1964 Triumph TR4 'Surrey Top' Coupe
|Engine||In-line 4-cylinder, 2500cc|
|Gearbox||4-speed manual with overdrive|
Triumph's TR series sports cars proved worthy challengers to MG during the 1950s and 1960s and most agree the TR4, with its sweet styling by Italian designer Michelotti, was the best looking of all. From humble beginnings with the TR2, Triumph built more than 80,000 of the so-called 'sidescreen' TR2/3/3As by 1961 but when it came time for a replacement, an altogether more sophisticated sports car, with up to date styling and modern comforts, was called for. Launched in 1962, the TR4 largely retained the proven underpinings of the TR3A including the 2.2-litre four-cylinder engine developing a healthy 100 bhp, plus a new all-synchromesh gearbox, wider front and rear track for improved handling and rack-and-pinion steering. Triumphs always felt a little more upmarket than their rivals and the TR4 was no exception, with nice touches like wind-up windows, the option of a versatile hard-top roof with removable panel (called the 'Surrey' top) and more creature comforts for the occupants. Although an expensive option when new, the 'Surrey' top was an ingenious and versatile way of transforming the TR4 from an open sports car into an early type of targa (with soft-top for occasional showers) or, with the metal roof panel in place, a snug and waterproof coupe. Stylish, sporting and individualistic, the TR4 Triumph is a great alternative to the much more common MGBs and is the perfect classic British sports car for a fun weekend drive.