Gallery: 1959 Triumph TR3S Le Mans Tribute

by Samarth Kanal on 30th May 2018

This Triumph pays homage to the marque’s Le Mans entrant

Three Triumph TR3Ss were entered in the 1959 Le Mans 24 Hours, and a tribute to one of the experimental members of the trio, ‘XHP 939’, will go under the hammer at the upcoming H&H Hall of Fame auction on June 5.

The car was essentially a TR3A, but with fibreglass body panels, disc brakes and new cooling fans for the engines. Despite that, the cars were still heavy, weighing in at nearly a tonne, and reliability was an ongoing issue.

According to Kevin Warrington’s extensive history of the Triumph TR, the cooling fans pierced the radiator of two of the three Triumph entries during the race that year, but the third car (XHP 940) had its fans removed in a late pitstop. It still failed to finish the race, retiring from a class-leading seventh-place 23 hours in.

The bodies were subsequently dismantled back in Coventry, but this reincarnation sets out to be as authentic as possible, including the fibreglass bodywork and the 170hp four-cylinder engine.

‘XHP 939’ has competed at Le Mans Legends, the HSCC Gold Cup, the Le Mans Classic and the Silverstone Classic and is eligible for more historic events. H&H Auctions estimates that it will fetch £100,000-£120,000 at the Motor Sport Hall of Fame auction.

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