Standard Vanguard Phase III
|Production||1955–1958 37,194 Phase III, 901 Sportsman, 18,852 Ensign and 2318 Ensign de-luxe made|
|Body style||4 door saloon 4 door estate car 2 door coupe utility (Australia)|
|Engine||2088 cc Straight-4 (Phase III) 1670 and 2138 cc (Ensign)|
|Transmission||Four speed manual Overdrive optional automatic from 1957.|
|Wheelbase||102.5 in (2,604 mm)|
|Length||172 in (4,369 mm)|
|Width||67.5 in (1,715 mm)|
|Height||61.5 in (1,562 mm)|
The Phase III was a radical change with the elimination of the separate chassis. There was an overlap in availability of the old model with the Phase II estate continuing into 1956.
UK fuel was no longer restricted to the 72 octane "Pool petrol" of the 1940s and early 1950s, and with the modest increases in available octane levels, the Vanguard's compression ratio was increased to 7.0:1. The 2088 cc engine with its single Solex downdraught carburettor now produced 68 bhp (51 kW; 69 PS).
The front suspension was independent using coil springs and was bolted to a substantial sub-frame which also carried the recirculating ball steering gear. Semi elliptic leaf springs were used on the rear axle. Lockheed hydraulic brakes with 9 in (229 mm) drums were fitted front and rear. The four speed gearbox had a column change and the optional overdrive was operated by a switch on the dash.
The new body was lower and had an increased glass area making it look much more modern and the old two piece flat windscreen gave way to a one piece curved design. The wheelbase increased by 8 in (203 mm) giving much better passenger accommodation. The heater was now a standard fitting. Bench seats were fitted in front and rear with folding centre arm rests. They were covered in Vynide with leather available as an option.
The car was lighter than the superseded model and the gearing was changed to deliver better economy with performance virtually unchanged.
A car with overdrive was tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1956. It had a top speed of 83.7 mph (134.7 km/h), could accelerate from 0–60 mph (97 km/h) in 21.7 seconds and had a fuel consumption of 25.9 miles per imperial gallon (10.9 L/100 km; 21.6 mpg-US). The test car cost £998 including taxes.
A performance model, intended to be badged as the Triumph Renown until shortly before launch, the Vanguard Sportsman was announced in August 1956 with a tuned 90 bhp (67 kW; 91 PS) engine having several features seen on the Triumph TR3 sports car. These included an increased compression ratio to 8.0:1, twin SU carburettors and improved pistons. The final drive ratio was lowered to 4.55:1 to give better acceleration and larger 10 in (254 mm) drums fitted to the brakes. The standard version had a bench front seat but separate seats were an option.
Just 901 examples of the Sportsman model were made up to 1958.
A Sportsman with overdrive was tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1956 and they recorded a top speed of 90.7 mph (146.0 km/h), acceleration from 0–60 mph (97 km/h) in 19.2 seconds and a fuel consumption of 25.6 miles per imperial gallon (11.0 L/100 km; 21.3 mpg-US). The test car cost £1231 including taxes.
Standard Standard Ensign
Introduced in 1956, the Standard Ensign shared its body with the Vanguard Series III, but had a cheapened specification in various respects. It was popular with the RAF (British Royal Air Force).
A basic model, the Ensign, with 1670 cc engine was announced in October 1957 and this continued to use the basic Vanguard body shell after the Vanguard itself was replaced by the Michelotti restyle. Many were bought by the Royal Air Force and in total 18,852 were made. A de-luxe version followed in 1962 and 1963 with larger 2138 cc engine.
A 1670 cc Ensign was tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1958. They recorded a top speed of 77.6 mph (124.9 km/h), acceleration from 0–60 mph (97 km/h) in 24.4 seconds and a fuel consumption of 28.5 miles per imperial gallon (9.91 L/100 km; 23.7 mpg-US). The test car cost £899 including taxes of £300.
In January 1960 a Diesel engined Standard Ensign was announced, featuring the compact "P4C" 1.6 litre 4 cylinder engine produced by specialists Perkins of Peterborough.Claimed output was 43 bhp with fuel consumption, impressively, stated as "about 50 mpg". Those values, given the size of the car, suggest relatively modest top speed and acceleration figures.