1978 • Triumph Dolomite Sprint SOLD
Location of the lot Sospel (06), France
Bullet point Exceptional original condition, rare version for the French market
and also Clear history, 50843 original km justified by the maintenance file
Engine capacity1998 cc
Number of cylinders4
Number of gears 4+overdrive
Estimate €15,000 - 20,000
"Triumph Dolomite Sprint: 1st in the 2L Group 1 class - French Circuit Championship 1976". This was Triumph's way of promoting the sporty version of its top-of-the-range saloon in France. Presented at the London Motor Show in October 1971, the Dolomite offered a high level of equipment and respectable performance for its category, but not enough to compete with its direct rival, the BMW 2002. So, very quickly, the engineering office turned its attention to the 4-cylinder engine, which saw its displacement increase from 1854 to 1998 cc, but above all adopted a new 16-valve cylinder head with overhead camshaft designed by Len Dawtrey. Power was now 127hp DIN, performance was much improved and required adapted gearbox ratios; the Stag gearbox was chosen. The handling was also the subject of particular attention with hardened and better guided suspensions. On the outside, the Sprint was recognisable by its vinyl roof, small front spoiler, grille, black stern, light alloy wheels and twin exhaust pipes. Presented in June 1973, the model continued its career until 1980 and took part in numerous races without having to be fear the competition. The car presented here is a rare version for the French market, delivered new to Monaco and registered on 23 November 1978. It has had only 4 owners, all Monegasque, since new and has covered only 50,843 km since leaving the factory, as documented by the maintenance file dating back to its very first service in January 1979. The current owner, a private collector, acquired the car in January 2007 and has since driven approximately 5000 km. This Sprint, still registered in Monaco, had 50193 km at its last technical inspection on 10 October 2014. It will have to be re-tested. Free of any pledge, this car is in a rare state of preservation and comes with its manuals and its original jack.
The body has kept its original white paint (reference NMC) and has never been resprayed. The matt black paint on the sills is slightly faded (photos 006 and 016). The underbody is very sound (photos 086 to 122) and shows only a few superficial rust spots on the floorboards and the rear apron (photos 113, 114, 115 and 120), absolutely normal for a car in such original condition. The doors are well aligned and only the boot suffers from two small dents (photo 053). The car is complete with its model-specific trims, badges and accessories; the vinyl roof is in good original condition. The alloy wheels, also model specific, are in original condition. They are fitted with Michelin Energy 175/70R13 tyres which date from 2013 and have approximately 10% wear. A pair of rectangular fog lights under the front bumper complete the standard equipment. Finally, an amusing detail, the left rear quarter window still features a sticker from the 1978 Monaco Grand Prix.
The upholstery, which is a mixture of dark grey fabric and black leatherette, carries the reference C11 which refers to the colour black. In its original condition, it is well preserved, with no tears or pronounced signs of wear. Only the door panel trim has wrinkled over time (photos 123 to 127). The looped carpets on the floor are original and match the upholstery. The dashboard is complete and conforms to the original, complete with a tripmaster attached to the glovebox hatch. The fog light switch has been added to the left of the standard car radio and a Moto-Lita 3-spoke steering wheel with a wooden rim has replaced the original one which will be supplied with the car. All the on-board equipment is functional.
The engine compartment is in original condition, consistent with the car's mileage. The owner has confirmed that the engine is working as it should. There are numerous invoices showing regular oil changes and in 2014 the cooling hoses were replaced as well as the accessory belt. The carburettors were tuned more recently. The 4-speed gearbox + overdrive on the top two gears matches with the production model for this vintage. On the running gear side, 4 adjustable shock absorbers were fitted in April 2004 and in the previous month, the track rod silentblocks were changed; this operation will have to be renewed at the same time as all the front end silentblocks. The upper steering ball joints were replaced in 2002, the bellows of the lower ball joints will also be renewed. Finally, the exhaust system was recently rebuilt in stainless steel.
Reserve not met