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Mark Seniac

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Hi all

I’m curious as to where the Triumph Vitesse mk1 saloons are.

Have you got one. Have you had one. 
What was its story before you acquired it ?

Where did it end up after you sold it ?

How much did you pay for it and how much did you sell it for ?

What problems did you have with it when you owned it? 

I would love too start a thread about the mk1 vitesse saloon as I have one it’s a 1966 straight 6. A lot of cars mentioned on various chats are stags and the mk2 vitesse 2ltr and other models but not much on the Vitesse mk1 saloon. 
So should you be interested in writing a small or large piece and possibly adding a few pics regarding your Vitesse mk1 saloon then that would be great. 
I’m truly interested in this amazingly rare car and I’m sure others would be as well.

So please help to preserve this wonderful car leave a little story as I and others would love too read about them.

Many thanks 

mark and my Vitesse “lightning”

ps. I will be adding my story and other pics 


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well not a Mk1 but its predecessor  the Vitesse 6   1600  bought in 2003 sold 2015 great fun out performed many and what a smile you get 

the new owner clocked over 100 on a test run and compared to his MG was a flier 

hopefully her new home worked out ok 

two photo shoots for Classics Monthly , brooklands and mosquito museum ( remember that Nigel) and many visits to HQ and on  HQ stand at Stoneleigh

and driven by Danny ( practical classics ) who loved the old drives like a new car  just amazing   "i wasnt expecting that " quoted 

sorry to see her move on but 4 doors and less rorty driving is the Now , but the then was great fun








gbd 2.jpg

here GBD and CUK a local Mk1  at Tssc HQ



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Hi Pete 

great story and what a great looking car.

I’m glad you shared your story sounds like you had a lot of fond memories of your Vitesse.

I’m hoping a few more petrol heads share their stories and pics it would be amazing too have a section you can read and see different styles and warming stories about this great car 

again Thankyou 


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Apologies for the clarity of Pic;. But XGH, was purchased for my wife`s use circa 1982. She used it as her commuter" for some 3 years until her hip operation, and the subsequent loss of muscle strength, made using the clutch a non event. Bought In Camberley, originally in white, When we moved with my job we had an empty garage for 6 weeks, during which time I rebuilt the brake system, repaired a couple of outriggers and patched a hole on the boot, and did a full strip-out respray in Red. I used it as my second car, and both my sons drove it on occasion until the early 90`s, when It was sold on to a Young RAF lad who came to Yeovil from RAF Finningly to collect. Basically Original except for having the (leaky) SU`s it came with, swapped for a pair of reconditioned Strombergs. Currently been on Sorn according to DVLA since around 2012.


Wife, used to like the fact that she could regularly win the traffic light grand prix. on her way to work at Marconi.

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Still miss my 1600 6...    One titled lady owner before me (left to me in her will). In her ownership of the saloon, her husband had the convertible half, sequential number plate 775FLU, same colour scheme. That was sold when he died some years before her.   Both cars showing MOT fails, so doubt if they survive.


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Hi Pete h and mark Powell 

interesting stories on both sad too hear they both may not be on the road seems as though the saloon 1600 6 are probably becoming a bit rare I know a lot in the early days were converted into soft tops for some reason ?!! or changed into 2ltrs I’m hoping we still have a few original left on the roads ?? Lol 

regarding my 1600 I’m definitely keeping it as original as possible during my tenure I have replaced the veneered dash but kept the original one for when I sell him on sometime in the future. 
I’ll post pics soon as I can I’ve stripped him back so I can check all the body work is in good condition and I’m pleased too say it looks solid all round not bad considering he’s a 1966 straight six with overdrive. 
again Thankyou both for participating in my collection of stories and adding your wonderful pics 


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Hi all let me introduce “LIGHTNING “

he’s a 1966 TRIUMPH VITESSE 1600 straight 6 saloon with overdrive.

currently wearing a WEDGEWOOD BLUE  paint job over what I believe to be his original OLIVE GREEN colour. The wheels are COSMICS x5 and are fitted with new FIRESTONE TYRES. Period mod cons are twin SU carbs and SAH branch manifold. 
The previous owner told me that Lightning had been stored for many years and was then taken to IRELAND for a number of years and that the colour change was done whilst he was living over there and due to it being registered in Ireland when he brought the car and registered it over here it had too be re registered but was given the appropriate C plate for its year.

I’ve had an ongoing problem with him the spark plugs sooting up “running rich I thing due too the carbs” and three occasions when he just will not start “again carb or fuel line problem” a little tinkering and he’s always back up and running.

He sounds fantastic and pulls along great keeping up with everyday traffic no problem.. 

there are other bits and bobs I’ve done and I’ll post these on here another day just too keep the thread going should anyone be interested ?....lol ... during my ownership I’ve replaced one sealed headlamp two indicator bulbs one flash unit one new veneered dash one bonnet badge and he’s had a service and greasing. I’ve kept the original parts as I think it’s important should I sell him and the new owner would probably like the original bits ?? .. here’s a load of pics that I hope you’ll like .. ohh and by the way I bought him two years ago and I’m loving every minute with him😁




























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My diary by  JON 147 E  a Triumph Vitesse motorcar.


10 April 1967


This is the day I was first registered to my first owner Mrs Marjorie Sparshott from Shenstone Nr Lichfield, it was just a short run from my supplier P J Evans of Birmingham. I am fitted with overdrive and look very smart in Olive green with cactus trim, Marjorie has splashed out on some very expensive extras including a £35 ( £1000 in today’s money ) Motorola Radio that was almost 5 % of my entire cost…….


  • ·       My basic cost                                         £728.10        

    ·       G800 special tyres                                 £3.16

    ·       Sun roof                                                 £29.20                                                                      

    ·       Luggage rack                                         £10.10

    ·       Seat belts                                                £21.00

    ·       Wing mirrors                                           £5.15

    ·       Seat covers                                             £8.26 X 2

    ·       Twin spot lights                                     £18.40

    ·       Delivery                                                 £11.10

    ·       Tax 12 months                                       £17.10

    ·       Underseal                                               £14.00

    ·       Motorola Radio                          £35.00


    ·       TOTAL                                                  £1080.40


Mrs Marjorie Sparshott proud owner of  JON147E

image.thumb.png.206257771c5b64be53dcf492aa362c36.pngWhat happened next is a long long story but I canít remember that much about it, you know what they say “if you can remember the sixties then you weren’t really there” but then in 1979 Marjorie’s husband died and I was relegated to the woodshed and forgotten about…………….

  2001 Looking much better than I actually am…………….

image.thumb.png.597c68d9ac6e7df48e1399e1296ed8f9.png7  December 2000


On this day Colin (who was to save me) was at a local supplier to his company in Swindon, Wiltshire and during the discussion’s he happened to mention that he wanted a classic car, well can you imagine my luck because the man he told this to was the husband of Marjorie’s grand daughter, he told Colin about poor old me locked in the woodshed in Staffordshire.


Colin decided that even though he really wanted something a bit more racy he would come and take a look at me.


16 December 2000


Colin and his friend Les came and had a look at me, gave me a right going over they did, Colin suggested that poor old Marge wasn’t such a great driver as I have a few knocks under my chassis and some badly repaired damage down my near side, blooming cheek, anyway I do hope they will come back and save me because I can’t hang on much longer, I don’t know what will get me first the dam rust or the family of mice that have taken up residency in my rear seat.




22 December 2000


Colin has made a offer for me, half of what they wanted the cheeky bugger, but he said that although I wasn’t his first choice I needed rescuing and as we were both children of the sixties then he felt a bit sorry for me rotting away in the woodshed. The family have accepted his offer its time to wake up and see what’s happened in the world the last 21 years, I wonder if the Beatles ever caught on? I doubt it, Marjorie always said they made a dam racket and would never replace that nice Mr Edmundo Ros and his big band, anyway one things for sure those awful Rolling Stones certainly won’t be around any more.

  Rear wheel looking a bit out of line and rust in the door……..

image.thumb.png.f492f5c6190ce4dc983389c066ee0e63.png4  January 2001       


Today’s the day they are coming for me at 11 am, first of all they put air in my tyres and then attached a rope to my chassis and hooked me up to the most incredible machine I have ever seen, the paint was unbelievable and his tyres were fatter than a Massey Ferguson , they called this Adonis a ‘Off Roader’ but I can tell you he was nothing and I mean nothing like a Series One Land Rover.

The power was fantastic and he must have had twenty cylinders at least, but as he dragged me from the woodshed I felt my frail chassis buckle at the rear suspension, Les seemed to know what to do in a emergency and even without proper tools he removed my brake drums so I could move freely but I knew I was injured quite badly in my chassis.

They dragged me down to the main road and the cars and trucks looked like nothing I have ever seen, they all had the same paint quality that muscle boy had, but the colours were all quite vulgar and in the words of dear old Marge they were clearly all ‘new money’ while we were very clearly ‘old money’.  None of them had square corners like me and they all seemed to have been just popped cleanly out of a jelly mould, and I have to say that they all looked very much the same shape and dare I say it but just little boring and although I recognized some of the badges like Ford and Vauxhall there were many I didn’t know, names like Toyota, Nissan and Honda but surely there can’t be many of these new kids around, and where have all the Triumphs gone I didn’t see any, perhaps there’s a bridge game or even a tea dance on at the village hall today that’s where they will be.

They were to put me in a lorry but I could not for the life of me see how they could get me inside as it was so high off the ground, and like magic, a platform came down and lifted me gently into the back of the cab, blimey o’reily it was like a scene from Dr Who.

After a couple of hours on the road we arrived at a garage that seemed to have had a lot of facilities such as a inspection pit and welders and a whole lot of stuff that perhaps could restore me to my former glory, Les and Colin went into the pit and looked at my damaged chassis, and you can imagine my joy when I heard them say I could be fixed with the welder but this was followed by shear fear when they said they would try to start me up just to get a noise out of me, some kind of life support system was connected to my battery terminals and I can’t tell you how it felt when the power started to surge through my wiring loom, this was no ordinary power like I remember from a battery this was something else, God you don’t think these bozos have connected me to the mains electric do you,  well what did they expect after Twenty one years in the woodshed, to start up and run like Marjorie’s Singer sewing machine? Les had my plugs out and broke three of them in the process, Colin went off in the most strange vehicle, I think it’s a space ship, and came back with four new plugs bless him, but didn’t anyone tell him I have six plugs in my engine.

Then Les had my carbs apart and stuck a airline up my fuel line, O my word what was that like, are these two completely mad, fuel came out of every hole in my body and sprayed the whole garage, at this moment I felt sure they were going to set me on fire and finish me off for good, don’t they know anything about safe working practices! Les spayed something in my air intake and I think it was drugs because I suddenly felt as if I could fly, off came my rocker cover and two of my sticking valves were released, next thing I know I am cranking over and had no choice but to burst into life, after twenty one years I am running again, I am alive, O my God I am alive who would of thought it, I AM ALIVE.


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That’s enough excitement for one day in anyone’s life, I feel so good I could happily sit here for another Twenty one years but I am also so happy to hear the boys say I sounded as sweet as a nut even if it did cost £5 for plugs, and according to Colin this would be the first of many £5 needed to get me back on the roads.



5  February 2001


I have been sitting here in my new home still glowing from my short engine run, I have been left pretty much alone but this garage is not quite as cosy as the woodshed, I have heard talk of a complete restoration and really hope this will be the case as I know I wont last long in my present condition.


11  February 2001


Wow what a week, I have been stripped of all my Chrome and Interior and all rusty body parts are removed, my gearbox is gone and Engine is sitting in the Garage without any components such as the Starter, Coil and Carbs, boxes of my parts are everywhere I hope these two clowns can put me back together again, Colin has been to the International Triumph show and new Chassis outriggers are sitting in my boot there is talk of welding and lots of people have been to see me and kicked my tyres, Colin says they are all bloody mad and £10,000 was quoted just to prepare and paint me, I hope this wont put them off.


12 March 2001


I am on the move again, this time to a farm and a man called Jim who is going to weld my Chassis, all the new outriggers are fitted and repairs to my underside are made, my rear wheel is put back on to my chassis and I feel wonderful. I just knew this couldn’t last and now because of ‘foot and mouth’ I can’t leave the farm, this reminds me of the year I was born 1967 it seems that this was the last outbreak of this disease, I hope none of the nasty bugs were hiding in my tyres and I have started it all off again.


8 April 2001


Finally I have got off the farm, it necessitated me being pushed to the main road after a tyre wash with disinfectant, its back to Les and his garage but I must admit that I do feel good in the chassis department.

I don’t get much of a chance to rest and soon I am on the truck being moved again, this time it off to Colin’s home in Kempsford and I am put in a very nice warm garage at the side of his house.


May / June / July / August 2001



During these months I am scraped, cleaned and welded around my chassis and finally painted with some wonderful paint that Colin says will keep me strong for another 20 years, then I have my body removed

And find myself scattered all over the garden, its hard to keep track of yourself when your in several pieces, lots of new parts keep arriving at the house and sometimes I hear Colin and his wife Eileen discussing if it a complete waste of money buying all these parts for a rusty old wreck like me, what a cheek, I cant wait to get some of these new parts fitted.


September 2001




My front Tub has been in Colin’s Garage for weeks and I have found myself upside down in the front garden, its not so bad as it summer time but its beginning to get a bit chilly at night and I hear Colin say he needs to get me back inside soon. My front tub has had every hole repaired and the floor pan is as good as new, it painted in the special paint that I have on my chassis, I have new body mounting brackets all round and I am about to be reunited with my front Tub, my life seems good again.



My repaired chassis and that spaceship parked on the drive…………..

That special paint going on my underside…………..

image.thumb.png.8d5b3a7e09576bfef69b8dc121047f4e.png /Nov/Dec 2001



Finally I am back in the warm Garage and my front tub is put back on my chassis, my rear tub is taken away for storage in another dry place but my bonnet assembly remains outside for the whole winter I hope it will be OK, meanwhile I get my rear suspension completely removed and painted, new spring and some really high tech shockers, new half shaft UJs and every nut and bolt is changed, then I get new brakes and brake cylinders plus new trunnions and bushes, sadly I get my rusty wheels put back on, sometimes I wonder about this boy.



January/February/March 2002

                                                                                                                        Will they go back to the original camber???



I am pushed out of the garage on my new rear suspension and turned around, it feels good but Colin is concerned that my wheels have a real negative camber, well what does he expect after all I do have a   new spring, now he starts on the front, again its all parts removed and painted new springs, adjustable shocks, trunnions, new nuts and bolts and I get new grease in my hubs and the correct oil in my trunnions.

Life sure feels good again.

Then something strange happens, another Triumph turns up it looks like one of those flower power hippies that dear old Marge disliked so much, I hear talk of ‘donor vehicle’ but what can he donate as I have every thing new then it dawns on me, he’s a convertible and I am going to get his hood instead of my old sunshine roof!!!!

I and by all accounts neither is Colin really convinced if this is altogether a good idea.




                              Look at the state of me, no dignity…………………….


Will I ever see my roof again????


APRIL 2002


I have been fitted with new Minilite wheels and Dunlop tyres and with my new suspension and brakes it seems I am as good as new again, I get the feeling that Hippie boy is less and less likely to donate his body parts to me and I am glad to say that it looks like I will remain original. I have benefited from some metal being transferred to my own body and it seems that he has some nice parts like K&N air filters, a spin on oil filter and a

Kenlow cooling fan, also it seems that Colin cant remember exactly how I go back together so at least he can now check out what goes where by looking at the Hippie, what is he like………..




The donor car‘Hippy Boy’ New Age meets Old Age…………………………..

image.thumb.png.15be3ee72096de506fe860a8bfefa692.pngMay through Dec 2002


The rest of 2002 saw various parts of me dragged into the garage, and new metal welded into my frail old body. Two new front wings, two rear wings and all sorts of repair panels are welded into me and I get scared that all the heat will twist and buckle me so much and I wont be able to go back together again.




New metal going in everywhere………………



    2003     a bad year


In 2003 Colin got a frozen shoulder and was in so much pain that I never saw him for a whole year, I was scared that no one would be able or even want to put me back together again………….



2004 a good year for me and another bad year for Colin


Still recovering from his shoulder Colin finds that 21 years after joining his company decides to make him and his wife Eileen redundant. Good for me in that he might have time on his hands to put me back together again, yet I also hear them talk about cutting back on finances, so no new parts for me then!!!


Even though his shoulder is not 100% I start to get put back together, Rear Tub and front bonnet assemblies are re-fitted to the chassis. Colin’s pathetic attempt at repairing my door has failed and he finally goes off and buys another one, also he has to undo some of my rear wing welds as I don’t look quite right in the panel fit department. Finally off he goes and enrols in a welding course, bit late for that, as I am 95% welded up, what a clown!!



Engine stripped painted and cleaned and put back together with nice new gaskets, after 70.000 sedate miles with dear old Marge all I need is my valves regrinding. Monkey Boy manages to tip over the Engine stand and I fall to the floor, only damage is a bent head stud, luckily the Hippie can donate a new one. Brand new clutch and bearing and I am reunited with my gearbox, no one knows if it still works and even though Marge crunched a few over the years I think they will hold up, wait and see!!!

Engine and Gearbox put back into the car and I am feeling like a car again.








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VIT 😁🥲

This is what I’m talking about !!!!!! 
thank you so much what an incredible story and well written brought smiles laughter and tears 

great pics and what a description of the sixties fantastic story teller 

from the bottom of my heart many thanks 


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  • 2 weeks later...

Well my 65 vitesse 6 is due to be delivered on Thursday It's currently very original but I am looking at a few tweaks.

It's a saloon in conifer Green (resprayed but original colour), I will try to get some good pictures over the weekend.

Looking at a 5 speed gearbox as it is in the boot and comes with it and then period spots and alloys. Don't want to mess with it to much. 


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On 24/05/2021 at 13:35, Pimp my Vit said:


image.thumb.png.f492f5c6190ce4dc983389c066ee0e63.png4  January 2001       


I saw that pic and got seriously worried... have I viewed that car before? Thankfully, no - it was THIS one... but there's a striking similarity in that side view. Mines a 1200, though.



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Hah Colin Mk 1, I don't think anyone saw or even knew about my car, the original owner locked it away in a wood shed after her husband died and it sat there for 20 years until she sadly passed away, and then after I took it on its spent the last 21 years hiding in my garage...

I wonder how many others are hiding away waiting to be discovered?

Regards Colin Mk 2

Love that Olive and Cactus combo.

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Great thread 👍 

I know I'm going to sound like a pedantic knob, but.... as far as Triumph were concerned there was a Vitesse 6, a Vitesse 2 litre and a Vitesse MkII but never a model designated as a MkI. 

Right, my inner anorack has spoken and will now shut up. 

As you were! 😉

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