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1959 Triumph TR3 for $1,800

1959 Triumph TR3

This 1959 Triumph TR3 is claimed to be a barn find, but it looks more like a ditch find to me! There’s lots of rust and no title, but it does appear to be mostly complete. The seller is realistic when they mention that it is being sold for parts though. The price and that Union Jack tonneau cover do make this project a tempting proposition, but luckily the geographic location keeps it out of reach for me. I’d love to have one though because they are fun to drive and great looking. Their inline-four puts out enough power to slot them just below a Big Healey and yet they are still affordable enough for most of us to aspire to. This project is located in Burlington, Wisconsin and is listed for sale here on craigslist for $1,800. What do you think – is it too far gone to justify a restoration? Thanks goes to Pete L. for the tip!


  1. Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

    Jesse, I think the Union Jack is on the top, not the tonneau, not that it matters. I do think this car could be done. Even if the frame is rusted, there are TR3 frames available both new and used. Will you spend less in the long run getting a better car to start with? Yes. But if this means you could start now, maybe it will work for someone.

    Like 1
  2. J Jefferson

    I paid $1,500 for mine more than 15 years ago. It was a non running barn find, but in much better condition than this. I’ve seen worse, but if you put $15k into it, then you will have a fun little $15k runner.

    You can spend $2k on parts pretty quickly, so I hope this one is worth saving. You have to start somewhere….

  3. Howard A Member

    The fact that this is in Wisconsin, and still resembles a TR-3, is amazing in it’s own right. The Mid-west was not kind to these cars, although, most of this cars problems seem to stem from years outside. I know there’s no such thing as a parts car anymore, people restore anything nowadays, but I think this would be considered an “ambitious” restoration.

  4. rover

    Yep it’s mostly there, the price is right, someone with indoors storage // work space get that car into the dry. Clean it out, and if nothing else throw a cover over it. Like money in the bank. There will always be a market for these cars to anyone who has ever driven one. The price for this car may stall but doubtfull it will ever go down again. Is that the tonneau still struggling to hang on there in the back? (Back where unbelievable to me today but we used to fit a third passenger!!) Someone clarify my 60 year old addled memory banks – the hole aft of the shift lever was to access // grease the forward prop shaft u-joint?? I do remember the entire trans cover would unbolt from the floor via a maze of 7/16″ bolts this memory from pulling electric overdrive units from our field of Triumph and Healy “wrecks” and retro fitting onto non overdrive cars. Note to you young barnfinders -half those “wrecks” were in three times better condition than this example being offered on craigslist today, and were bought for and average of us$100-300 as parts cars which I guess is why I say…. Nice car definitely savable restorable… maybe not today…just needs someone to give it a dry indoors home right now.

  5. jim s

    if it had a title to match the VIN that might help sell it. if interest make the seller an offer on the parts. great find..

  6. pontiactivist

    I remember pretending to drive in one of these as a lil kid in the late 70’s. Lol

  7. jim s

    i was out this morning and saw parked under a shade tree a restored 59 tr3, BRG with overdrive. last weekend i passed a restored white TR6. it must be the time of year for people to start putting miles on their old cars.

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