The big cat with grace, space and pace
The face-lift Jaguar arrived in 1959 with a much improved sporting saloon persona. Having more than enough power onboard thanks to the 3.4 and 3.8 version using the E-Type block, the Jaguar MK II also benefited from a wider front and rear track giving it impeccable road manners as well.
The Jaguar Mk II was indeed well received and considering its luxury status was truly considered as a real drivers’ car. With impressive statistics such as the 0-60mph dash achieved in a mere 9.1 seconds and a maximum speed of 120 mph, all this with no loss of refinement. This was seriously impressive performance for the time; the Jaguar 3.4 was outpacing more expensive rivals with ease.
Today sees the Jaguar Mk II as a famed classic British saloon, well known for its starring role in John Thaw’s depiction of Inspector Morse as well as being the iconic getaway car in countless cops and robbers feature films through the sixties.
Values are strong and rising for the iconic Jaguar, reaching £50,000 plus for fine examples of this historic big cat.
|Years Produced||1959 - 1967|
|Performance||0 - 60mph 11.0sec / Top Speed - 120mph|
|Power & Torque||210bhp / 216Ib ft|
|Engine||3442cc / six cylinder / 12 valves|
|Drive-train||Front engine RWD|
|Transmission||Four speed manual with optional overdrive|
VALUATION SINCE LAUNCH
The Jaguar Mk II is still a capable cruiser even based on today’s standards and with such refinery is there any wonder values are soaring. Take a look at the market trends over the last few years.
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A BUYERS GUIDE
The classic cat we all aspire to own can be plagued with pitfalls if you don’t keep your wits about you. Cars from this era have had a long life so make sure you go in with your eyes wide open and be thorough before you buy.
Let’s start with the obvious…rust! At first glance many Mk II’s can look pretty solid; it’s only on closer inspection that the troubles begin. Nearly every one of these classic saloons will have had restoration work done, it’s the quality of the work you have to concern yourself with. It may be stereotypical but take a magnet with you and check all the key areas where filler may lurk.
Under the bonnet
Behind that shiny chrome bumper is the front valance which has a tendency to corrode along with the rear valance. As do sills, wheel arches and floor-pans including the boot. (now’s the time to get that magnet out!) Take a look underneath as well, as sub-frames and chassis’s are not exempt from the dreaded rot. The Jaguars straight six engine is durable but do check for leaks from the rear crank oil seal and cam covers. Should the top end rattle then the camshafts are probably worn and a bottom end rumble combined with an exhaust that smokes could mean it’s time for a rebuild.
Manual or auto? That is the question. When it comes to transmission the manual Moss box is adequate although heavy and slow, the Borg Warner auto is however smoother but also sluggish. Check the fluid as it should be clean, if it smells burnt then this could mean wear or ageing.
Check the brakes and take time to listen on your test drive for worn bushes, old discs and seized callipers, also test the hand brake as they too have a tendency to seize. Looking inside, these big Jags are indeed opulent but beware. If it’s in need of a re-fit, this will be expensive so make sure everything is in good working order.
Restoring a Jaguar Mk II can prove expensive hence good ones are rising in price, the best advice is to spend as much as you can or be prepared to get your hands dirty.
INSURING A Jaguar Mk II (1959 – 1967)
Cruising in a classic Jaguar may not prove economical when it comes to your fuel bill, it will however be inexpensive to insure. At Heritage Insurance with 50 years experience behind us, we offer a tailor made package for one or more cars. We include both our in-house agreed value service and salvage retention should the worst happen at no extra cost, and with limited mileage and club members discounts our annual fully Comprehensive policy proves excellent value for money. Here are some typical examples of how little your insurance could be.
- This quotation has been based on fully comprehensive cover, insured only to drive age 60.
Annual premium – £85.23 with a £100 accidental damage excess.
- This quotation has been based on fully comprehensive cover, insured only to drive age 45.
Annual premium – £87.23 with a £100 accidental damage excess.
- This quotation has been based on fully comprehensive cover, insured only to drive age 30.
Annual premium – £87.42 with a £200 accidental damage excess.
*NB: All insurance quotes are based on the same criteria: The vehicle being garaged overnight. Accident, claim and conviction free and a limited mileage of 3000 per annum with full use of a main car daily. All quotations are based on an Agreed Value of £15,000. Prices may alter depending on individual criteria. Quote carried out January 2016.
The Jaguar XK dual overhead camshaft (DOHC) inline 6-cylinder engine was introduced in 1949 and was manufactured until 1992.
Mark Wilkinson (Managing Partner of Heritage Classic Car Insurance) says
“the archetypal get-away car from the British film era of the sixties is both majestic and full of outright power. It was no wonder these refined machines were the first choice for any would be criminal back in the day.”