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TR7 vs Fiat 124

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Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
I've been thinking about these two cars, trying to find out how they compare, but so far I've not found anything. I did find a comparison between the 7 and a X/19, but I'm not interested in the X car. Does anyone know of any articles, or have any first hand experience on how these two cars compare?

Thanks,
Doug



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"

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Az7fan Avatar
Az7fan Paul Dorman
Tempe, Arizona, USA   USA
I presently own a 77 TR7 but owned a 124 for a few years about 30 years ago. I really liked the 124 as far as driving and it seems that it was very similar to driving a 7. The top was genius as far as ease of up and down...one hand.....the demise of that car was when it started to foam oil up into the valve cover. Didn't have the $ or know how to diagnose the problem and sold it. It was fun though....smileys with beer

Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
Hi Paul,
I'm surprised that the car magazines of the 70s and 80s didn't do comparrisons. If they did, I haven't been able to locate any of them.
Doug



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"

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sliproc Avatar
sliproc Kevin Quistberg E
Long Beach, california, USA   USA
Doug,

Try Road&Track website they did a lot of head to head comparisons of cars in the same class back in the seventies.

uspsmech Avatar
uspsmech Jim F
North Providence, rhode island, USA   USA
1978 Triumph TR8 "007"
Hello Doug
I actually have two 124 spiders, a 1977 and a 1978 (had five at one time)
I know we can't really compare the 124's with my TR8 on power and performance but I would like to give you my opinion of the structure and handling.
124's rust , badly! Floors go away extensively with the bracing. Driving my Fiat is similar to driving a bugeye sprite. Lots of fun, a bit under powered, keep your foot on the floor, the twin cam 1800 can take it and row through the gears It rides quite nice especially having owned a TR4a just previous to the Fiats. Not a bad looking body, roof works easy, lots of room in the interior, easy to work on , parts are plentiful and fairly inexpensive
After getting my TR8 on the road it made me realize just how much better the Triumphs really are. The TR's are more refined or should I say finished. The structure is definitely tighter, the handling is better. I do on ramps at speeds with the 8 that I wouldn't attempt with the 124's and that's not the power, that's the suspension! I think when comparing the 124 it should actually be compared to the spitfire, I've had two. Never complained about the Fiat before I got the TR8 but now the Fiat feels frail, almost fragile (except the motor-it sings) The TR8 inspires confidence, much more robust! When I want to go for a drive, 90 percent of the time it's the Triumph- just the better car Thanks for letting me put my two cents in, Jim.



" Enjoy the Drive", Jim

Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
Thanks for the info Jim. This is the sort of insight I was looking for. I'd like to find a nice -- and affordable -- TR8. Short of that, I'll be looking for a Spyder. The wife says OK so long as I sell the two Spitfires. I won't be selling the TR4A. Having too much fun taking it apart and restoring it. But I am looking for a daily driver that I don't have to take apart and restore.

Doug



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2017-08-04 07:43 PM by Fictioneer.

TR8todd Avatar
TR8todd Todd Kishbach
Mass, USA   USA
1977 Triumph TR7 "Rally Fraud"
1978 Triumph TR8
1979 Triumph TR7
1980 Triumph TR8    & more
Define affordable. Right now is the best time to buy a TR8. They are always the cheapest at the end of the summer and into the early fall. Mid winter(when tax checks come in the mail) is when they are the most expensive. Most likely has to do with supply and demand. Anybody that wanted one for this season has already bought one. People who don't want to store a car for another winter put them up for sale. There was a real nice red one that just sold on eBay for $5K. It was a $10K car all day long after a little sorting out. Owner passed away and the seller didn't do themselves any favors with the description. There is a green one in Washington for $6K that I'd snatch up if it wasn't 3500 miles away.

https://seattle.craigslist.org/see/cto/d/1980-triumph-tr8-convertable/6197687620.html

Do a weekly nation wide craigslist search for TR8s. You can get a sense fairly quickly what the prices are and what you can expect to pay. Bare in mind, most of the ones that sell for way too much seem to be in parts of the country where there aren't many. Here in the Northeast, there are so many, that they seem common. By and large, the TR8s are going to be in better shape than the average TR7 or even the average 124. TR8s are mostly owned by enthusiasts. Not too often you run across one that wasn't. You run across TR7s all the time that were just an old rusty sports car to the owner. TR7s also seem to come with a bunch of parts catalogs, and brand new parts in the trunk that were never installed. TR8s come with shop manuals, original sales literature, old copies of magazine articles, car covers, etc.

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Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
Hi Todd,

I think his asking price is affordable, but he's1400 miles from me. I have the same reservations as you do. Before I buy anything I have to make room here, therefore, the '72 and '79 Spits have to go, and a ton of MGB parts.

Doug



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"

mgbgt111 Avatar
mgbgt111 c erskine c
pelham, shelby county, USA   USA
Doug,
I drove them both every day when they were new. They are just totally different cars and hard to compare. The TR7 drives like a typical British, Japanese, American, German car. The Fiat is a typical Italian car. With the Fiat, you have to have very long arms and short legs. The ride on both is good, and they can both be driven all day without fatigue.
Now that they are 40 years old, the big problem with the Fiat is rust. They came from the factory with rust. The TR7s seem to go a little longer before suffering from the tin worm.
If you are looking at a Fiat, I would go with the Spider 2000 which started in 1979.

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Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
C Erskine C,

I've heard that the Spider 2000 is a nice car -- that one was fuel injected, right?

Doug



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"

mgbgt111 Avatar
mgbgt111 c erskine c
pelham, shelby county, USA   USA
To start with they had a carb. Later they were FI or Turbo charged

Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
The Fiat is the larger of the two, at least by wheelbase measurement. Does it feel larger? I'm looking for something that is more comfortable than my Spitfires, and easier to get into and out of . . . gracefully. winking smiley



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"

mgbgt111 Avatar
mgbgt111 c erskine c
pelham, shelby county, USA   USA
They feel about the same and are a much better ride than the Spit, smiling smiley

lgray001 Avatar
lgray001 Gold Member Larry Gray
Lexington, VA, USA   USA
1976 Triumph TR7 "POS-2"
1979 Triumph TR7 "The Money Pit"
I did the maintenance on my daughter's 124 Sport.

Although it was 25-years ago and didn't have rust, then, I do remember that if you didn't replace the timing belt (Rubber) every 50-miles you ran the risk of having major engine repairs. If the valve timing is off from the piston timing, there is a collision of metal parts even with one revolution of the engine. If you are purchasing a 124, replace the timing belt ASAP unless you are sure it is serviceable for any period of time.

Another thing is that although Lucas is known as the Prince of Darkness, the 124 is the only car I've had to rotate all fuses in their sockets and pull and rotated each bulb in the lamp assemblies to assure continued electrical operation.

The 124 Sport was fun to drive, but I also had a 850 Spyder and I found that the old joke, "FIAT stands for Fix It Again, Tony", is true. When you get on a first name basis with all of the guys in the parts department, you know something is amiss.


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Darth V8R Avatar
Darth V8R Vance Navarrette
Beaverton, Oregon, USA   USA
1980 Triumph TR8 "Wedgie"
In reply to # 1476175 by lgray001
The 124 Sport was fun to drive, but I also had a 850 Spyder and I found that the old joke, "FIAT stands for Fix It Again, Tony", is true.

I was told it stands for "Feeble Italian Attempt at Transportation".

Oh no! Now we will have an endless debate at which is correct!!! eye popping smiley

Vance



1980 Platinum Metallic TR8, navy blue interior
Bare metal respray, Crower cam, raised compression
ported heads, modified Zenith carbs, 0.060" overbore

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