Today’s car is a 1962 Triumph Italia 2000 Coupé Vignale owned by Kurt Oblinger. I photographed this car on its first outing where it took first place in the British Sports Cars 1946 to 1975 class at the San Marino Motor Classic, that is held at Lacy Park, located in San Marino, CA. This is a limited production car that was designed by Giovanni Michelotti, the body was built by Carrozzeria Vignale and at the request of the Triumph importer for Italy, Dr. Salvatore Ruffino. The Italia 2000 sits on a Standard – Triumph TR3 chassis that were shipped to Vignale in Turin where the cars were individually bodied in steel. Quoting from the brochure “Italian bodywork at its best, British tradition in sports car engineering at its finest.”
The car is finished in “Rosso Garofano” (Red Carnation) with a Parchment leather interior and Saffron carpets. It is powered by a 100 hp, 1991 cc, 4 cylinder OHV engine, with a pair of single bbl Skinners Union (SU) HU6 carburetors and mated to a non synchro 1st gear 4-speed standard transmission with overdrive and 4.10:1 rear axle gear ratio. Slowing this beauty down are Girling disc brakes up front and drums in the rear. It has independent front suspension using double wishbones, with coil springs and telescopic dampeners. The rear suspension has live rear axle, semi-elliptical leaf springs and piston type dampeners.
The production years were 1959 – 1962 with a total 0f 330 units were made 2 of which were prototypes and 328 production cars with 126 known to survive and only 23 know to be in the U.S. The MSRP in the U.S. was $5,000.00 almost double the $2,675 price of a TR3. It has a published top speed of 118 mph with overdrive and a 0-60 mph time of 12.0 seconds.
The car was restored by British Sports Cars in San Luis Obispo. This rare Vagnale, was built close to the end of production carrying Vignale body number 312. This beautiful example of an 7 year restoration that did not miss any details, very well done Kurt. What a great car to take to British car shows, Cars & Coffee events, or just going to brunch in style. Thank you for riding along. Frank