This 1966 Sunbeam Tiger MkI is a true enthusiast's car. After all, you had Carroll Shelby's winning formula with a V8 in a lightweight British sports car. But where the Cobra would introduce the idea of a car we could drive to the racetrack, the Tiger was the car that was fun to drive everywhere. So to find a first-gen example with such a stock style really lets your senses visit a bygone era where it feels like there were more hours on the weekend and the backroads just belonged to you.
Dual exhaust tips, minilite-style wheels, and a hood scoop are the subtle yet distinct ways this drop-top announces it's a speedy machine. And the clean lines of the MkI Tiger show exactly why it was the right car for the Ford V8 transplant. The outstretched headlights, deeply sloping hood, full-length trim, and tall rear fenders with a hint of tailfin remind us of the first Thunderbird. But this is no mini T-Bird. Sunbeam crafted a true European with svelte lines, tasteful brightwork, and a compact style that lets you know it's a nimble machine. The Arctic White paint is the car's correct color. It has a clean look and an overall driver quality style, and that may just be the ideal way to present this car. Its price is on the value end of the scale. So you may just be looking for a great way to get the car of your dreams, or maybe you're looking for the right base for your restoration. Either way, this one gives you a drop-top classic that lets you hit the road for some carefree fun on day one.
The interior of the Alpine was also the heart of why its Tiger brother became so well regarded. Sunbeam gave these cars reclining bucket seats, roll-up windows, full carpeting, and a substantial dash with plenty of wood. It made these feel comfortable without being oversized or overweight. This one even has a newer black convertible top (it may need an adjustment to fit properly.) So the Tiger had the substantial feel of a car you could drive all weekend long. And we love how it straddles its American and European lineage. The thin-spoke steering wheel and Jaeger gauges are pure British cool. And the floor shifter is unmistakably borrowed from the same Falcon/Mustang line that donated the motor.
Today we all know the Tiger was no weak feline. The 260 V8 badges on the fender and rear are quite important. It reminds everyone that this featherweight British machine has a healthy American heart. It has a very stock and correct presentation. So you can choose to give it the paint and polish of a show-ready car, but we bet you're also excited about a hardy powerhouse that's ready for back road fun from the start. The V8 fires up nicely and the newer dual exhaust gives a subtle intimidation note worthy of the Tiger name. Nimble steering, the control of a four-speed, and the stopping power of front disc brakes make for an excellent classic sports car.
There are plans you may want to do with this one, including giving it a respray (after all, we all dream about diving a blue one like James Bond.) But those are the kind of projects you can plan for in the future. From day one you have a very complete car, right down to earlier maintenance records and the service manual. This example is the kind of classic that gets you in touch with the driving spirit that is the essence of the Carroll Shelby magic. It's a true classic and this one lets you enjoy it without worry today as you plan for the next steps tomorrow. Call now!!!