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Triumph Gloria (BLE 62).

Four photos all featuring the Triumph Gloria saloon of the mid-1930s open this new page on Old Classic Car, and were provided by site visitor Peter Baxter. The first three were taken of his grandfather's Gloria saloon, registration BLE 62, parked on a grass verge adjoining a country road, during - it would seem - the same stop. Looking up the registration confirms that this car was registered in London, during October of 1934. In the first photo, we have a head-on view of the handsome Triumph. An extra spotlamp, and an AA member's badge, are the only obvious upgrades to be found on this example.
(Please click the thumbnail to view the full-size image.)
Front view of the Triumph Gloria
The following rear view of the car, clearly demonstrates the distinctively-shaped split rear window arrangements to be found on the saloon version.
Rear view of the Triumph Gloria
Next, a side-view of BLE 62. Two different wheelbases for the Gloria were offered at the time, and for each there were two engine options. The shorter wheelbase car - which is what's shown here - had a four-cylinder engine of either 1087cc or 1232cc capacity. The six-cylinder variant (with an extra eight inches in its wheelbase, and extra bonnet louvres) featured engines of either 1467cc or 1991cc, all of which were Coventry Climax designs built under licence by Triumph. In addition, there was the higher-performance version badged at the Gloria Vitesse. The Vitesse featured a higher specification including the standard fitment of twin carburettors - the name would return in the 1960s with the six-cylinder version of Triumph's Herald.
Side view
The fourth and last of Peter's photographs captures a line-up of Triumph Glorias at what must have been a club rally of some kind. Presumably, BLE 62 featured in the line-up somewhere, although neither of the two closest cars are it (registrations ?PC 250 and APO 546/8). Slightly different side window designs are in evidence with the saloons shown here.
A club meeting of Glorias
The location of this line-up is Heston Aerodrome, to the west of London, which was active between 1929 and 1947. It's perhaps best remembered for being the location of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's photograph, taken following his return trip from meeting Hitler in 1938, waving the piece of paper that ensured "Peace for our time", or not. Nowadays, Heston Services on the M4 motorway occupies part of what was the northern side of the aerodrome. An original concrete hangar from 1929 is preserved on the site.
My thanks to Peter for the photographs.

A modified Triumph Gloria.

Some years ago, I went to inspect a Gloria saloon that had been sat in a garage for a few years. At some point, probably in the 1950s, it had been "improved" by the fitment of Riley RM front wings. The conversion had been done well and they didn't look particularly out of place. I've a feeling that I've seen photographs of it in more recent times, with the correct front-end panel arrangements. Photographs and more information about the car, can be found here, within a section of the site given over to owners' car stories.
Return to Page 21 in the motoring image archive, or visit the main index of vintage & classic photographs here.

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