Profile – Triumph TR3 Beta

Despite the fact that plans for the TR4 were well underway by 1960, the ever present problem of insufficient funds led Triumph management to question the wisdom – and financial viability – of replacing the TR3A with Michelotti’s TR4.

The wider fenders and revised grille are clearly visible in this image

The wider fenders and revised grille are clearly visible in this image

An alternative was proposed that would have been much cheaper (and far less effective) to implement and was based on a revised TR3 that used the rack-and-pinion steering designed for the TR4 along with the larger engine and an increased track. The Triumph TR3 Beta was the result and appeared like a standard TR3 had been given growth hormones or a higher calorie diet.


Despite the increased track the interior room remained the same

A new, wider body was fitted to a TR3A with a new grille and wider fenders (to accommodate the increased track) that resulted in a much stockier sidescreen Triumph roadster. A better plan (that was also considered) would have fitted the car with the Sabrina Twin-Cam engine to create one of the fastest cars in its class.

After further discussion and more thought, the correct decision was made to go ahead with the TR4 due to its greater modernity and luxury (even Healey would soon abandon side curtains) and the two Triumph TR3 Beta prototypes were abandoned to the dustbin of history.

'Profile – Triumph TR3 Beta' have 2 comments

  1. December 26, 2015 @ 6:29 pm Rod Smith

    Wow. My first car was a 1960 TR3, I currently own a ’59 TR3A and I have never heard of the TR3 Beta. I have read numerous articles on Triumph history and this is a complete surprise! Thanks Moss, for digging this out of the archives and sharing!


  2. December 27, 2015 @ 8:28 am Paul Marshall

    My friend had a TR3 back in the early ’60’s at the same time I was driving an AH3000. I considered the TR primitive, hard riding and very “breezy” with the top down. Also tippy. The equivelent of fighting a modern war with a sword.
    Still, I’d love to have a TR3 today as I see them as a poorer mans Morgan…primitive, hard riding, breezy but so very British and of the time. I’m currently driving a ’75 MGB. It has windows in the doors. Imagine that.


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