports cars, like Ferrari and Lamborghini produce, so I wanted to create an alternative."

"I created it for me, to be honest. I enjoy shooting, sailing and driving on track, so I wanted something that could cover all these elements. I call it an RRV, for rapid response vehicle."

The first Ford Zetec-powered prototype saw the light of day in 2009, after almost six years in gestation. Wheeler's wish was that it would run the 4.6 litre Rover V8, a unit that found its way into so many TVRs.

The Scamander was finished by a team of engineers recruited by Wheeler's widow.


Mitsuoka Viewt

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From amphibious-offroad-trackday-hunting cars to unrestrained retro, we move to Japan where tiny Mitsuoka has just updated its Jaguar Mark II look-alike, the Viewt.

Not that you'd tell from the outside.

The Viewt's sheetmetal hides a fourth-generation Nissan Micra platform and a 59kW 1.2 litre engine mated to a CVT driving either the front or all four wheels.

It's no shrink-wrapped version of the Jag, though - the Mitsuoka is almost 40cm longer than the Micra donor car and just 7.5cm shorter than a Mark II.

Mistuoka sells most of its cars in Japan and also has dealers in the UK. We haven't looked up the figures, but we wouldn't mind betting that the Viewt solidly outsold Jaguar's own S-Type in Japan.

A Viewt can be had for around $27,000 or about the same price as two Nissan Micras.

Australian availability for these cars is 'if you have to ask' and 'unlikely' respectively.

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