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1946 Triumph 3T


As Triumph production reverted to civilian machines immediately after the end of World War II, the company announced the new 3T, a 350cc companion to Edward Turner’s 500cc 5T Speed Twin. The 3T was similar in many respects to the Speed Twin, but also borrowed features from the TRW and 3TW military motorcycles. Basic engine design followed the 5T, but featured rocker boxes incorporated into the iron cylinder-head casting and a built-up crankshaft with one-piece connecting rods. The punchy, vertical twin developed 19bhp and was timed by Motor Cycling testers at 74mph on the top end. Ridden normally, the 3T returned fuel economy approaching 80mpg and was warmly received by economy-minded buyers. The engine possessed a measure of the low-down ‘grunt’ associated with Triumph’s larger twins and as a result was a pleasant, charismatic machine to ride. In production from 1946-51 and never built in huge numbers, a 3T is a rare sight today, especially in the U.S. This particular 1946 Triumph 3T was sold at the big Mecum Auction in January 2017 in Las Vegas. It sold for $12,000.


Engine type
Bore & Stroke
Compression Ratio
Engine output
Primary drive
Final drive
Frame type
Suspension, front
Suspension, rear
Brake, front
Brake, rear
Tire size, front
Tire size, rear
Overall length
Overall width
Seat height
Dry weight
Fuel capacity
Oil capacity
OHV parallel twin
349cc / 21.3 ci
2.17″ X 2.89″ / 55mm X 73.4mm
19 bhp
Multi-plate, wet
4-speed, right-foot shift
Steel tube, brazed lugs
Telescopic, hydraulically-dampened
Rigid w/sprung rear hub
SLS drum
SLS drum
3.25″ X 19″
3.25″ X 19″
53.3″ / 1353mm
82.5″ / 2096mm
28.5″ / 724mm
28.5″ / 724mm
335 lbs / 152 kg
3.75 US gal / 3.1 Imp gal / 14.2L
7.17 US pts / 5.98 UK pts / 3.4L