1973 Triumph TR6: British Beater

1973-triumph-tr6-project

Before I bought the MGB, I was seriously considering a Triumph. I was imagining something that looked kind of rough, but that could be made a runner. So, when then 1973 Triumph TR6 showed up here on eBay I took notice. It has that scruffy look I was going for, but this one needs some work on the floors and the engine before anybody will be driving it anywhere. Still with prices climbing for anything relatively interesting, “$3,800 or best offer” doesn’t seem entirely off. The car is located in Wylie, Texas and has a clear title. The seller mentions that the engine will not turn over with a key and battery, so you will want to confirm that it’s not seized up before sending any money.

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Comments

  1. Peter

    I LOVE these! Thanks for the write up!

    There was also a cool hardtop option, but I think that is rare.

    LOVE the big, 15″ wheels! They don’t draw attention in today’s 20″+ wheel-world, but back then, most foreign cars were scurrying around on 13″ wheels, 14″ at best. The muscular, “minimalist” (Italian designed) body, in combo with the big wheels (which are SUPPOSED to have “beauty rings” and “Redline” tires (yes, just like a GTO!) made a powerful statement, back in the “small wheels” era.

    While I’m no expert in these (never yet even had the opportunity to SIT in one–LOL) I’m concerned that the floor pan rust could also involve the inner rockers. Doesn’t that look like old, fiberglas-reinforced “Claw Glas” or “Tiger Hair” body filler, on the P/S inner rocker? (As in, it was “cheese-grated” and left, unsanded and unpainted? Those fiberglas-reinforced body fillers are typically WATERPROOF, leading one to not worry about painting over it (ask me how I know–LOL).

    There also appears to be rust in the well under the convertible top.

    Why does it appear that the driver’s side of the “tunnel” is made of wet Masonite, of which large pieces are missing, letting us see the left side of the transmission? (And were these tranny’s aluminum, as this one appears to be, or were they cast iron? Just wondering if someone swapped in a modern, 5-speed?).

    I know there was an issue with a bearing wearing prematurely in the IRS’s “third member” (i.e., the differential), at least in some years.

    If it has the optional “Laycock de Normanville” overdrive, it allows SPLIT-SHIFTING, in 3rd and 4th (like a dump truck! LOL), for a defacto SIX SPEED! There are issues with those units, but I believe their is decent, but not cheap, aftermarket support, as there is/are known pattern failures in the overdrive unit. But it is still a VERY desirable option when you can find one. Unknown if this one has it–I don’t even know HOW to tell if it’s present–can someone more knowledgeable clarify?

    If it was local, I’d be going to look. But I’d bring an icepick (frame/body corrosion detector) and I’d get a PPI from an expert, before I purchased.

    I’ve followed these for a long time. These routinely have “asks” of $17,000-18,000., but seeing “asks” of $30K+ are not uncommon, for exceptional examples, in Hemmings.

    I would LOVE a TR6 RAT ROD! But the corrosion has me worried. However, IF aftermarket panels exist (which I suspect they do) and there’s no major mechanical issues, AND the rust is not a killer, it might be worth something less than the BIN price.

    Any mistakes are my fault, but I wrote this half-asleep. So please “be gentle.” LOL

    • Cameron Bater UK

      I do believe you’re right I think they did do a Hart top but rather than it being a “Stock” thing to do it was an optional extra, at point of purchase you could buy a hard top that then bolted on in the winter. Ive seen many roofs on convirtable cars and I think Ford even produced a bolt on Fastback roof for the Mustang.

  2. Howard Member

    Sadly, nowadays, this is the only way to get into a TR-6 without taking a 2nd loan on the house. As Peter sez, TR-6’s have really jumped in value for clean ones (what hasn’t) Being a body-on-frame car, the rust isn’t a total washout, unlike my MGB, with similar rust, it began to sag in the middle with both doors open. The OD unit is a very good unit, and was used in many applications, although, I don’t remember being able to get 3rd over in my MG. Rear suspension is a high wear item, which is why, I’m told, you always saw these with abnormal camber(?) on the rear wheels. Even at this price for a #4 car, it looks like my hopes of owning one are rapidly waning.

  3. Cameron Bater UK

    My father owns a TR6 along with an MGB GT, and a Dolomite Sprint. We also found a Ferguson TEA 20 in one of our side stores recently and subsequently sold it to our friends, it was only the 25 HP one (really its the 30 you want) but it was nice.

  4. Bruce Rolfe

    Gentlemen,
    If you are serious about owning a TR-6 or need parts. I am the person you want to talk to. Josh and Jesse did a story last year about my fathers collection of cars, the majority are Triumph TR-6’s. We have them ranging in price from $500-$10000 and parts. Lets just say we have enough to build a couple TR-6’s.
    If you really want one let me know. 208-447-Six Nine Nine 3

  5. Alan (Michigan)

    I’m thinking that the electric overdrive could even be used in 2nd gear. I can’t say for sure that a modification of some sort was not required to enable it, as the car I saw use it was in a class which allowed some changes. The engine sound as the OD engaged at WOT in 2nd is one that is hard to forget, particularly since the car was massaged, and had a performance-tuned exhaust. Extra sweet.

  6. Keruth

    Oh, this is rough.
    Everything is available for these, (even the frames from RatCo) and, this one will need it! Looks like it came from up here in the “rust belt”.
    Rear frame needs PPI (ice pick?) around suspension attachment points, “T-shirt” panel on frame collected water and rusted badly.
    NO OD on this, (and only worked in 3/4) would have second stalk on left side of steering wheel (factory added an “O” on the ends of #’s too).
    If an interior looks like this, a major effort will be needed to ward off the “Prince of Darkness”, LOL!
    2k and another 10k over 4/5 yrs. to get to a 12k car! (sans paint now).
    @$3800 too much for a non-running project.
    Buy the best you can afford and enjoy it!
    Keith, in soggy N.E. Ohio.

  7. RickyM

    Quite like the look of the wood pannelled Jeep in the background………

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