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Homepage. This page: An interesting project that could be a great everyday-use classic.

Case No.10
Make: Triumph
Model: Vitesse 6 (Mk1)
Year: 1963?

Sold on: eBay
Category: Classic Cars
Black Triumph Vitesse 1600 on eBay
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Project description.

A comfortable four-seat saloon, fitted with a smooth straight-six engine, and benefiting from not only a heater but very useful opening quarterlights (ie perfect for winter use), and a towbar for those trips to the tip, suggest that this 1,596cc Triumph Vitesse 6 could make for a great "daily driver" classic. The excellent spare parts availability would also help to make life with today's Crumbling Classic a non-too-painful proposition.
This example of the (latterly known as the Mk1) Vitesse, currently residing in a garage in North Wales, has been out of action for some time but, the listing advises, runs nicely having been recently serviced. Although I cannot see a mention of its build year, the distinctive registration number would seem to date to mid/late 1963, which coincides with production of this model. As the car has it's logbook, and some interesting service history by all accounts, the number should be able to remain on this attractive and very usable classic.
Vitesses, just like the Herald on which they are based, can rot away merrily. The separate chassis can lead to scruffy examples soldiering on for more years than a contemporary Austin or Morris in similar condition, but it'll pay to have a close look at the outriggers that run behind the (screw-on) sill covers, and also those at the rear that run below the boot floor, another common rust area. Thanks to the aforementioned parts availability for these small Triumphs, corrosion isn't necessarily a reason to reject a car like this, but the costs of repairing the frilly corners will need to be factored in when purchasing this restoration project. Overall though the bodywork doesn't look beyond hope, even taking into account the infestations of metal moth that can be seen around the lower corners of the lift-forward bonnet, and the door skins. Whether the paint itself is original I'm not quite sure, but it's certainly been on there a while and most, if not all of it, could have been applied at Canley in the early 1960s.
Moving around the car, all the fiddly little trim pieces are present, including the aluminium "bumper" cappings, and the "Vitesse 6" rear boot script. The towbar is wired for a trailer rather than a caravan, so hopefully the independent rear suspension hasn't been too overloaded with towing duties.Whether this example has the desirable overdrive gearbox isn't mentioned.
Two things stand out for me with this car - its apparent originality, and the stunning interior. The costs of re-furbishing a tired set of interior trim, or the time required to source good secondhand replacements, shouldn't be under-estimated. The red interior on this car, and the woodwork, all look good, complemented by a period radio to match the aerial fitted to the rear panel.
With some sensitive re-commissioning work, this Triumph could look great. I'd keep the original old numberplates, with their raised letters and aged look to them, and get someone who knows what they're doing to attend to the bodywork (and subsequent paintwork repairs) as necessary. The listing also mentions that there are quite a few spares included in the sale, the original steering wheel being amongst them.
As a project, the Vitesse looks like it shouldn't need an epic amount of work to get it back on the road. The entire body bolts on to the chassis underneath, which makes repair work more straightforward than with some of its monocoque, or uni-body, contemporaries. The tilt-forward bonnet makes working on the engine a doddle, and while some parts for the 1600cc engine are getting trickier to find - compared to the later 2 litre version at any rate - there shouldn't be too many headaches in store with regard to finding parts to get this car sorted out. If I had the space I'd be half-tempted myself, having sampled the aural delights of Triumph's straight-six many years ago in a modified Spitfire I once owned. Did you end up saving this example?
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