1961 Harrington Alpine

I sure do see a lot of excellent examples of things not to do while writing this blog, as well as things that didn’t turn out the way they should have, for many reasons. The 1961 Harrington Alpine is yet another such example. It represented the valiant effort of traditional coach-builder Harrington to branch out in more mass produced vehicles, but there were several problems; first off, in a tax avoidance scheme, the vehicles had to first be bought by the dealers, then modified. We all know how people love to be out of pocket for something that’s not yet sold. Secondly, while the design was aggressive and modern, it wasn’t enough so that the car wasn’t supplanted by cheaper, mass produced competition, such as the MG BGT, for example.

1961 Harrington Alpine
1961 Harrington Alpine

The Harrington Alpine was based, of course, on the Sunbeam Alpine. It was fitted with a 104-horsepower, 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that  had as its only modification an oil cooler. Performance was good, if not breathtaking: top speed of 100 miles per hour, and a 0-60 time of 13 seconds.

The Alpine was also equipped with a four-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension and a live rear axle. It also had front disc brakes, with conventional drums at rear, more than enough to stop this relatively light little car. The 1961 Harrington Alpine stayed in production until 1963; between 400 and 450 of them were built.

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