1969 Spitfire Mk3 brochure (US/Canada)


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Copyright ©2000-2007
by Eric Kieboom &
Jacob Poortstra
All Rights Reserved

1969 saw a large, long and thin brochure on U.S. dealer's shelves, with a fairly dark layout. It was promoting an intermediate version of the Triumph Spitfire Mk3, with a new, black plastic dashboard which was at the time unique to the U.S. market.
Nice profile picture of a US-spec Triumph Spitfire Mk3. Note the indicator repeaters, whitewall tyres and the somewhat garish wheel covers. US-spec Spitfires Mk3 of this year had seats with integrated headrests, whereas no European-spec Mk3's ever came with headrests.
Tasteful posterior study of the car. Note how the rear numberplate panel was pressed to accomodate much wider European number plates.
Here's the new-for-1969 black plastic dashboard, unique for late US-market Mk3's, which has the instruments in front of the driver instead of in the centre of the dashboard. The heater controls are also new and a definite improvement on the old Mk3 contraptions. This dashboard would be carried over into the MkIV and be made of wood in the 1500.
There's an interesting picture on the lower left: somebody must have cheated by taking out the spare tyre before stacking two suitcases on top of each other. There's no other way anybody could have stuffed four cases in the tiny 6.7ft3/170 litres boot/trunk. The seats are also interesting: integral headrests and horizontal pleating on the seats, which are covered in genuine 'Ambla'. Note: two-point seatbelts were standard.
Apparently, 1969 Triumph Spitfire Mk3's for the US market still came with twin SU carburetters and the extra power that went with them. The engine compartment is nicely uncluttered, without the host of emissions control devices that burdened later US-market Spitfire versions.
Pictures of the front disc brakes, the garish stainless steel wheel covers, the 'dished, sprung spoked, leather covered steering wheel' (nice) and the 'quick release, heavily chromed solid brass filler cap', as first seen on the Triumph TR2. The blue scissor jack in the first pic is original and lived in its own bracket in the boot/trunk.
Optional equipment was available in the form of a centre console with padded armrest and a small item compartment (apparently quite valuable now), AM/FM or AM radio made for Triumph in the U.S. by Bendix (also much sought-after these days), 60-spoke wire wheels and bumper guards to protect the poor little Spitfire against the onslaught of other, invariably much bigger cars in U.S. parking lots. There was also a 'competitions options list' but prospective customers had to write to the Triumph Competion Department to get it.
Just two pictures of the car and a seemingly happy couple in beautiful surroundings.
Triumph Spitfire Mk3 in the harbo(u)r, with what seems like an expensive yacht in the background. Nice, suggestive photography.
And so we come to the technical specifications. There was still 68 brake horsepower on tap, but this was soon to come down after subsequent types were fitted with single Zenith-Stronberg carbs and emissions control equipment. Contrary to other US-market brochures, this one doesn't make a lot of noise about the racing victories of ther Spitfire, but it does mention that 'a complete line of Sports Car Club of America-approved competition equipment is available'.
Back cover of the brochure showing a dark picture of the car and a somehwat plain-looking girl leaning against it.

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