Garaged 30 Years: 1962 Triumph TR3B

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Triumph TR3s are no stranger to Barn Finds but they are to me as I have covered 4s, 6s, and 7s but I don’t believe that I have eyeballed a 3. This 1962 example is referenced as a garage find and it certainly looks the part, it has a few bruises and contusions but these are always interesting finds and their found condition often spans the ridiculous to the sublime. How’s this example stack up? Let’s investigate and find out. It’s located in Kansas City, Kansas and is available, here on craigslist for $16,500. Thanks to T.J. for this tip!

First offered in 1955, the TR3 continued, in its various iterations, through the 1962 model year. That makes our example, technically, a TR3B and an end of the line model. Almost 75K TR3s found owners in its eight model years of production so it was a popular seller.

While I prefer the lines of the more modern-looking TR4 successor, buyers, in general, didn’t as the TR3 outsold the TR4 by an almost two-to-one margin. And there’s definitely an old-school/new-school physical comparison that is evident, certainly evident for the early sixties. Our subject car looks complete and the seller claims “no rust” the bane of so many Triumphs, and British sports cars in general. The finish, in this case, isn’t bad, but there is some evidence of scrapes and scratches but it’s all minor stuff. It also appears that the bumpers & bumper guards have experienced their fair share of bumpin’ – they’re not in seriously damaged condition, mind you, they have just sen some action. The trim, badging, etc. all look like it’s still in place.

Being a late-produced model, this Triumph has a 105 HP, 2.1 liter, in-line, four-cylinder engine, that unfortunately, doesn’t run. There is no other detail about the powerplant though it looks complete – it would be helpful to know if it will turn over by hand.  A four-speed manual transmission provides the hook up to the rear wheels.

The interior’s condition is in concert with that of the exterior – it’s worn, but not worn out. The seating upholstery is wrinkled and faded but not ripped and the carpet is in better shape than I would have thought. The instrument panel shows a full complement of gauges and switchgear but the center binnacle could stand some refinishing. This TR3 has a folding convertible top, perhaps missing its fabric, but note the tonneau cover studs attached to the top of the dash.

This Triumph gets marks for its originality and completeness and that’s probably what’s driving the ask, in spite of its non-running condition. The paucity of listing details is unfortunate but there’s enough here to bait the hook and dig a bit deeper if a TR3 is on your bucket list, wouldn’t you agree?

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  1. HadTwo

    Had one! Sure miss it! But the suspension seems to be the foam
    padding in the seat cushion…that is resting on the floor.
    Good for, and lots of fun, for about ten mile trips.
    Have an MGB now, more comfortable on longer drives.
    But…….that TR3B was a blast!…Maybe two cars?

    Like 4
  2. CCFisher

    Is that a trailer hitch?

    Like 2
  3. Glenn ReynoldsMember

    I would think it should at least be running for $16.5K

    Like 3
  4. ChingaTrailer

    Yes that’s a trailer hitch – I guess you could say he had balls . . . or at least one . . .

    Like 2
  5. Bill bowman

    A tr3b was my first new car. Loved it. Hated Lucas wiring. My guess on bumper dents was push starts from other cars because of Lucas electric problems. Never noticed a bad ride, just enjoyed the thrill of driving it. Drove from Pgh pa to Columbus Ohio and cruised at 86/90 mph whenever I could.
    Would if I could have it.

    Like 1
  6. Andrew S MaceMember

    I’m not convinced it’s a TR3B. It does show all the signs of at least a very late TR3A, but without seeing the commission number, body number (and/or engine number), it’s hard to be sure, especially looking at that TR3A-style valve cover.

    Like 0
    • Chinga-Trailer

      A true TR3B number will begin either TCF or TCL

      Like 0
      • Andrew S MaceMember

        The first 500 or so had TSF prefixes, then the remaining 2800 or so had the TCF prefix (with the 2.1 engine and full-synchro gearbox).

        Like 0
      • Chinga-Trailer

        Andrew Mace – you are correct. The TSF prefix cars were identical to TR3As with the slightly smaller TR3 engine and non-synchro first transmission. The TCF series had the larger TR4 engine and fully synchro gear box. It’s been probably 35 years since my last TR, a TCF series TR3B. My first TR3 was a very early “small mouth” from 1956, the 12th one built and the NY & L.A. Auto Show car – that was nearly 50 years ago!

        Like 0
  7. Frank DMember

    Always liked the TR3’s.

    Like 0
  8. Gerard Frederick

    I had a TR3-B way back in the day. My then wife hated it, so of course it had to go; a cracked fly wheel and the Lucas (none)starter made the decision a bit easier. Well, turns out I should have kept it and gotten rid of the wife instead. The car was an absolute gas, she despite her gorgeous looks, not so much.

    Like 2
  9. Bill bowman

    I remember I was told they had run out of 3a drivetrains and still had 3a bodies so they used the 4 a drivetrains with full sync transmission and bigger engine, tr3b.

    Like 0

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