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Unearthed: 1972 Triumph TR6

Classic Cars / 18 Comments

Like many other British-built roadsters, the Triumph TR6 was fun to drive but highly unreliable.

The Triumph TR6 remains one of the most instantly recognizable and popular classic British roadsters of its era. Today, as we all know, those looking to buy a safe, reliable, fun-to-drive and affordable roadster need to look no further than the Mazda MX-5. But that car's inspiration came directly from the UK which has a wonderful history of building some of the coolest two-seat drop tops ever made such as the Triumph TR6. First unveiled in 1969, the TR6 was a replacement for the TR5, sold as the TR250 in the US.

Although the TR6 somewhat resembled its TR5 predecessor, its front and rear-end styling were more squared off, thanks to influence from Karmann, the German auto design and manufacturing firm that also specializes in convertibles. Power came from a 2.5-liter inline six-cylinder engine with fuel injection that produced about 145 horsepower upon the car's launch in the UK. However, TR6s sold outside of the US were later detuned to 125 hp in an effort to make them easier to drive. US buyers could get a TR6 that was good for 104 hp, but despite the lower power, these models were actually more reliable and were also carbureted.

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All engines, however, were mated to a four-speed manual transmission that came with an optional overdrive feature. Some other nice mechanical bits included an independent rear suspension and rack and pinion steering. Performance was never one of the TR6's strong points, as it took 8.2 seconds to go from 0-60 mph and had a top speed of 120 mph. These certainly weren't horrible numbers for its day but were far from anything in the true performance realm. The interior was typically British in nature mainly due to its wooden dashboard. Buyers could also check the box for an optional factory produced steel hardtop. Cars equipped with that feature are actually a bit harder to find today.

Like many other British-built cars, the TR6 had an old-fashioned body-on-frame construction as opposed to a unibody design. Yet the TR6 turned out to be very popular in the US with over 96,600 units produced between 1969 and 1976, only 8,370 of which were for the UK market. This 1972 Triumph TR6 currently up for grabs on eBay has been given a solid restoration. Painted in British Racing Green with a black interior, its chrome body work is also in excellent condition. Its exact mileage hasn't been given and the current bid is just $6,100 as of writing.