British Layland today (20 January) unveiled a completely new sports car -- the Triumph TR7 -- which it said is aimed deliberately, and for at least the next year exclusively, at the North american market.
SV TR-7 driving off (2 shots)
TRACKING SHOT car along road (2 shots)
GV PAN cars taking curve
SV TR-7 parked beside TR-6
CU fronts and insignia of both cars
SV headlight covers opening and closing
SV man opening bonnet
CU engine (2 shots)
SV man closing bonnet
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Background: British Layland today (20 January) unveiled a completely new sports car -- the Triumph TR7 -- which it said is aimed deliberately, and for at least the next year exclusively, at the North american market.
The entire first year's production of the TR7 will be left-hand-drive models, and all will be exported to the United States and Canada, which a Leyland spokesman called the world's biggest sports car market. The car will not be available in Britain or anywhere else outside North America "for some time", the company said.
At a time of world-wide recession in the automobile industry, with british Leyland itself already receiving massive government financial assistance -- and coming hard on the heels of the collapse of Britain's prestige Aston Martin sports car company -- Leyland is gambling 11 million pounds sterling (26 million U.S. dollars) on the TR7. That figure is the total investment, the company said, in design, development and new production facilities at Leyland's Liverpool plant, where the TR7 will be made.
The gamble is that the TR7 -- a wedge-shaped, compact, closed two-seater, which the company describes as a complete departure from all previous leyland sports car styling -- will overcome current North American resistance to new-car buying.
Lord Stokes, Chairman of British Leyland, said: "We want to see TR7 earn a lot of money in America. It has an excellent pedigree and comes from a line of TR sports cars which have won a lot of friends in the U.S.A. and all over the world. Since the TR2 was introduced in 1952, nine out of every ten have gone abroad. That's good for British Leyland and good for britain, and I believe the TR7 will better even that record."
The TR7 has a 20 percent smaller engine than its immediate predecessor, the TR6. It is a new two-litre version of the Triumph dolomite engine, which the company said returned an over-all fuel consumption figure of 29 miles (46.6 kilometres) (4.5 litres) per imperial gallon. Maximum speed of the North American version -- in keeping with U.S. federal laws -- is 107 miles per hour (172 kph), and the first-year models will meet all U.S. emission requirements. But in its eventual European form, the company said, there will be more power available and considerably greater performance without the U.S. Emission equipment.