1949 Triumph Roadster 2000
From a deceased estate; less than 1,000 miles since total nut-and-bolt restoration to concours-winning standard; overdrive gearbox; outstanding condition throughout
As the Heritage Certificate confirms, this Triumph Roadster 2000 was built in June 1949 and was originally finished in green with a green interior and a green hood. The V5C records three former keepers, entertaining correspondence on file showing that it was acquired by the Williamson family of Lancashire in 1957 who had many adventures in the car up until the end of the 1960s when it was put into storage following a house move. Here it was to remain for the next 40 years until our vendor stumbled across it in November 2010.
By this time the car was in a pretty dilapidated state but our vendor liked a challenge – as befits a retired engineer and master craftsman who had already restored another Triumph Roadster and a Healey 3000 to concours-winning condition and who also restored clocks, furniture, guns and historic buildings for fun – so he set about the new project with gusto. Seven years later and bingo, he’d done it again, producing a car so spectacular that it came runner-up in the Triumph Roadster Club Concours in 2018 and won outright in 2019. It also won the 2018 Dave Elmer Award reserved for particularly heroic restorations that put another Roadster back on the road.
The extent of the work carried out is far too detailed to list in full here but is amply documented in a vast number of invoices, photos and correspondence on file. Naturally the engine was completely rebuilt and converted to unleaded fuel, while the gearbox gained overdrive, a most desirable modification which makes the car far more relaxing to drive at speed. A top quality repaint in BMW Mini Midnight Grey complements the red leather interior perfectly. It is no exaggeration to say that the car is now probably better than new and it has covered fewer than 1,000 miles since the restoration was completed.
Driven some 25 miles to the sale, this gorgeous Roadster is on offer here from a deceased estate and is no doubt capable of scooping many more trophies should the new owner feel so inclined.
The first post-war car from Triumph Motor Company, the Roadster was produced from 1946 to 1949. Initially equipped with a 65bhp Standard 1800cc engine, it was superseded by a 68bhp 2-litre version in 1948.
Styled by Frank Callaby and Arthur Ballard, with mechanical design by Ray Turner, the Roadster was intended as a rival to Jaguar, whose cars had also used Standard engines in the pre-war period. Post-war steel shortages meant that the swooping bodywork was built from aluminium using rubber press tools that had been used by Standard to make parts for the Mosquito fighter bomber during the war. A riot of generous curves, the styling was certainly distinctive, although "more toadster than roadster" was how one critic unkindly described it.
The chassis was hand-welded from steel tube and featured transverse leaf sprung independent suspension at the front and a live axle with half elliptic springs at the rear. The rear track was considerably narrower than the front. Brakes were hydraulic and drive was via a four-speed column-change gearbox with synchromesh on the top three ratios. On the 2-litre model this was replaced with an all-synchro three-speed ‘box.
The front bench seat could accommodate three at a squeeze and additional room for two was provided by a dickey seat in the rear with its own folding windscreen and a stepped rear bumper to aid entry and exit. Tested by Autocar in 1948, The 2-litre got to 60mph in 27.9 seconds and could hit 77mph. A Triumph Roadster was famously driven by Bergerac in the BBC crime drama of the same name, starring John Nettles. Just 4,501 examples were made of which less than half had the 2-litre engine, making these elegant roadsters much sought-after today.
For more information contact James on 07970 309907 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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