1974 Triumph Stag
In 1885 Siegfried Bettmann, a German living in London, founded S. Bettmann & Co and started importing bicycles from Europe. Initially, he was selling them under his own trade name, however, in 1886 the name changed to Triumph. In 1897 the company was renamed as the Triumph Cycle Co Ltd and in 1902 the company started producing motor cycles at their factory in Coventry. Business was booming, thanks to big orders from the British Army which needed motor cycles during the First World War and by 1918 Triumph had become Britain’s largest manufacturer of motor cycles.
In 1921 Bettmann acquired the assets of the defunct Dawson Car Company and started producing cars. The first car to wear the Triumph name was the Triumph 10/20. This car and its immediate successors were only produced in small numbers, however, that all changed with the introduction of the Triumph Super 7 in 1927. This car was a success and it was sold in large numbers through until 1934.
In 1930 the name of the company was officially changed to the Triumph Motor Company. Times were tough and Triumph was struggling to compete with larger car companies. The company started having financial problems and in 1936 the bicycle and motorcycle business was sold to Jack Sangster of Arial. In 1939 the Triumph Motor Company went into receivership and the factory, equipment and goodwill were offered for sale. They were sold, but the Second World War stopped production and the Triumph factory was completely destroyed by bombing in 1940.
After the Second World War, what was left of the Triumph Motor Company and the trade name were purchased by the Standard Motor Company. In 1946 the first new Triumph, the 1800 Roadster, was released to directly compete with Jaguar. In 1950 the company decided to use the Triumph name for all sports models and the Standard name for saloon cars. History now says that this was a strategically brilliant move as it signalled the birth of the Triumph TR series cars. The TR series Triumphs stand as iconic British sports cars that are well known and loved by enthusiasts all over the world.
After Standard-Triumph was purchased by Leyland Motors in December 1960 Triumph created a new assembly facility in Speke, Liverpool. During the 1960’s and 1970’s Triumph produced a series of Michelotti styled saloons and sports cars including the Dolomite Sprint, the Triumph 2000, 2.5PI, 2500 TC, the 2500 S and the Stag.
Around 1964 Harry Webster, the director of engineering at Triumph was approached by Giovanni Michelotti with the question if he could have a Triumph 2000 to use for a design project. Michelotti transformed the 4-door saloon into a rather attractive 2-door, 4-seater convertible. Webster was impressed and snapped up the design. However, the car was still far away from being ready for production. It would take till autumn 1969 before the first pre-production model was ready. The Stag was officially introduced to the world in 1970. The Triumph Stag remained in production till 1977 and during that period 25,877 examples were produced. Of those 25,877 models it is understood 6,780 were export models and 1,596 of those were sold in Australia.
Oldtimer Australia is delighted to offer for sale a 1974 Triumph Stag.
This is an Australian delivered, factory right hand drive example with a Borg Warner automatic gearbox, hard top and soft top. The car is presented in the rather cool and ‘very seventies’ original colour of magenta (paint code 92) with a black ‘leathercloth’ interior (trim code 11). The car retains all of its original tags, including the ID or commission plate which confirms the colour scheme as totally original. The Australian compliance plate is stamped 4/74.
Unfortunately, little is known about the history of this Triumph Stag. It is understood the car spend a considerable amount of time in Victoria and in the care of a long term owner before finding its way to Queensland in 2019. The current owner acquired the car in March 2020. When he acquired the car, it needed a few things done to it to make it a reliable driver. He gave the car to his mechanic who serviced the car, replaced the oil filter, drive belts and spark plugs. He also removed the wheels and brake rotors, cleaned the hubs and replaced the wheel bearings. He also replaced all the tie rod end, the sway bar link and the front control arm bushes. There was an oil leak from the rear differential pinion seal which was replaced. A service kit for the Stromberg carburettors was ordered and the carburettors where subsequently rebuilt. In November 2020 the steering rack was removed and overhauled.
Today this Triumph Stag presents well. The ‘magenta’ paintwork, which may well be original, is generally in very good condition. From say a meter away it is excellent for its age, though on closer inspection you will notice some imperfections. There are a few stone chips, cracks and some crazing in the paint. The most noticeable blemish is the crazing on the top of the front left guard. Underneath, the car is incredibly clean, providing further evidence of the originality of the car.
This Stag has both the hard top and the soft top. The condition of the hard top is consistent with the rest of the car and the paintwork. The soft top is in excellent condition and would be reasonably new. It looks almost unused. Take a walk around the car you’ll notice all the panel gaps are really good. The external trim and the bright work on the car is also all in a very good condition, particularly considering the age of the car. The car is fitted with JKN 14” wheels, which were an option offered from 1973-1975. They became standard in 1975. The wheels are dated stamped “J 73” and “K 73”, so would therefore be original to the car. The wheels are shod with Firestone tyres all around and whilst they are in good condition they should be replaced given their age. The condition and age of the tyres confirm that the car has been sparingly used in the last 20 years.
Inside the cabin, the interior is in really good condition. Everything looks to be original. The black upholstery on the seats and door cards is very clean with no rips, tears or damage evident. The front seats are really firm and provide ample support. The rear seats look like they have hardly been used. The steering wheel, dash, instruments and control are in good condition. Even the carpets are in good condition. The same can be said about the woodwork on the dash, though the woodwork around the gear stick surround is worn and there is one noticeable chip. This would be simple to refurbish or replace and would take the overall presentation of the cabin, which is excellent, up a level again.
There’s lots to like about this car as you walk around it. It has a real presence . . . the colour, the condition of the interior . . . it ticks lots of boxes. It is time for a test drive, however, before you do that there is one obvious thing to do and that is to remove the hard top! Once that is stowed on the hard top frame that will accompany the car it’s time to ‘hit the road’. A Stag is after all powered by a 3.0 litre V8 engine!
Once you’ve made yourself comfortable behind the steering wheel you are ready to start the car. Turn the ignition on, wait a few seconds for the fuel pump to prime the carburettors and then you can start the car. Once the engine fires you feather the accelerator pedal to keep the revs up. Woah . . . the engine makes a great sound! It has a throaty bark, but it is smooth and not ‘lumpy’ like a muscle car. The engine warms quickly and you are soon good to go. Whilst the car is equipped with a choke we haven’t had the need to use it.
The first impressions are really good, in fact . . . REALLY good! What’s immediately obvious is that the engine is smooth with loads of power on tap. Once you’ve travelled say 10 km you get this car. The recent work done on the front suspension is clearly noticeable. The car feels tight on the road. The steering is precise, the car handles well and the brakes do their job. The only thing we can fault is that when you first select “drive”, there is a slight ‘clunk’ when you engage gear, however, out on the open road the gear changes are smooth.
The Stag’s current owner lives west of Brisbane and the car was driven around 150 km on its journey to our showroom where it did not miss a beat.
A change in direction has resulted in the current owner reluctantly offering this car for sale. This is an incredibly original and unmolested Triumph Stag that is ready for its next owner to use and enjoy.
This car has clearly had a cherished life and been meticulously cared for by its previous owners.
Accompanying the car is a spare wheel, jack, owner’s manual and a hard top stand.
Your ‘ticket to ride’ this purple Stag is a pair of flared jeans, an orange jacket and of course a Bee Gees cassette!
- An Australian delivered, factory RHD example.
- Finished in its original and ‘so seventies’ original colour scheme.
- Well presented interior.
- Hard top / soft top.
- An unmolested example with all ID tags in place.
- Triumph Stag
- 96,900 miles
Register interest if a similar car becomes available