Ads on Test: 1976 Triumph TR6


Classic Cars magazine

by Charlie Calderwood |

This TR6 isn’t the most perfect or sought-after, but that just makes it all the more usable, reckons Charlie Calderwood

This isn’t how most Triumph fans picture the perfect TR6, with its left-hand drive and US-spec carburettors, but we were thoroughly impressed with it despite these factors. What’s more, it hasn’t been fully rebuilt, which is rare among surviving TR6s today.

It has clearly been resprayed. A serial restorer familiar to the vendor breathed new life into the car during 2018 and 2019 and the yellow paint is suitably fresh as a result. There are a few tiny cracks in the paintwork in the seams between panels, but that’s unavoidable; the paintwork is otherwise flawless. The chromework is very good too, and the characteristic ‘washing machine’ steel wheels are in good shape, though a few of the centre caps are a bit scuffed. All of the tyres are dated 2018 and show good tread. The hood appears to be in good condition too. The front splitter contrasts well with the yellow paintwork, and is in good condition.

Classic Cars magazine
©Classic Cars magazine

An aftermarket dark burr walnut dash is fitted in place of the satin finish non-burr walnut standard item and it’s in good shape too. Unfortunately, the dash top bears the scars of the one drawback of that Arizona climate – it has warped from the sun and doesn’t line up on top of the dash properly, leaving an unsightly gap. The leather on the aftermarket wheel is a bit worn too, but we’re pleased to see the original is included with the car. The dash buttons, labels and instrument bezels are clearly original, and are all a bit faded, but the rest of the interior is in great shape, with fresh seat covers and good carpets.

Classic Cars magazine
©Classic Cars magazine

It’s strange seeing a pair of SUs in a TR6. They’re a retro-fit, but the vendor remarked to us that they are easier to maintain than the Lucas fuel injection set-up. Everything in the engine bay, in fact, has been cleaned up if not replaced and it’s a show-standard engine bay, if not quite concours. We couldn’t find any leaks on the engine or anywhere else, and accessory components like the alternator, battery, radiator and brake servo all look new – which an accompanying wad of invoices confirm.

This example feels tighter and sharper than the vast majority of TR6s that we’ve tested; not having been apart for a full rebuild might explain why. It’s probably slightly down on power compared to UK TR6s thanks to those carburettors, but the engine starts up easily and ran well for our entire test drive, holding good oil pressure and temperature too.

We found the gearchange slick (not something that can be said of all TR6s) but most joyous of all was the steering in suspension – it just feels ‘right’. Everything is linear, there are no nasty bumps and, joy of joys, the body doesn’t rattle around like so many do. It’s the best driving TR6 this tester has experienced. Unfortunately, there’s just one document that predates the car’s import into the UK in 2018.

If you’re only going to drive it occasionally (or even better, in Europe) the left-hand drive won’t be so bothersome, and in our book, the condition of this example makes it worth considering.

This Triumph TR6 is one of four Ads on Test in the latest issue of Classic Cars.

Engine 2498cc straight-six, ohv, two SU HS6 carburettors Power 103bhp @ 4500rpm Torque 142lb ft @ 3000rpm 0-60mph 9.5sec Top speed 109mph Fuel consumption 20-35mpg Length 3950mm Width 1550mm

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