|Hammer value||N/S (est. £2,750 - £3,250)|
|Description||Triumph TR7 Grinnall V8|
|Engine size||3,526 cc|
As early as 1972 Triumph had shoe-horned a V8 into the prototype TR7. Due to the high costs and early reliability issues associated with Triumph’s own V8, BL only considered using the Rover 3.5 V8 unit. The issue with this engine was supply.
With the new Range Rover selling like hot cakes, priority was not given to the new “Bullet” project from Triumph. Over 145 Rover V8-engined prototypes were produced all told, being sold off once work was completed. Sadly it was not to be until 1979 that the TR8 proper was introduced, the bulk of which went to the US market. The poor TR7 didn’t get much of a start in life, initially only available as a coupe and then relying on only one engine - the 2-litre 8-valve with 105bhp.
The lack of soft top was not addressed until 1979 when Michelotti re-styled the coupe into the contemporary looking TR7 convertible. This was probably too little too late but the car did look good. It took others to overcome the lack of V8 power, the principal exponents of this being Grinnall Cars of Bewdley who offered a proper V8 conversion. This included not only changing the engine, but the final drive too. The car that should have been launched back in 1974 when the TR7 first hit the market had finally arrived. All told Grinnall have undertaken some 330 conversions.
On offer from a deceased estate, this car was purchased in 1993 and used each summer and garaged during the winter. It was re-sprayed red some time ago and is fitted with an Edlebrock inlet manifold and 4-barrel Holley carburettor. We are advised that it has SD1 4-pot callipers at the front and had a replacement TR7 gearbox fitted a few years ago. Due to the fitment of this and the taller rear axle ratio the speedometer under-reads, something the new owner will definitely wish to know!
MOTd until June 2013 this car would make an ideal running project, there being a few areas of paintwork that could be improved on what is otherwise an interesting and potent machine.