Driver Quality: 1962 Triumph TR3

1962-triumph-tr3

Yellow is my least favorite color, so normally I would pass on any car sporting this obnoxious hue. I think I could live with it on this old Triumph though. The swooping lines of the TR3 are already so eye catching that you might as well accept the fact that you are going to draw attention everywhere you go. This one has been sitting in a warehouse for the past 20 years, but the seller has since cleaned it up and made it safe to drive. Sounds good to me. Find it here on eBay in Jonesboro, Indiana where bidding is at $6,000 with no reserve. Thanks goes to Jim S for the tip!

tr3-engine

Color aside, this one looks like a decent driver. An inspection could clear up any concerns of body filler or rust before bidding. The seller has already addressed the brakes and suspension, but claims that it could benefit from a tune up. If it has really been sitting for two decades, I would assume that it is going to need a little more help than that. The fuel tank will most likely need to be cleaned up if it hasn’t already and a carb rebuild might help with the throttle response.

tr3-interior

The interior is a little shabby, but I would probably just address the largest irritants first before spending money on the cosmetics. This is a hard train of thought for many of us because there is just something in us that wants to fix the things we can see first. So, that is my advice to the next owner. Get it running, turning, and stopping well before doing anything else! Then just keep reminding yourself that you need to stay on track. I myself have succumbed to the temptation of focusing on the outside before addressing the heart of the car. But, trust me, it will save you money and make you happier in the long run.

tr3-rear

We all love original cars that have never been messed with. Truth is though, if you plan on driving it much, it is probably better to pick up something that is less than perfect. Then you dont have to feel bad about driving it in the rain or parking it on the street. Sometimes the beaters are the most fun because you can actually enjoy them without feeling guilty. These old cars were meant to be experienced out on the open road, not parked in a garage somewhere. I still really want one of these TR3s. Yes, even enough to buy a yellow one…

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Comments

  1. hhaleblian

    My second car in a long litany of rides. Sold my first car a 63 326 Lemans that I brought back from the dead at 15. Bought the TR3 at 17. Tractor engine, non synchro first, could hear it rust at night. Loved that damn thing.

    • paul

      Agreed, horrid color, but easy to change since these are as basic as they come, looks like a lot of plastic ( body filler) Ha good one hear it rust at night great find Jim S, love these.Unrestored? Yellow?

  2. Trent Poole

    That’s my idea of the perfect British Sports car, Used (not used up) and useable. If I had the $$ and time, I would bid on this one. Reminds me of my youngers years when all I would drive was old British roadsters.

  3. Rich

    Had a 59 and a 60 for parts. Rotted so bad I started to do a frame off resto and got obsessed with perfection. The wallet was getting really thin so I sold them and built a mud truck. Was so nice to just beat up an old truck and not sweat the perfection.

  4. Michael Phipps

    This TR3 would work quite well at a British car show that is tied to the SVRA vintage race at the end of every June at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Oh. Well worth the admission to see all of the cars on the infield across from start-finish and watch all of the classes going racing. Reminds me of the SCCA Runoffs held every year before they went away.

  5. MikeH

    The color yellow reminds me of the early 70s. I bought a bright yellow Fiat 124 Spider. Great car, tons of fun, but I was pulled over 5 times in the first 2 weeks. I admit to being an aggressive driver, but I didn’t really drive it that much differently from the VW type 3 I had before. I eventually sold the 124 and bought a grey Alfa GTV–no more problems. The Alfa was twice the car the Fiat was, but it was a sedan, grey and it flew under the radar–so to speak.

    • paul

      Yes I had a Fiat 850 spyder lime green, lost my drivers license for 6 months, traded up to an Alfa Romeo Duetto spyder dark blue, never had another bright color car since & have been flying under the radar-so to speak ever since 40+ years & a million+ miles.

  6. cory

    Love it. Love the yellow. But given that it’s an indiana car I can guarantee it is a mud bucket.

  7. Dolphin Member

    Love the yellow or hate it, it’s not the most extreme or unusual color a TR3 has ever been painted. Back some decades ago a famous race car driver named Donna Mae Mims raced a bugeye Sprite, an MGB, and then a TR3. All of them, and maybe more that I don’t know about, were painted shocking pink. To see pictures of the cars Google her name.

    She was a real competitor and won her first race in 1960 driving a F.I. Corvette. In ’63 she was SCCA class champion in her Sprite. Right after that I saw her race at the Thompson, CT track in her newly acquired TR3, which she qualified on pole. I’ve mentioned this before, but right now it bears mentioning again. In that first race with her TR3 she wasn’t very used to it I guess, and coming around the turn just before the sand pit she spun into the sand and flipped the TR3 over. I saw the whole thing from the high ridge above the sand pit. She got out, waved to the crowd, and received a big cheer.

    So at least one accomplished race car driver must have thought that yellow was too tame for her race cars, and maybe that’s why she painted them pink.

    BTW, she was executive secretary at Yenko Chevrolet in Canonsburg, PA>

    • jim s

      yes when i first saw the listing i though that at least it was not pink. then i though about the pink bugeye she had. thanks

      • Kman

        I had a ’59 TR3 and a’63 TR 4. Once saw a bright pink 3 in my mechanics shop. Story was she’d been hit 3 times but after the pink paint job never again, i guess if you get people’s attention they don’t run in to you. Nice find. Brings back memories.

        Like 1
  8. John

    Difficult to get past the color for me at least. About the only thing that would be worse would be pink.

  9. julian

    I owned a TR3 from 1964 until 2012.

    It left the factory in Powder Blue, someone sprayed it red and when I bought it, it was bright green. After I had a little “ding” it became metallic blue and finally in 2002 we did a complete rebuild and it went to British racing green. I was sorry to sell it in 2012, but needed something with more boot space for my wife’s luggage!

  10. Mya

    Is it me, or are those taillights the same as on a Jag XKSS?

  11. That Guy

    I actually tend to like yellow cars. A pale yellow ’65 Corvair Corsa with black interior and a 4-speed? Mmm, gets my fantasy juices flowing as much as Tom’s dad’s magazines in the garage loft back during those Boy Scout meetings… but I digress.

    But this yellow, on this car, doesn’t do anything for me. I’m with Jesse; it would have to go eventually. But on the plus side, it should keep the price reasonable. I’m watching this one on eBay.

  12. julian

    This one is actually a TR3A with the wide mouth grill and the extra rear lights inboard of the rear lights. I think these lights are standard Lucas parts and appeared on several different cars.

  13. scott allison

    A Navy chief I worked for had a powder blue TR3 and needed to borrow my El Camino to move some stuff… I traded him for the TR3 – Had that little baby for the entire day! I tore up some of the back roads on the Charleston Naval Station, and had a blast! Tight curves, and she hugged the road.

    Oh.. I have a 1975 Sunbright Yellow Corvette Stingray. Everyone loves the color!

  14. Dolphin Member

    Sold for exactly $10K, with 19 bids.

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