SOTW: Bargain British Cabrios

In many ways, 1983 was a significant year. Neil Kinnock was elected leader of the Labour Party, the first Microsoft Word was launched, the infamous Hitler Diaries were published (and found to be faked), and your humble scribbler here was born (I know, I don't look a day under 45).

Most significantly for today's shed of the week, however, this beige Triumph TR7 Convertible was registered. Even though the last TR7 dribbled out of Rover's Solihull plant in 1981, this car presumably languished on a forecourt or in a storage unit somewhere, before finally getting 'plated up' (so to speak) a couple of years later.

The last-ever Triumph roadster was never a beautiful thing in its day, nor has time been kind to it (nor was the choice of beige paintwork particularly inspired). It's also got an asthmatic 105bhp 2.0-litre engine. But it's a slice of important (in a maudlin sort of way) British motoring history for just £950, has had just one owner, been driven a mere 54,000 miles and it's got a full year's MOT to boot.

If that still doesn't whet your appetite, then may Shed present to you an alternative British SOTW in which to enjoy the glorious British summer? This 2002 MGTF 1.8 is possibly the youngest car ever to feature as an SOTW.

It ticks all the right boxes in terms of paperwork and MOT, has done a moderately reasonable 87k miles, and ought to be a fine alternative to that ubiquitous PH choice the MX-5.

All is not perfect with this TF, however. We're suspicious of any classified advert whose creator can't spell the word 'convertible', and the advert's text is hardly the most detailed you'll have read. It's the sort of car we'd definitely want to have a good poke around (with an experienced mechanic in tow), but if all seemed good, we'd take it in a heartbeat. And spend the next few months fending off jokes about head gaskets and hairdressers.

But if you think our first two offerings are of dubious pedigree, then we present you this third SOTW as an example of exactly how not to do it. The Anti-SOTW. Sure, it's only £849, but this is the sort of car you just know will wobble like a sheet of paper held by Rolf Harris, and it's only British in that curious way that many people seem to regard Fords as a British brand. Can we think of any redeeming feartures for it?, not really. Other than the fact that it has four seats. And makes the other two offerings here look good...

Adverts are reproduced below...

TR7 Convertible. One owner+54000mls!! (1983)

Beige with Tan interior.One owner from new and genuine 54000mls.Has recently been put back on the road after 20yrs in storage. 12months MOT and runs well but needs repaint and new hood.Ziebart rustproofed from new but now has some rot in front wings. We are selling on behalf of elderly owner.
Good project for someone!

MGTF 1.8 CONVERTABLE 2002 (2002)
87,000 miles £1,000


Ford Escort Cabriolet Convertible Imperial Blue (1996)
95,700 miles £849

Imperial blue Ford Escort cabriolet 1.8 Ghia.
Showing 95700 Miles
MOT Till Jan 28th 2012
Tax Till 07 11
2 recent tyres
Recent oil + filter service
Electric roof (working !)
4 electric windows
Rear spoiler
Front foglights
Central locking

Genuine Ford GTi side skirts
16 inch Mondeo alloy wheels
Polly bush rear beam
After market exhaust
Mk 5 facelift boot (no badge recess) debadged
Genuine MK6 Ford RS accessory rear bumper (Very Rare - not the mk5 facelift model with the line in it) in Imperial blue available extra.

Comments (245) Join the discussion on the forum

  • 300bhp/ton 24 Jun 2011


    As an ex-MGF owner and a current Tr7 owner I can hardly complain about these. Not so sure about the Ford though.... piratical I guess for a vert, but not sure it's anything else.

  • mull1974 24 Jun 2011

    Wow a TR on a Y plate. Very rare and has got to be worth it. I think teh colour suits it in a cheesy way.

  • gforceg 24 Jun 2011

    Of those three I guess it'd be the TR7 for me. Quirky rare and rear drive.

  • MiniMan64 24 Jun 2011

    The Escort has an........electric roof? Really?

  • Goodfella 555 24 Jun 2011

    Nothing worse than a blowing exhurst(!)

    Beige TR7? Ouch.

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