5 WAYS TO MAKE IT BETTER
1 MAKE IT CRUISE EASILY
The Phase 3’s overdrive notably improves the Vanguard’s long-distance credentials. A second-hand overdrive gearbox is the easiest conversion, but finding one for sale can be tricky – expect to pay around £400 if you do. Otherwise, you can retro-fit the unit itself, but some alteration to the gearbox main shaft will be needed, so it’s a good idea to seek advice from the Club.
2 UPGRADE THE CAR’S ELECTRICAL SYSTEMS
The electrical system is a basic affair, but that handily makes it ripe for a few choice improvements. An electronic ignition upgrade is always a good idea, and you can source a simple system from around £50 or spend more on a programmable distributor. Also consider swapping the dynamo for an alternator. Triumph parts specialists will have something suitable, or there’s the period-looking ‘Dynator’ at £400-500.
3 FIT MODERN RUBBER
If it’s time for a set of new boots, then opting for good-quality radial tyres will do wonders for the Vanguard’s handling. A variety of sizes were used depending on year and model so check before you buy, but classic tyre suppliers will be able to recommend something suitable for £120-200 per corner.
4 ADD BETTER BRAKES
The Phase 3’s DIY-friendly nature and cheap and readily available parts means that a brake overhaul is straightforward. If you want to go further you could consider fitting Girling front disc brakes, which were optional on Vanguard Six and Ensign De Luxe models, although sourcing the bits might be tricky.
5 PROTECT THE BODY
Given the propensity for tin worm, it’s well worth making a session with rust-proofing products a part of your annual maintenance regime. It won’t cost a lot and is something you can do over a weekend – and it will save financial pain in the long run.