This car competed in the Alpine, Tulip, Spa-Sofia-Liege and RAC Rallies, driven by John Sprinzel in 62 and by Vic Elford in 63. It will be visiting our show in 2016.
One of the works team of 4 rally cars that was campaigned by Triumph in Europe in 1962/63, this car’s best result was 3rd in the 1963 Tulip Rally.
Triumph modified the cars quite a bit to make them competitive. The engine was about 40% more powerful than the standard cars, and the bodywork was aluminium to save weight. Autocar tested 3VC against a standard TR4 and said that the modifications had halved the car’s 0-100mph time. Also, the chassis was extensively reinforced to cope with rough rally stages (most European mountain passes were still gravel surfaced in the 60s),
In reality, the 4 cars weren’t really strong enough to survive the rough European rally stages, and they struggled to compete with the big Healeys and Porsche 356s of the day, so Triumph decided to retire them at the end of 1963.
At the end of 1964 3VC was sold off, to a student at Rochester State University. He kept the car until 1995 when Neil Revington persuaded him that it was time for something more modern. Neil refurbished the car preserving the original chassis, engine, transmission, and alloy body, and the car has been used for classic rallies and touring ever since (800km touring range from the big fuel tank).
The car is still used for regularity rallies (it has achieved quite a few class wins and good placings) and for touring. We took the car through the Alps to Cortina to celebrate its 50th birthday.
Article submitted by: Gareth and Ursula Firth