1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose

   
Big Test Targas on tour - 1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose 2018 Jonathan Jacob & Drive-My

Targa Time… Can the Porsche 911 Targa, Triumph TR4 Surrey Top, Ferrari 348ts, Toyota MR2 T-bar and TVR Tuscan successfully combine roofless rawness and coupé civility? And why now’s the time to buy them. ‘As time passes, they’ll look more classic than their conventional tin- or soft-top stablemates’ The targa roof’s modern-day obsolescence has made them late bloomers on the classic landscape. With their appeal growing by the minute, we take five of the best targa buys for a tour of the North York Moors. Words Sam Dawson. Photography Jonathan Jacob.

 

Best of both worlds:  Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa G-Type leads TR4A Surrey Top, Ferrari 348ts, TVR Tuscan and Toyota MR2 MkI T-bar on our Big Test…

Targas on tour The Big Test  Why 2018’s the year to get into our £5-50k summer sizzlers. Top five choices from Porsche, Triumph, Ferrari, and Toyota.


Targa. It’s Italian for ‘shield’ and conjures up thoughts of Sicilian and Tasmanian road races. Thanks to Porsche’s use of the term, it’s also become the de facto name for a solid removable roof. It’s a neat piece of design that means – in theory – you can enjoy both hardtop and roofless motoring on a whim. The dramatic microsystems of weather found in the undulations of the North York Moors should test this idea to its limits as we pit five different takes on the targa - front-, mid- and rear-engined – against this wind-chilled, often-unforgiving landscape.


1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose
1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose

Targas are also a form of engineering fairly recently lost to time. Once Mercedes-Benz and Peugeot perfected electric folding hardtops, new-car buyers didn’t want to fiddle with a lift-of panel any more. It leaves targa-topped classics with uniquely period appeal, so as time passes, they’ll look more classic than their conventional tin- or soft-top stablemates. Buy one now and you’ll be ahead of a market that’s seeing these cars as increasingly desirable.


1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose
1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose The roads of the North York Moors, both secluded and exposed, tested our targas to the limit.

Our group of five spans prices from sub-£5k to £50k and applies the concept to everything from the traditional Sixties British roadster to the Eighties Italian supercar. But how will they fare?


1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose
1966 Triumph TR4A vs. 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa Supersport G-Series, 1987 Toyota MR2 MkI, 1992 Ferrari 348ts, 2001 TVR Tuscan Speed Six Red Rose


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