Parked 15 Years: 1972 Triumph TR6 Garage Find

There was a lot of buzz in the hallways of my small high school back in 1969. All the girls were going gaga over the new math teacher. And why not. He was right out of college, handsome, single, and dressed in an impeccable Ivy League style. Oh yeah, and he drove a brand-new Jasmine yellow Triumph TR6 sports car. Game, set, match to Mr. Eib, the new math teacher. Well, here’s your chance to go gaga a bit and enjoy what some say is the last of the classic British roadsters. This recently awakened and revived barn find 1972 TR6 is located in Prospect, PA and is for sale here on eBay. As of this writing, 17 bids had been submitted to the tune of $4,827, which was short of the seller’s reserve.

The seller shares that this TR6 was recently purchased from an estate and had been sitting in barn storage since 2005. The seller drained and refilled all the fluids, performed a tune up, replaced the clutch master cylinder and cluth slave cylinder, installed new spark plugs and a new battery and says “she started right up, purrs like a kitten. Runs and drives’ shifts into all gears!” Based on the photos, this appears to be a sound, solid TR6. Its Code 96 Sapphire paint ain’t bad (the seller shows photos of a mystery spill behind the rear window that when washed, seemed to peel off) and I didn’t see any body rot.

You gotta love that rear deck luggage rack, but the black convertible top looks a tad tired and could probably stand to be replaced. The seller also notes and shows photos of “a small area that has been repaired; the rear frame by trailing arm.”  I like the redline tires, too, on this TR6  but the seller warns they’re over 20 years old and don’t hold air, so the next owner won’t be driving this Triumph back home.

We’re told the Trim Code 11 Black interior is original (although the seller states that the TR6 was completely restored at one time). I wish there were more photos, but the black bucket seats and carpet look presentable and the photo of the walnut veneered “full instrumentation dash” with its original Triumph radio looks very good for its age. A classic, cozy British roadster cabin for sure.

Under that front-hinged blue bonnet rests the proven TR6’s 2.5-liter straight-six engine mated to a 4-speed manual transmission. U.S. market versions of the TR6 came with twin carburetors and, thanks to a lower compression ratio, produced 104 horsepower (UK version TR6’s were fuel injected and rated at 150 horsepower and later tuned to 124 horsepower.) The seller has receipts from 1990 when the engine was disassembled and rebuilt with all new parts and the camshaft was reground. There’s also a mention and photos of receipts of other work performed in 1998/99. The odometer is listed at 15,902, although the seller believes the odometer was reset to zero when the engine was rebuilt, but has no way of proving it. I’ve always liked the squarish nose and tail of the TR6 which was designed by coachbuilder Karmann of Germany, and from what I found online, these cars are fun to drive. I have to agree with others who regard the TR6 as the last “proper” Triumph produced. It just oozes classic British roadster from every angle and still looks good today.

Comments

  1. Bamapoppy

    I once sat in one of these and it was quite cramped for me compared to the MGB that I thought of buying back in the mid-70’s. Oh, well. GLWTS.

    Like 1
    • Dan

      You were probably smaller when you sat in the B. Cockpit size is comparable

      Like 7
      • angliagt angliagt Member

        I’ve both a TR6 & an MGB GT.
        The MGB has a lot more legroom.

      • Bamapoppy

        Dan, God made us all different. I have found that I do not fit into the “90th percentile man” that engineers use to design vehicle interiors. I stand by my statement and refer you to angliagt below.

  2. Dickie F.

    At 66 yrs old, I have owned about the same amount of cars in my lifetime. Most fall into the category of ” wish I had kept that one” but two which I have never owned, remain as must haves. The VW Puma and the TR6.
    The Puma because of the reliability and low running costs. The TR6 because of just the fun factor And the photo on the back cover of the local telephone directory, when I was a junior in high school, of a young executive exiting his TR6 in a early morning New York city.
    One day I will have both cars.

    Like 12
    • RexFox Member

      The TR6 may be the best looking car Triumph ever made, for sure better than the 7s and 8s. And that straight 6 is darned sweet.

      Like 12
  3. Alan Brand

    That “mystery spill” is probably the result of sloppy refueling and not immediately wiping up the spilled gas.
    I ran a TR6 in the mid-sixties for two years as my only car. It handled Ontario snow, Florida & Texas heat, and everything between with great aplomb.

    Like 5
  4. John miller

    The first year for TR6’s was 1969. I doubt you ran one in the mid 60’s.

    Like 2
  5. James Simpson

    British cars are a lot of fun for the often “Exceptional Value” and the availability of nearly every part. Drive them and love them. If you do not have mechanical abilities, then buy a Miata. They combine the experience, yet also the longevity similar to Toyota.

    Like 6
  6. Cam W.

    Two TR6 memories:
    My high-school buddy’s older sister’s new boyfriend showed up in one of these. I remember being impressed as I saw it for the first time, at a distance. Up close. Not so much. It was only two years old, and already begun to rust badly. It was bubbling through in multiple areas. It looked like a nasty case of acne.
    My older, cool cousin, Kevin (looked and acted like the Fonz) had a souped up TR6, painted (mostly) flat-black. It was noisy, fast and ratty. He took me for a wild ride once, and when we went over a set of train-tracks, the glove box burst open, and basically barfed scads of traffic tickets.

    Like 11
  7. Johnmloghry johnmloghry

    Well the time has come for me to admit I’ve always liked the looks of these British cars. May be the only English car I ever admired. I wonder what a new set of tires like those cost. The red lines definitely set the appearance standard for me. I’m very tempted to bid on this one, at least to a certain point below the $10 grand point, if it goes over that it will belong to someone else.

    God Bless America

    Like 6
    • Russell

      I wonder what a new set of tires like those cost. … about 200-250 each. IF you really really gotta have the red lines

      Like 2
    • angliagt angliagt Member

      Coker Tire has Redlines – but be prepared to pay the price.
      At least you can still get them.

      Like 1
  8. Steve Carlsen

    I’m not a TR expert by any means but that frame repair scares me. I know these cars are subject to frame rot and the repair looks a bit crude. There could be more and an expert inspection would be indicated. Otherwise looks to be a sweet car.

    Like 2
    • Pete_W.

      If I remember correctly, certain year TR6 models (if not all of them) had a reputation for frame cracking at the rear crossmember which carries the differential. I had a stint selling Porsches and Audis for a short time in the mid 70’s and we had a lovely yellow TR6 on the used car lot. A young lady had her eye on it for some time, finally spent all the money on the purchase, and a month or two later brought it back in tears because of the frame issue. Not only did she not have the money needed to fix it, but getting the dealer to pick up the tab was an exercise in futility. That was pretty much all of the car bidness I could stomach. I baled soon afterwards.

  9. jim l nashwinter

    I had a 71 tr6 in the 70s??Got drunk and tore up rear suspension??So took body off rebuilt rear and added a 9in ford rear and 350 chev??It was a rocket??But handeled very well??And Very fast;loved it??I have a 77 b and just pulled engine and trans to repair engine??Wont stay in time??I think the cam is broke??Or cam gear key broke??Never saw this except the 70s olds cams breaking??Mgs are undestructible??Like an 8n ford tractor??Will have it apart this week and follow up??JIM SR

    Like 1
    • angliagt angliagt Member

      WOW! – That’s a LOT of question marks!

  10. bobhess bobhess Member

    Nice car. These don’t have the finesse of the earlier models, what with the big six, hefty clutch and transmission you’ve got something fast and rugged. Suspension is a bit soft but that’s and easy fix. Agree the car is good looking along with with the TR4.

    Like 3
  11. stanley j kwiecinski

    owned a 71 pimento red with fake wire wheels. on the highway coming home; felt like a loose tie rod? got stopped in a dope hood. no plates! just bought it? Barney Fief type. got home made a left to garage it; left wheel fell off! saved money on tie rods they were good. backing into a space by the bar left rear suspension ripped off frame! wipers only worked when i aimed at pot holes. hood release unclipped itself. had to torch a hole to open the hood. was fun!!! except when they stole my radio weekly. …did i ever tell you about my 66 MGB?

    Like 4
  12. Kenn

    OH OH! Somebody’s going to buy a car from an opportunist flipper!

  13. SMS

    My mom had the sports cars. She had a 240Z, MGB, and a TR6. Was a great car. Just got my license and she let me drive her new TR6 after I washed it. That meant it got washed a lot.

    I think the blue is a very good color for these cars. She had a red one and it looked good too.

    I have had a number of Triumphs. Think the TR3 is the sportiest and most fun to drive. The TR6, well now that I am in my 60s I am thinking this would be a great choice. They are comfortable, sound right, look right, reliable, easy to work on.

    Saw one at the local sandwich shop the other day. Did not remember them being so small though. It was tiny next to a new Corolla.

    Agree on having the frame repair checked out. A known issue and can be an expensive mistake if not repaired well.

    Like 3
  14. Robert G Thomas

    I saw one of these recently finished in a non-standard pewter color and it looked and sounded fabulous.

    Like 1
  15. 914Shifter Member

    I have owned several of these through the years and loved every one. I still think they are a great collector value car, having the 6 cylinder motor to favor over so many other 4 cylinder sports cars. Don’t own one currently, but still saving a left over set of dual carbs and stock air cleaner in case I ever need it on a future project…

  16. Bobby

    From my memory these would rust about as quickly as a Chevy Vega

  17. MarkO

    Bobby
    Maybe you’re thinking of a COSWORTH Vega???

  18. chrlsful

    hrd tops looked sooo much better, no?

    No – I’m thinkin mgb gt (& the final hada buick alu bent8
    that Rover bought).

  19. V8roller

    The chassis where the trailing arms attach, those sections tend to rust out.
    I had them replaced on my TR6. On this car, do I see holes where they join the frame?
    Had an MGC, and later the TR6 (UK car, injection). The C/B is more roomy. The TR6 is only 4’10” wide, feels like sitting in a throbbing torpedo of machinery.
    Had MX5/Miata seats in mine, at 6’0″ and 32″ inseam, only just enough leg room.
    Does this one have overdrive? Pretty miserable on the highway without.
    As regards tyres, they also look good with narrow-band whites.
    It’s a great driver’s car. Had mine five years and I miss it sometimes.

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