Vitesse 1600 1962 to 1966
Triumph Vitesse 1600 1962 to 1966
Upengined and upmarket version of Triumph's small car. Built from 1962 to 1966.
Originally fitted with a 560-13 crossply tyre. From 1965 there was the option of a 155SR13 radial, which can be used as a replacement for the earlier crossply. Additionally, from 1965 there were the options of wider wheels fitting 165/70R13 or even 175/70R13 radial tyres.
The Triumph Vitesse grew out of the Triumph Herald, which was first seen in 1959. With just 38bhp from a 948cc four-cylinder engine, more power was desperately needed. That’s why the Vitesse appeared in 1962, with a 1596cc six-cylinder engine that developed 70bhp. Although it wasn’t much more powerful than the Herald 13/60, the Vitesse had a fabulously smooth engine and rather more torque, making it lovely to drive.
From the outset there was a choice of saloon or convertible bodystyles (but no estate), then in 1966 the Vitesse 2-Litre Mk1 arrived with a 1998cc engine. The displacement gave an extra dose of power (now up to 95bhp), but it was the post-October 1968 Mk2, complete with revised cam and head, which offered the most power and torque. With 104bhp on tap the Vitesse could finally crack 100mph. But the car was to live for just three years, with the final Vitesses built in May 1971.