This fab­u­lous V8-pow­ered GT is still in the af­ford­able bracket, but you must be picky

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Front Page -

AV8 en­gine and a four-seater con­vert­ible is an in­tox­i­cat­ing mix – and it’s also one that’s far less com­mon than you might think. Most usu­ally as­so­ci­ated with mar­ques such as Rolls-Royce, Mercedes-Benz or As­ton Martin, the fam­i­lyfriendly V8 drop-top tends to be very ex­pen­sive to buy and run. But thanks to Tri­umph there’s an al­ter­na­tive that looks stylish, sounds fab­u­lous and can be bought for sur­pris­ingly lit­tle cash... at the mo­ment.

For the same sort of money as a tidy six-pot Rover P5 or four-cylin­der Capri you could have a four-seater con­vert­ible that’s fast, com­fort­able and prac­ti­cal – and far more re­li­able than its rep­u­ta­tion would have you be­lieve.

The Stag was launched in June 1970 with a 3.0-litre V8 that was unique to this car. Buy­ers could choose be­tween man­ual or au­to­matic trans­mis­sions while a hard top was avail­able at ex­tra cost. North Amer­i­can sales started a year later then in Oc­to­ber 1972 over­drive be­came a stan­dard fit­ment for all cars with a man­ual gear­box. A Stag MkII ar­rived in Fe­bru­ary 1973 but changes were slight. The tail panel and sills were now matt black and there was fresh in­stru­men­ta­tion while a hard­top was now in­cluded in the price. The wheel trims be­came all-sil­ver in place of the pre­vi­ous sil­ver and black items and the rear three-quar­ter win­dows were deleted from the soft-top. The over­drive was also switched from an A-Type to a J-Type. Within a cou­ple of months al­loy wheels had re­placed wires on the op­tions list then, in July 1973, the Stag was with­drawn from the US.

There wasn’t a lot more de­vel­op­ment of the Stag be­fore it went out of pro­duc­tion in June 1977. Although air-con had been of­fered as an option it was with­drawn in March 1975 then a year later, the Borg-Warner Type 35 au­to­matic trans­mis­sion was su­per­seded by the Type 65 unit. But within a year the Stag had been killed off after just 25,939 had been built.

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