The announcement of this was made in the motoring press in July 1966. The Mk2 was still moderately priced at R1 650 in a market where an Austin Cooper ‘S’ cost R1 765, a Renault Caravelle R2 300, a GSM Flamingo 1500 GT R2 596 and a Sunbeam Alpine 260 cost R3 350.
Mechanical changes on the 1147cc engine included revised camshaft design and a fabricated 4-branch exhaust manifold. The output of the Mk2 was improved by 3kW to 50kW and top speed increased to 155km/h. A water-heated inlet manifold ensured quicker warming up and a no-loss cooling system was introduced. A diaphragm-type clutch was introduced which required less pedal effort.
On the outside the look was updated with a new-look front grille and Mk2 insignia on the boot lid. Several interior improvements were introduced such as extra trim where there was previously bare metal – the fascia (except for the central instrument panel), passenger’s grab handle, parcel rail, fascia support and windscreen surround were trimmed in black vynide. New seats provided more comfort and moulded carpets were added.
The Spitfire Mk2’s price increased in 18 months by R64 (from R1 650 to R1 714) representing a 3.9% increase. Production of the Mk2 continued at Motor Assemblies until September 1967. Their records show that 257 units were assembled but according to NAAMSA records 223 were sold in 1966 and 42 in 1967 for a total of 265 units. This discrepancy of 8 units can probably be attributed to direct imports.
Between October 1967 and September ‘68 there was no Spitfire production in South Africa. It seemed to kick off again in September 1968 with Leykor Distributors announcing that South African assembly of the Triumph Spitfire Mk3 in South Africa had commenced. NAAMSA sales figures confirm that 89 Spitfires were sold in 1968 but for the first time recorded these sales under the newly-formed Leyland Motor Corporation of S.A. Limited banner.