Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK

Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK – There are exactly 22 right hand drive TR8 cars designated “Right hand drive TR8 Home Market” along with 3 x RHD TR8 Exp cars. That’s it; less a tiny handful (5 provable) of factory converted USA spec left hand drive to right hand drive TR8’s most of which were EFi cars. They are all “Pre-Production” as no RHD TR8 was ever built as a Production car, as a result all 22 have oddities of one sort or another, given they were never intended for Joe Public use. They would had Triumph not been in such a financial mess, ordinarily have all been destroyed as is the normal practice for pre production cars. The information here comes from either surviving RHD TR8’s, factory issued and certified chassis numbers, and or people who were there at the time, such as Garry Owen who headed up the RHD TR8 project at Canley and Solihull, so its credibility for factual information is very high even after 40 plus years.

Canley/Solihull 1980/1 RHD TR8’s

From here on in all TR7’s and TR8’s share the same series of numbers, individual letters are now the only way to differentiate between a TR7 or TR8 – Different world market cars – Manual or Automatic – FHC or DHC.

RED designates UK TR8 chassis identifier and RHD. Chassis number doesn’t lie, owners may, beware!

Chassis
1: Make of car T = Triumph
2: Model range: P = TR7/8
3. Specification: A = UK or Europe
K = Australia
V = U.S.A., Federal (49 states)
Z = U.S.A., California
L = Canada
J = Japan
4. Type of body: E = Coupe
D = Convertible
5. Type of engine: J = 2 litre (TR7)
V = 3.5 litre V8 (TR8)
6. Steering, Gear box: 3 = Right hand drive. Automatic
4 = LHD, Automatic
7 = Right hand drive, Manual
8 = LHD, Manual
7. Model year change: A = 1980 Model Year
8. Assembly plant: T = Canley A = Solihull
9. Number 6 digits

All of the 22 Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK cars carry British Heritage certificates authenticating them as genuine factory approved “HOME MARKET” RHD TR8’s. They also carry full and complete UK RHD chassis numbers.

PLEASE NOTE: the 2nd batch of 9 for Sales and Marketing all have incorrect chassis numbers in that the V and A having been transposed. The build record for each car also shows the same incorrect chassis number. Should be TRADV7AA. Some build records have been altered to be the correct version but most have not. Nearly all of these cars have technically the wrong chassis number on their chassis plates as well! Some mistake this change for a TR7 Chassis number, but they are incorrect as it would be a J not a V if that were the case.

Many fake cars carry incomplete chassis numbers or TR7 chassis numbers. There is ONLY ONE instance aside from the anomaly above where a genuine RHD TR8 has been accidently given a TR7 chassis number and that is covered in detail below, There are no others so no matter how good the story it isn’t!

How many has been a question for many years and there are three common answers.

14 Is the 14 unregistered (new) RHD TR8’s sold at Measham which is where that figure comes from. The other 8 were either already registered (3) as in NWK988W, MHP404V, RDU35W and also in the auction, so total RHD TR8’s in the auction was actually 17, or unregistered (5) and sold privately by BL to preferred dealers.

18 Comes from the batch of 9 press cars built late 1980 and the batch of 9 sales and marketing cars built March 1981. Missing are the two methods build cars and the two pre-production quality and development RHD TR8’s.

22 Is the correct number for Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK specification cars.

1 x Pre-Production Quality Build RHD TR8 (MHP404V) (80 model year, round door locks and twist boot lock, cable reset dash’s).

1 x Pre-Production Manual Development RHD TR8 (NWK988W) (81 model year, square door locks and push boot lock, cable reset dash’s).

1 x Methods build Manual RHD TR8 (D79OGJ) (late 81/82 model year, square door locks and push boot lock, push button dash’s).

1 x Methods build Automatic RHD TR8 (late 81/82 model year, square door locks and push boot lock, push button dash’s).

9 x Press RHD Pilot Production TR8’s (81 model year, square door locks and push boot lock, cable reset dash’s).

9 x Sales and Marketing RHD Pilot Production TR8’s (late 81/82 model year, square door locks and push boot lock, push button dash’s).

Type Approval for RHD TR8 HOME MARKET UK

Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK RHD TYPE APPROVAL TR8 Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK

INITIAL PRE PRODUCTION Canley built RHD TR8 HOME MARKET (1980)

PRE PRODUCTION – “Preliminary work on or trial production, industrial prototype, etc.”. Collins English Dictionary.

The first two initial RHD “home market” TR8’s one Silver, and the other Green, were built from a RHD shell, bespoke RHD UK TR8 parts and some bits modified for the UK from US TR8 market parts. A few USA TR8 market parts used, such as the impact sensor, are actually fitted to ALL 22 RHD UK TR8’s. Because of the way they were originally devised/built the first two have the standard TR8 10E engine as there were no 20E engines at that time. Standard TR8 chassis plates fitted in the UK position on the suspension turret as no UK ones were available at that time. On the Silver one the plate is bent over the turret angle line, and on the second Green one it’s fitted in line with it at an angle. The silver one ONLY has a BBP series body number as do the three RHD TR8 EXP cars (built at a similar time). BBP body number is used to designate a RHD shell, BAP is a LHD shell. The Green one only, has a body number CHP300xxx series (designated RHD UK TR8 shell) which is the same as for all the next 20 RHD TR8’s, which all have CHP 300xxx series body numbers less for one small exception of a single letter mis-stamp on one car.

CHP 300005 (Earliest known number)

CHP 300005 (Earliest known number)

There is some confusion over one of the methods build cars with CJPxxx but I believe it was intended CHP300xxx series regardless (if you ignore the letter that is wrong, the number is correct and in sequence) and that was just human error as was the TR7 chassis number on the other one (more on that later).

The first  two Right hand drive TR8 Home Market UK car’s (Silver and Green – MHP404V and NWK988W) were used on the Club Triumph “Round Britain Rally” see email excerpt below from one of the team on this venture.

“At the time we did it, there was no decision to not launch the car in the UK it was still an active project. The tour was through the triumph club in London and it was setting off on a Friday night up to John a groats then lands end and back to London on the Sunday night. We did it with the intension of getting some publicity and for club members to see the cars. Nothing serious. (Garry Owen)”

 

1 – TPADV7AT 212246 ARGENT SILVER – MHP404V – Engine 10E00609 – MAN – Body number BBP202271 (1980 SPEC – Grey Stripe Velour Trim – ala Spider special edition) Designated Quality Build TR8.

An earlier common assumption because a standard federal TR8 engine (all that was available at the time) was used as a base/starting point, was that the car had low compression 8:13 pistons, however having been for a ride in the car July 2023, I can attest its performance is far more in line with 9:35:compression pistons. Which is exactly what you would expect when producing a UK spec TR8.

The ONLY BBP body number all the rest have CHP300xxx series

 

 

This car is now in Derbyshire

 

2 – TPADV7AT 214004 POSEIDON GREEN – NWK988W – Engine 10E00655 – MAN – Body number CHP300005

(First RHD 8 with this body number series, 9:35:1 engine initially and later the only 9:75:1 compression engine) (80/81 SPEC – Tan Velour Trim) Designated Development Man TR8 – Modified and further developed by Tony Ponds’ 1980 works TR7V8 rally team (Cliff Humphreys – engine modifications and Richard Hurdwell – suspension modifications) at BL MOTORSPORT ABINGDON to what could have been 1982 RHD TR8 spec.

After nearly 40 years in a private collection on the Isle of Man where no one got to see the car, it finally surfaced in a farm auction at a small place in Northern Ireland before being bought and returned to the mainland. The car is now in North Yorkshire.

Full story of this car is HERE

RHD Triumph TR8 NWK988W

July 2022 a rolling restoration was completed back to full health after 40 PLUS years of not doing much at all. Age, sitting in a collection and bad to no maintenance, unhelpful modifications etc, have taken their toll on the car but it’s now back to fully running again and as close to how it was when it left the factory as possible.

Time lapse of NWK988W at the NEC Classic Car Show, November 11-13th 2022 on the TR Register stand.

This TR8 is unique in that it was the most heavily modified TR8 ever built by the factory and was clocked at 150mph on a test run in early 1981. NWK was used as the UK RHD TR8 Development car to present alternative engine and chassis specifications for the future UK and European Sports Car Market. That work was done by Tony Ponds 1980 TR7V8 works team, Cliff Humphreys for the engine modifications and Richard Hurdwell for the suspension down at BL Motor Sport Abingdon. The final version of this car was pretty much a hybrid road/rally car with an ex-engineering consultant at BL recently saying if they had known what was going on, it would have never been built! Probably why it was moved down to Abingdon and BL engineering were kept out of it so are not copied on the memo. Actual Memo from BL MOTORSPORT at Abingdon detail the first round of modifications. There were later modifications made in 1981 but they aren’t documented.

This car in its life had in effect two engine builds the FIRST being to what would later become the 20E engine and the SECOND to what was essentially a Vitesse engine with WL9 cam which would have been the engine of the PRODUCTION  RHD TR8’s had they launched with what ever engine number that would have been (30E?). Performance run below in September 2023 gives 270bhp plus @ 5.8k at the wheels as we clocked the road to its limit. Estimate would have been around that when the factory had the car, so around 70 bhp less than the works cars but considerably more by some margin, than the standard road going RHD TR8. John Davenport remembers the car at Abingdon and recently classed the car as a hybrid to show what could be done.

This car is now in North Yorkshire

Methods Build Department PILOT PRODUCTION RHD TR8 home market 1980

PILOT PRODUCTION – “a manufacturing or engineering production line set up during development, to test new methods, processes, and systems”. Collins English Dictionary.

Only 2 x RHD home market TR8’s were built by the methods department off track in 1980 1 x Auto and 1 x Man.

1 – TPADV7AA 402289 PENDELICAN WHITE – D70 OGJ – Engine 20E00001 – MAN – Body number CHP300009

NO BUILD SHEET – This was the first of 2 pilot production RHD TR8’s and was assembled off track by Methods Build Department. There appear to have been in my opinion a few human error mistakes with these two cars. For this one the Body number is given as CJP300009 then corrected to CJF300009 on the heritage certificate. All RHD TR8’s have a body number in the series CHP300XXX so I believe as it fits the right sequence, the body number for this car, should actually be CHP300009 which fits in with the sister AUTO car below with CHP300010.

This RHD TR8 now resides in a private collection in the USA.

 

2 – TPADV3AA 402290 PENDELICAN WHITE – CFM 452W – Engine 21E00001 – AUTO – Body number CHP300010

NO BUILD SHEET – This was the second of 2 pilot method build RHD TR8’s and was assembled off track by Methods Build Department. There appear to have been in my opinion a few human error mistakes with these two cars. For this one the chassis number should be TPADV3AA402290 where as on the car itself it shows TPADJ7AA402290. So not only does it show on the chassis number as a TR7 but a manual one as well, where as the actual car is a TR8 and automatic! It was when this car first appeared again, thought a TR7 was taken from the line and converted but as this car has body number CHP300010 which is the CHP300 series ONLY used on RHD TR8’s I’m 99.9% certain that did not happen and that this car was not taken from the line as a TR7 but was actually built individually the same as any of the other RHD TR8’s. Short version no TR7 ever had a RHD TR8 body number so if it was a car taken from the line the body number would be a TR7 one and it isn’t. It also has the correct auto TR8 engine number of 21E. Lastly it is in exact chassis number sequence with the manual car in being 402289 and the manual 402290. This is the ONLY TR7 chassis number on a TR8 so don’t be fooled by claims for others, this is the ONLY ONE! How do we know there aren’t others? Because Garry Owen the former Triumph Manager in charge of the RHD TR8 project stated on numerous occasions the factory ONLY BUILT 22!

Sold at Auction September 2021 – 28K

Fully striped to a shell ground up restoration now under way May 2022

After being hidden away in a leaking lockup in London for 40 years unregistered, the car has now undergone a full back to bare shell nut and bolt restoration as well as being registered for the road. This car is now in Kent.

 

 RHD TR8 x 9 home market PILOT PRODUCTION for PRESS/LAUNCH 1980/81 Canley/Solihull TR8’s built on track – build cards attached.

PILOT PRODUCTION – “a manufacturing or engineering production line set up during development, to test new methods, processes, and systems”. Collins English Dictionary.

A further 18 RHD home market Pilot Production (No actual full Production RHD TR8’s were ever built!) TR8’s were built at Canley/Solihull with the first batch of 9 being put through the manufacturing process late 1980, however they weren’t released from manufacturing until after the Christmas holidays, so the build records show the final build date as being Jan 5th despite actually being built November to December 1980 and almost certainly at Canley not Solihull as the chassis plates indicate. There was a plan to produce full production RHD TR8’s with some of the modifications developed on NWK988W after a meeting in January 1981 with BL Motorsport Abingdon demonstrating the improvements that had been made on that car, would cost no more to produce. Initially it had been intended to add those improvements to the second batch of 9 hence their later build dates, but no firm decision was made in time, so they were built identical to the two methods build TR8’s that being the latest approved spec with the later push button dash. The first batch of 9 were built to an identical interior spec to NWK988W the pre-production Green TR8 which was 1980 style dash but 1981 style seats and door trim etc. Had the full production RHD 8’s been produced, they would have been a closer spec still to the final 1981 engine and suspension development specification of NWK988W than the Pilot Production cars actually produced were. NWK988W the pre-production Green TR8 when development (some further development on the car continued after that date as the car was Richard Hurdwells company car until it went to Measham at the end of the year) officially finished May 1981 had a 0 – 60 of around 5.6 seconds and a top speed of 150 mph with superb running on rails handing to match. Very sadly it was the only one ever built to the final RHD TR8 specification, but what a great note to end on!

1st batch of 9 Despatched Jan 5th, 1981, to Press Fleet Canley.

1 – TPADV7AA 402960 PENDELICAN WHITE – RDU35W – Engine 20E00004 – Body number CHP300437

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

2 – TPADV7AA 403014 PENDELICAN WHITE – PVC574W – Engine 20E00008 – Body number CHP300429

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

3 – TPADV7AA 403024 PENDELICAN WHITE – 2498TR – Engine 20E00009 – Body number? The build card for this car unusually states  AXLE WHITE & STRUT RED. It has no body number either listed.

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

4 – TPADV7AA 403034 BORDEAUX RED – URU287X – TRA8OK – ZV-11581 – Engine 20E00005 – Body number CHP300424 (This car no longer has its original engine and has been substantially modified – be concerned if you see this engine number on another car)

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

5 – TPADV7AA 403044 BORDEAUX RED – WPU281W (One of the two cars used by BSM) – Engine 20E00003 – Body number CHP300505

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

6 – TPADV7AA 403054 BORDEAUX RED (One of the two cars used by BSM) – (Destroyed by BSM) Engine 20E00002 – Body number CHP300596

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

7 – TPADV7AA 403062 PENDELICAN WHITE – WEL480X – Engine 20E00006 – Body number CHP300527

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

8 – TPADV7AA 403072 PERSIAN AQUA – A8TRR – Engine 20E00007 – Body number CHP300493

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

9 – TPADV7AA 403082 PERSIAN AQUA – A125GPG – Engine 20E00010 – Body number CHP300492

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

 

 RHD TR8 x 9 home market PILOT PRODUCTION for Sales and Marketing Longbridge 1981 Solihull TR8’s built on track – build cards attached.

PILOT PRODUCTION – “a manufacturing or engineering production line set up during development, to test new methods, processes, and systems”. Collins English Dictionary.

The second batch of 9 were built January to February 1981 and released March 1981 just before the axe fell on production of the TR8 on May 14th, 1981.

This batch all have incorrect chassis numbers with the V and A having been transposed. The build record above for each also shows the same incorrect chassis number. Should be TPADV7AA. Some records have been altered to be the correct version but most have not. All of these cars have technically the wrong chassis number on their chassis plates as well! Another way to tell RHD TR8’s from the second batch! You will also notice some of the build cards have had the number changed to the correct order of the A and V, see the build card below. All the last nine cars have that issue and it was originally on the build cards until someone started to hand correct them. That batch and the auto methods build car all have incorrect chassis numbers, but in the interests of showing what they were meant to be, and for them to square correctly with the chassis number layout I have chosen to show them here as they should be.

1- TPADV7AA 403592 ARAN BEIGE – 56GJH – Engine 20E00021 – Body number CHP300525

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

2 – TPADV7AA 403731 PHARAOH GOLD – MFS302X – Engine 20E00016 – Body number CHP300708

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

3 – TPADV7AA 403736 PHARAOH GOLD – UNREGISTERED – FOR SALE 52.5K – Engine 20E00013 – Body number CHP300704

 

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

Interestingly the V and A have been transposed. The build record above also shows the same incorrect chassis number. Should be TRADV7AA

4- TPADV7AA 403741 PHARAOH GOLD – OOV315X – Engine 20E00025 – Body number CHP300710

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

5 – TPADV7AA 403746 TRITON GREENEngine 20E00024 – Body number CHP300713 – Believed now painted Black?

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

6- TPADV7AA 403751 TRITON GREEN – WNW2X – Engine 20E00023 – Body number CHP300711

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

7 – TPADV7AA 403761 CAVALRY BLUE – D63OGJ – Engine 20E00022 – Body number CHP300727

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

Interestingly the V and A have been transposed. The build record above also shows the same incorrect chassis number. Should be TRADV7AA

8 – TPADV7AA 403764 ARGENT SILVER – 8202TR – Engine 20E00015 – Body number CHP300498

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

9- TPADV7AA 403767 PERSIAN AQUA – OON223X – Engine 20E00029 Body number CHP300556

Photo of build record from British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Do not copy or replicate

RHD TR8 3 X EXP BUILT

EXP TR8 – X921 CARNELIAN RED – KHP573V RHD – Temperature testing

EXP TR8 – X923 PLATINUM SILVER – KHP574V – RHD – Mira test car flying quarter mile 130.43 mph – Sold at Heritage Auction 3/6/2003 for £9600.

EXP TR8 – X925 SILVER LEAF – PVC568X – RHD – Trim/Styling evaluation car for the future may have been the 82 look

 

FACTORY USA SPEC CARS CONVERTED IN THE FACTORY TO RHD

Including these cars takes the total FACTORY built approved RHD TR8’s to around the 30+/- mark. Unfortunately defining what is a genuine factory built RHD car when taking factory converted LHD TR8’s to RHD into account becomes a lot more difficult, so for this definition we have chosen to go with cars that have been photographed by the factory as RHD (factory photos are at Gaydon) and or sold at the Measham auction as a RHD TR8. That being the only way to be truly certain the factory converted them to RHD in house, AND NOT SOMEONE ELSE LATER!

1 – EXP X919 PENDELICAN WHITE – JVC824V – Engine 13E00114 (EFi) – MAN – Body number BAP100189 (1980/81) SPEC – Blue check Trim) EXP TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons

2 – TPZDV8AT 203169 PENDELICAN WHITE – LVC358V – Engine 14E00002 (EFi) – MAN – Body number BAP207201 (1980/81) SPEC – Blue check Trim Designated Development TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons

3 – TPZDV8AT 201675 PLATINUM SILVER – KHP533V – Engine 15E00002 – AUTO – Body number BAP207721 (1980 )SPEC – Blue Velour Trim) Designated Development Auto TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons

Sold at Auction September 2022 – close to 25K

4 – TPVDV8AT 212236 PENDELICAN WHITE – MVC365V – Engine 14E0000? (EFi)  – MAN – Body number BAP? (1980/81) SPEC – Tan check Trim Designated Development TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons

5 – TPVDV8AT210006 PLATINUM SILVER – TVC59W – Engine 12E0000? – MAN – Body number BAP213577 (1980) SPEC – Tan check Trim) Designated Development TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons

 

British Car Auctions at Measham

More than 22 registered and 14 un-registered cars were sold by BL at Measham in the period August – September 1981. It is known that the RHD TR8’s cars above were nearly all included and sold in the auctions. On the whole if the car was sold at Measham it was genuine, if not less for a few exceptions (X923 – Mira test car that was retained) it isn’t. The auction was a dealer only one because some of the cars were sold as new unregistered and BL wanted them to have a factory warranty, hence they needed to be sold by official dealers for that to happen.

British Car Auctions at Measham Video

RHD TR8 214004 POSEIDON GREEN – NWK988W – appears in this video at about 0.26

More Information is HERE

FACTORY USA SPEC CARS THAT “MAY” OR “MAY NOT” HAVE BEEN CONVERTED IN THE FACTORY TO RHD?

These cars MAY or MAY NOT have been converted by the factory. It is likely they were converted later after they were initially sold, but we put them here because they are known development TR8’s and it is possible.

1 – TPzDV8AT201479 POSEIDON GREEN – KDU315V – Engine 14E00009 – MAN – Body number BAP297586 (1980) SPEC – Tan check Trim) Designated TEST TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons

2 – TCT20017UCF PLATINUM SILVER – KHP565V – Engine 13E00184 – MAN – Body number BAP204984 (1980) SPEC – Tan check Trim) Designated TEST – Fitted with UK spec engine TR8. USA spec 8:13 /9:35 pistons?

3 – ACT00019 CAVALRY BLUE – YRW573E – Engine 3480 – MAN – Body number 00001GT  An ACT car, originally a FHC modified in the factory to develop the Convertible configuration. It was saved from being “crushed” by a BL engineer and subsequently fitted with TR8 components.

4 – TPVDV4AT 207723 CASHMERE GOLD (Heritage say RUSSET BROWN) – LVC365V – Engine 13E00311 – AUTO – Body number (Heritage say 212740 LHD – On car now BBP203123 RHD) (1980) SPEC – Tan check Trim Designated Development Auto TR8. USA spec 8:13 pistons. Believed re-shelled to RHD by whom not known currently.

FACTORY USA SPEC TR8’s THAT HAVE BEEN CONVERTED OUTSIDE THE FACTORY TO RHD

These cars have been converted to RHD by their owners after they left the factory. Most of these cars are well known and have been the subjects of excellent Left to RHD conversions, such that for many, you cant tell they were ever LHD.

1 – SATTV4584BA 208267 BORDEAUX RED – DWR568W – Engine 14E00545 – MAN – Body number? (1981) SPEC – Tan Velour Trim) Very nicely Converted RHD by S&S Preparations. USA spec Efi 8:13 pistons

2 – TPVDV8AT208267 PERSIAN AQUA – MBC324V – Engine 12E00627 – MAN – Body number BAP210433 (1980) SPEC – Tan check Trim) Converted RHD by TR GB. USA spec 8:13 pistons

3 – TCN160128UCF INCA YELLOW – PVL678V – Engine 12E00690 – MAN – Body number? SPEC – Green check Trim) Converted RHD by owner. USA spec 8:13 pistons

TR7/NEW BUILD TO TR8. WELL BUILT NON ORIGINAL FACTORY TR8’s USING 95/100% FACTORY ORIGINAL PARTS.

These cars have been built to full factory TR8 spec but after production ended and by individuals so are not genuine RHD TR8’s but in every other respect are. Either from a donor TR7 or from a pile of new parts and brand new shell. Their builders/owners have always been genuine and above board about what they are. These cars represent the next best to an original factory RHD with some claiming they were much better built.

1 – TCG102447 CARMINE RED – FTV66V – Engine10A39511 – MAN – Body number N/A – (NEW SHELL BUILD) Built by Paul Towle to 100% RHD TR8 SPEC (Owned by Chris Turner currently)

2 – TPZDJ8AT207163 CARMINE RED – LVC355V – Engine 12E00208 – MAN – Body number ? Built by Tony Butler to 100% RHD TR8 SPEC (Owned by Fin  Purcell currently)

3 -SATTPADJ7AA407041 BLUE METALIC – Original YKR284X now changed to ATR835L – Engine? – MAN – Body number ? Built by Brian Harber to 100% RHD TR8 SPEC (Owned by Steve Wilcox currently)

RHD TR8’s that are not FACTORY RHD TR8’s

There isn’t a lot of difference IF ANY between these and the ones above to be fair. Only the supposed histories around them and owners versions of what they are. At the end of production more parts were leaving the factory than were actually going on cars! These cars are frequently being passed off as genuine RHD TR8’s/Development/Test cars. In actual fact they were mostly built from shells (often from for example, TR7’s with O series engines that have been removed so are claimed as development cars. But not TR8 development, and a collection of often random year parts acquired towards and after the end of production. While interesting from an historical point of view they are not genuine factory RHD cars. They generally carry TR7 chassis numbers or in the case of two we are aware of, a made up chassis number but registered as a TR7 with DVLA. The value of these would be much lower than any of the genuine RHD TR8’s and you should very much consider buyer beware no matter what letters and claims from previous owners may say or hint at. Check with the British Motor Museum at Gaydon and or talk to us, if it isn’t there, doesn’t have a heritage certificate or a full and complete chassis number that actually says “TR8” or we don’t know, usually best to walk away! But genuine RHD TR8’s command very high prices (last one sold for 47k and the one before that 45k) so at the right price they are an attractive and viable alternative to getting your hands on a RHD TR8 in all but factory name.

 

RHD TR8 “NOT FACTORY” Let’s look at the original eBay claim for this car PVP299Y

 

“This is a factory built RHD TR8 from 1980”

NOT TRUE – All of the factory built RHD TR8’s are known and were confirmed recently to me by Gary Owen the Triumph factory manager responsible for them. This is NOT ONE OF THEM. They are all listed at the top of this page.

“I was told it was sold off by the factory, probably at the Measham sale after the cancellation of production by BL, and finally registered as a new vehicle in 1982.”

NOT TRUE – All of the Persian Aqua cars at Measham are accounted for. This is NOT ONE OF THEM.

“It is registered as a TR7 V8, as were all the pre-production press cars, as at that time, DVLA did not have the designation of ‘TR8’ on their system, as it had only ever been an export model up to that point”

NOT TRUE – The early Factory Home market RHD TR8’s in fact have no model designation on the DVLA log book, just Triumph only. That only applies to the first two MHP404V and NWK988W and possibly one white TR8 TBC as the rest were all sold UNREGISTERED at Measham. What they may have now is whatever the new owners put down when they registered them for the first time. So nothing to do with the factory at all.

Now let’s look at other claims made by the seller to its authenticity

“The RHD Alford and Adler steering rack was a very rare item and therefore proves its genuine”

NOT entirely TRUE – At the end of production and for quite a few years after, they were not too difficult to get hold of, and quite a few ended up on conversions and the like.

“It is indistinguishable from the 18 Pre-Production cars”

Oddities:

It has a black dash

The ignition system is on the left as per earlier cars.

The boot is an earlier model

The trim cards for the doors are very late 82 model velour with horizontal trim

Door catches are earlier

Now let’s look at the strange “incomplete” chassis number. To be factory correct it should have 14 digits it only has 11!

TRADJTAA215

NOTE the R substitute for where there would normally be the P which is the designated model range TR7/8

For cars built from shells it is not permissible to describe it as a model range without having to pay tax duty so the “INVENTED” chassis number has an R in its place. The chassis number on the ebay advert shows the normal P, but the logbook for the car does not suggesting the seller was well aware of what that meant.

My guess is that while the 215 fits in with ranges of chassis numbers the number creator actually was designating 215 cu engine. This is born out by a second car 99.9% built by the same person simply because it follows EXACTLY the same format and it too has a connection to a Lynx.

PVP299Y Persian Aqua TRADJ7TAA215 

Engine no 10E00013

TR7 V8 DHC TAXED  f/r August 1982

TOH963Y Oporto Red TRADJ7AA3528 

Engine no EXP210

TR8 DHC SORN  f/r  May 1983

Note on the second car the engine cc has been used 3528.

 

RHD TR8 “NOT FACTORY” Let’s look at the claim for this car KHP542V (Car appears blue in video but is actually Poseidon Green)

 

Historic’s have just sold this for £24,500 (with fees 27.5k). Brian Ridley-Jones (TR8 Registrar for the TRDC) contacted them to say that it was NOT a right hand drive factory car, but they appear to have ignored that information. Interesting that for a Ford Escort they were prepared to have a comment from the AVO registrar that a car (unsold) was very good, but not 100% correct in terms of trim. This is a factory development car – but had an O series engine with left hand drive. It was scrapped but like some other cars “magically” appeared with a 3.5 engine sometime later. However, the factory did not build the car as is, which still has a TR7 VIN. The V8 is from a Rover SD1 and not a TR8 variant. This car has an interest and historical value for sure but it is NOT AN OFFICIAL FACTORY RHD TR8.

From here on is the beginning of TR7V8 conversions done by various companies seeking to fill the void left by so few RHD TR8’s in the UK, Del Lines cars (mostly complete cars with a DL chassis number), S&S Preparations, to mention two of the better ones, and of course Grinnall cars, but they were mostly quite a step away from the standard, in that in the main the body was very different with no real attempt to emulate the TR8.

RHD PRICING – The subject no one wants to hang their hat on! (Update July 2022)

UK HOME MARKET SPEC TR8’s (RHD) are very few (22/25) with only the odd one ever coming up for sale. So I would expect them to have a premium of 15-20K over a similar condition LHD TR8. Expect a very good condition original untouched and unregistered low mileage one to be around £50k given the rarity! The one below originally had a 60k asking price which has more recently been reduced on eBay to £52.5K. This particular car was sold at auction a few years ago for 35K (31.5k including auction fees), has been repainted – not a great job as the suspension nuts have been painted over as well which quite frankly is sloppy and lazy – as well as having had a poor conversion to external fuel pump to the extent the air plenum can no longer be fitted. So has to some extent now lost some of its originality. Still a very nice car though! This current price may still be a tad optimistic but if the owner hangs on to it for a few more years they may well stand a better chance. We understand this TR8 recently (2024) sold for very close to it’s asking price of around 48k.

POOR CONDITION RHD TR8 = £25K – 28k – To this standard as in the video BELOW

FAIR/GOOD CONDITION (CLUB CAR) RHD TR8 = £30 – 35K

NEW PAINT CLEANED UP NICELY / CONCOURS FOR A LOCAL CAR SHOW = £35 – 40k

RESTORED/ORIGINAL TO A GOOD STANDARD TR8 = £40 – 48K

ORIGINAL/SHOW ROOM condition or BETTER THAN NEW EVERY NUT AND BOLT TR8 = £45 – 55K – To this standard as in the video BELOW

The above are guide prices only because at the end of the day if the car is sold with hardly anyone knowing its there it will obviously go for less than a well publicised sale! In the past year I have seen examples of both with one a bargain and the other at the top end of its value. If you want one, consider setting up a Google alert for TR8 and you will get to hear about many cars you otherwise wouldn’t know are for sale!

Individual Rarity increases the value by perhaps another 5K or so – there is only one RHD automatic, there is only one car modified by BL MOTORPOSRT Abingdon and that may give that car added value for people with a Motorsport connection etc. There are quite a few with low mileage which the owners try to keep that way by trailering the cars every where. Complete fully documented stories will always add extra value as well.

BEWARE – BECAUSE RHD CARS ATTRACT A PREMIUM EXPECT THERE TO BE RINGERS!

We believe if everyone knows who owns what and what might be used as a ringer, then the chances of someone cloning one becomes considerably less likely as its then very easy for a prospective buyer to check and verify a car they are looking at buying, hence why this information is here in the OPEN and not hidden away. There is currently one known 100% destroyed car and another two that were very likely crash tested and destroyed. They are Triton Green – Bordeaux Red – White. Check the details out above and make sure the engine and body numbers all stack up. One missing walk away!  There is one car now in Ireland (Bordeaux Red) and one in the USA (White). If in doubt drop us a line and we’ll gladly help. At the end of the day we are only human so errors are made, however in the main, we believe this page to be 99.9% correct,, but it you believe we have something wrong, please do let us know as every little extra bit of information helps.