The Triumph 2000 was a mid-sized automobile produced in Coventry by the Triumph Motor Company between 1963 and 1977.
Using the six cylinder engine first seen in the Standard Vanguard at the end of 1960 and 4 speed manual gearbox (overdrive and 3 speed automatic were options), the monocoque body had independent suspension all round using coil springs. The servo assisted brakes were disc at the front and drums at the rear. Triumph's 2000 competed with the contemporary Rover P6 2000, which initially was offered only with a four-cylinder engine.
Many of these cars are still on the road, supported by owners clubs and
specialist parts suppliers. They make an excellent introduction to the classic
car scene. Prices vary depending on year and model with the mk1 2.5PI estate
being the most valuable. A good roadworthy 2000 will cost around £7-800 with
mint examples fetching upwards of £3500. A mk1 PI recently sold for £11,000. The
2000 and derivatives are also popular with modifiers due to their common parts
and engines shared between other Triumph models such as the TR6, GT6, and
Vitesse, this has been re-enforced by recent magazine articles showcasing
modified Triumphs. As one owner quoted "Where else can you find a car that does
140mph in wood and leather for so little?"
Triumph 2000 Mark I; "Barb"
The "Mark I" was built between 1963 and 1969; It came in saloon and estate
forms. The estate, launched in 1965 with body shell partly built by Carbodies,
was in the Mark I version the same length as the saloon. Various minor
improvements were made during the period of which the most noteworthy, probably,
was a significant upgrade in October 1966 to the "previously rather ineffective"
ventilation, with eyeball vents added in the centre of the facia and the heater
controls repositioned beneath them.
A substantial facelift styled by Michelotti came in 1969, updating the car for
the 1970s, and was signalled as the introduction of the Triumph 2000 Mk II.
In 1968 the 2.5 PI Mark I was launched, fitted with a Lucas Automotive
mechanical fuel injection system. Performance was very good, but the PI models
(along with the TR6 models) gained a reputation for unreliability and poor fuel
economy. In Australia these models suffered badly because of the summer heat.
The electric fuel pump commonly overheated causing fuel to vaporise and render
the engine inoperable until the pump cooled down. The overheating of the pump
was a combination very high pressure fuel loads (over 110 psi) and a pump that
was adapted from what was originally a windscreen wiper motor. As such, it did
not cope well with sustained pressures in moderate to high ambient temperatures.
Because of the launch late in the Mark I's life, there are relatively few PIs in
the original shape.
Triumph 2000 Mark II; "Innsbruck"
In October 1969,
the Mark II range was launched, aping the look of the then-upcoming Triumph Stag
grand tourer. There were entry-level 2000 models, which were the most plentiful,
but the remainder of the range consisted of 2500, 2500 TC and
2500 PI models. Apart from the PI models, all Triumph 2000 and 2500s had
twin Stromberg or SU carburettors, hence the twin carburettor configurations of
these cars were designated with the prefix "TC". In June 1975 the 2500S
model, with 14 inch (356 mm) wheels and anti-roll bar, was added: it replaced
the 2.5PI which had quietly disappeared from the show rooms two months earlier.
This marked the end of fuel injected engines for the car, but improved
acceleration was claimed for the twin carburettor 2500S and its slightly less
expensive 2500TC sibling.
These new versions featured an extensive list of other, mostly minor,
improvements, of which the most significant were probably those affecting the
ride and handling: these resulted from suspension changes and the associated
fitting of an 'anti-sway' bar.
The Estate in the Mark II version was 5 inches (125 mm) shorter than the MkII
saloon, this is because the rear bodywork of the car was carried over unchanged
from the MkI version.
The Mark II, the last big Triumph car, ceased production in 1977, supplanted
by BL's corporate executive car, the Rover SD1: Six cylinder 2300 and 2600
versions of the new Rover would nonetheless be powered by engines derived from
the Triumph 2000. A few Triumph 2000s were still being registered in New Zealand
as late as 1979.
Sir Robert Muldoon, New Zealand's then-Prime Minister,
privately owned a 2500S and had been known to drive to work in it.
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