A 73-mile, unregistered Triumph TR8 will be offered by Historics Auctions at its 25 September sale, some 41 years after leaving the production line… but there is a catch
The opportunity to own this extraordinarily rare example of Triumph’s final sports car comes via Historics’ Autumn sale at Ascot Racecourse. It’s an unregistered, pre-production, right-hand drive 1980 Triumph TR8 convertible.
This car is part of a pre-production batch of RHD cars that ended up being disposed of by British Leyland following its decision to kill the TR7 and TR8 in 1981.
Presented in its original colour combination of Pendelican White over a tan interior, this genuine Triumph TR8 automatic convertible – its authenticity and pre-production status are verified by its British Motoring Heritage Certificate – was purchased new and owned by the vendor for 41 years, but never registered.
Garage stored until recently, it requires complete restoration and represents a unique and immensely rewarding opportunity to bring back to life and enjoy a fascinating part of British sports car history, 41 years after it was produced.
What would you be taking on?
Richard Connew of the World Wide TR7 TR8 Owners Club reckons this is going to be a very interesting project for anyone who takes it on. He says: ‘The main problem is the parts particular to a TR8, air boxes on the one are incredibly rare. Most of the body panels are again very, very difficult to get hold of.
‘The interior is a very rare tan velour which is also incredibly rare. I also noted it has the very late push button instrument panel which I don’t think I’ve ever seen on a right-hand drive TR8 before. It only appears on the very last of the line TR8s.’
He added: ‘To rebuild this one doesn’t look like an easy task on what I think the body is like from the photos – might be wrong as it’s better to see in person, but to re-shell it into a good TR7 body and restore the TR8 parts is easily doable.’
Richard concluded: ‘This Triumph TR8 was built as a 1981 model year car, even though the chassis plate says it was a 1980 model year car built at Solihull. That was probably because they took a 1980 TR7 off the line and didn’t change the chassis number.’
Classic car specialist Anthony Godin, who recently unearthed the car commented: ‘Something of this scale with its pre-production, low mileage history really is unprecedented.’
For full information and bidder registration, in hall, by phone and online, visit www.historics.co.uk.