TVS was established by T. V. Sundaram Iyengar. He was born in 1877 in Thirukkurungudi in the Tirunelveli district of Madras Presidency, British India. He began with Madurai's first bus service in 1911 and founded T.V.Sundaram Iyengar and Sons Limited, a company in the transportation business with a large fleet of trucks and buses under the name of Southern Roadways Limited.
When he died in 1955, his sons took the company ahead with several forays in the automobile sector, including finance, insurance, and manufacture of two-wheelers, tyres and components. The south Indian company set up a plant at Hosur in 1978, to manufacture mopeds as part of their new division. In 1980, TVS 50, India's first two-seater moped rolled out of the factory at Hosur in Tamil Nadu.
Soon after, TVS and Suzuki tied up to have a 19-year-long relationship which was aimed at technology transfer, to enable design and manufacture of two-wheelers specifically for the Indian market. Renamed TVS-Suzuki, the company brought out several models such as the Suzuki Samurai, Suzuki Shogun and Suzuki Fiero. In 2001, after separating ways with Suzuki, the company was renamed TVS Motor.
In early 2015, TVS Racing became the first Indian factory team to take part in the Dakar rally, which is one of the longest and most dangerous rallies in the world. TVS Racing partnered with French motorcycle manufacturer Sherco for the Dakar rally, and named the team Sherco TVS Rally Factory Team.
The company has four manufacturing plants - three located in India (Hosur, Tamil Nadu; Mysore, Karnataka and Nalagarh, Himachal Pradesh) and one in Indonesia (Karawang).