1980 Triumph TR7 Spider
- Condition: Used
- Make: Triumph
- Model: Other
- Trim: Spider
- Year: 1980
- Mileage: 63,220
- VIN: TPVDJ8AA400777
- Color: Black
- Engine size: 2.0
- Drive type: RWD
- Vehicle Title: Clear Want to buy? Contact seller!
1980 Triumph Other
Up for auction is my 1980 Triumph TR7 Spider. There were 1,070 carbureted Spiders manufactured - all with VIN beginning with TPVDJ8AA. For some background info there is an excellent article in the Triumph Wedge Owners Association entitled “Counting TR7 Spiders: A Day at the Gaydon Archive”. According to the author, all VIN’s between VIN 400301 - 401918 were Spider special editions (mixed between carb models and fuel injected models). Consequently, the VIN of this TR7 (TPVDJ8AA400777) proves it to be a real, carbureted TR7 Spider.
This TR7 currently has all the specialty items specific to the Spider except for the reflective red decals, the grey striped seat covers and the factory radio. The TR8 wheels, TR8 steering wheel, black door cards, grey painted dash, “pewter” grey shag carpeting, black paint code (TPA sticker still present on the shock tower) and factory air conditioning are all present. Fog lights and a luggage rack were the only options available for order but this car was not ordered with either of these.
This particular TR7 is in decent shape having had some recent work. The car was undercoated when new so it doesn’t suffer from the typical rust often seen in these cars. The typical problem areas (rear trailing arm attachment points, firewall, front subframe, floorpans, etc.) are all solid. I inspected the car closely and did find a rusted battery tray, a small hole in the spare tire well, another small hole in the driver side door jam and another small rust area on the lower right rear quarter panel. There is evidence of other rust repairs but they are minor in nature. Generally speaking, this car has survived the ravages of rust fairly well. The body was painted a few years ago at a Maaco shop. As you would expect, the paint job was not an exceptional job. Apparently, there was very little attempt to correct small dents/dings/chips prior to applying the paint. Consequently, although the paint seems shiny I believe the body should be stripped and repainted after basic body repairs are made. There is some crazing, checking and orange peel on some surfaces. Color sanding and machine polishing would only make a slight improvement to this paint job (my opinion).
The engine seems to run fairly well. It recently received a new water pump, the head was removed and machined and received a new gasket and valve job (a few hundred miles ago). Additionally, the front coil springs were replaced as well as the clutch master cylinder, throttle cable, shifter bushings and rear brake shoes and hoses. A good tune-up, carb overhaul and replacing emission system hoses would probably go a long way to making the engine run even better. Additionally, the exhaust should be replaced. This car has a number of electrical gremlins that need to be addressed. Sometimes an accessory will work, other times it may not. Typically, the problem is loose connections, bad grounds or maybe a failed switch. Personally, I don’t think the electrical problems are significant and could probably be resolved in an afternoon of troubleshooting.
The seats were recovered in a non-original material/pattern. The original (and very distinct) seat covers were of a poor quality and usually didn’t last more than a couple of years. The existing TR8 steering wheel needs to be recovered or replaced and the original “pewter” shag carpeting needs to be replaced. The convertible top looks to be new.
The Spider is a rare car and this particular example could be brought back with a rolling restoration (my original plan). This is not a rusty piece of junk but instead a basically solid car that is a good candidate for a light (or complete) restoration or just a cosmetic refurb and use it as is. Feel free to call me (908 453 4191) if you would like any additional info or other photos.