It’s Spitting in Washington – Triumph Spitfire x2

Triumph Spitfires have always held a certain attraction to me since I lusted over a very sad looking one parked in a neighbor’s side yard when I was a kid. His was also an earlier model, so while the later 1500 cars redone by Michelotti are a cleaner, better-looking design, these are special in their own right. And while they’re not terribly powerful, their simplicity and lightness makes them a pretty compelling sportscar. Swing axles might make for an interesting driving experience, but again, you won’t be going too fast in one of these.

Check out this example with much recent work and the bidding at $1400 with 3 days to go. The reserve has not been met, but can’t be much higher than the current bid price.

1968 Triumph Spitfire rear

Reasonably tidy rear end. Unfortunately it’s had a bit of a parking lot tussle and shows the repair on the rear corner, but the seller is offering to repair that at additional cost. Notice the quad exhausts (overkill? maybe?) and the period alloy wheels. The factory hardtop is installed, while the soft top has a tear in it. The Mk III lost its bumper overriders and got reverse lights, which make for a somewhat cleaner design.

1968 Triumph Spitfire front

The front looks pretty clean, and you can see the shine on that hardtop. Definitely good inspiration to put in a few hours with some water, 2000-grit sandpaper, and wax to clean the whole thing up and have it back to proper red. I’m not generally a fan of red convertibles, but the smaller they are, the more tolerable it is, since their size makes them less flashy. And it’s not like something this low-powered is going to get you pulled over on 101 anyway.

1968 Triumph Spitfire interior

Check out those center-mount gauges, just like in my Alfetta! Well, okay, not quite, but even these guys weren’t the first to do this, but this is the only year Mark IIIs had this in the US. Notice the original steering wheel with leather wrap, and an aftermarket oil pressure gauge in front of it. Good thing to keep an eye on your engine when you only have 3 main bearings! There’s some cracking in the middle of the dash, and tear in the driver’s seat bolster, both not seen in this picture. However, they don’t detract from the original look of the car.

1968 Triumph Spitfire engine

Lastly, the super-easy-access engine. If it’s like I imagine, instead of leaning over a fender and hoping you don’t scratch or drop a tool on it, you just fold up the whole front end of the car and sit comfortably on one of the front wheels while happily wrenching away. This scenario also includes someone bring me cold drinks when it’s hot, and hot drinks when it’s cold, so I’m guessing it’s not for real. Twin (rebuilt) carbs, aftermarket headers, a new alternator, a rebuilt ignition system and new braking components suggest the car should be a reliable companion. Important bits like the cardboard fairings to channel the air into the radiator are also present.

And if that’s too rich for your blood, here’s a slightly more downmarket, but similar looking, 1967 Mark II model. It’s got overdrive and a bit of recent work, but also some rust in the passenger sill and door, riveted in sheetmetal floors, and a corroded battery box. The stock hubcaps and unusual luggage rack add some character, though. It’s only at $810 with no reserve and 2 days to go.

1967 Triumph Spitfire left

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