This is not simply a rebuild or a common-or-garden restoration, it's a rejuvenation of a 1960's icon, a renovation of all that is classic, with touches of modernisation. This is a true English treasure and one that has been restored with a passion befitting its heritage.
The restoration was undertaken without any stone left unturned, in short, there isn’t a nut, bolt, bearing, gasket or bush that hasn't been restored or replaced, this truly is an beautiful example of this magnificent piece of automotive art.
In order to produce a car of this quality, a perfect base must be used. While beautiful, these cars were not designed well when it came to corrosion. Water traps within the chassis, spot welding and a lack of preventative treatments meant that they all rusted through the years, despite the best efforts of those who owned them.
To rectify the extensive rot, the shell was stripped and acid dipped. This process is aggressive and being immersive, gets into every corner, inside every box section and door sill, stripping away dirt, paint, filler and literally eating all rust; what emerges the next day is nothing but clean metal, at least, what's left of it.
Once dipped, it was brought back to begin the process of extensive welding, replacement of panels and fabrication to bring the shell back to its original condition. However, factory condition is just our starting point. Spot welds were replaced with seam welds, which are not only stronger, but help prevent water from becoming trapped between panels and rotting them from the inside out. All seam welds were then ground down, leaving a beautiful, clean, solid shell, which was almost a shame to cover with paint and parts.
Once the shell was ready, it was dipped a second time, to ensure it was clean, that any surface rust that tried to take hold during the welding phase was removed and then it was immersed once more to apply the Electrophoretic Coating. This process is common amongst modern manufacturers, providing corrosion protection and being immersed, it reaches every possible surface and permeates deep into the base metal.
Having been protectively coated, it was taken to paint to receive a sumptuous, multi-coat respray in period Jaguar Cornish Grey.
As a belt and braces approach, once painted, underseal was applied to the chassis; while thease measures cannot guarantee rust will not occur, we have taken every effort to prevent it.
Sadly, through time, the beautiful, signature chrome of the Mk2 had become pitted and corroded; as such, each piece of brightwork, from the grille to window winders were stripped, coated and re-chromed to an immaculate finish.
To reflect the stunning exterior, we have produced a sumptuous interior, with every element hand crafted, every section of walnut restored by a true craftsman. All seats have been upholstered using the traditional skills and finished to an impeccable level. Likewise, all carpets, headlining, visors, door cards and every piece of interior trim have been restored to a higher quality than when these beautiful cars rolled off of the production line. The Dashboard has been restored, the walnut facia replaced and while all of the gauges and dials are original, they have all been restored, giving a fresh new look to them.
This car has been fitted with exquisite JL audio amplifiers, providing a modern sound within this bastion of ageless, 60's quality, controlled by a RetroAudio head unit, providing analogue and DAB radio, as well as accepting CDs, USB and Bluetooth, without spoiling the classic look and feel.
The engine, while not the original, which was sadly lost to the mists of time, like every element of this car, has not been simply rebuilt, but re-engineered. All worn parts were replaced, a new oil pump, high quality rings and bearings fitted, the bottom end balanced, the block blueprinted, hardened valve seats were fitted to allow for unleaded petrol to be used without additives. In the theme of improved quality and modern reliability, a number of improvements have been made:
A electronic ignition has been added, including a 123 programmable distributor and coil pack to provide a flawless spark.
A larger, better flowing aluminium radiator has been fitted, cooled by a larger than standard, electric fan, both adding reliability as well as reducing the draw on the engine. Wedded to these cooling elements, a Davis Craig electric water pump and controller replace the original mechanical one. These updates allow the pump to be run at whatever rate the engine needs to ensure perfect cooling at all times, meaning that slow moving traffic on a warm day is no longer a concern. In addition, this system continues to cool the engine once it has been stopped, preventing heat soak. The electric cooling system continues to flow water around the block and if necessary, utilise the fan to slowly reduce this temperature.
We have fitted fully restored , original SU carburetors and on the opposite side, the original exhaust manifolds have been replaced with Hayward and Scott branch manifolds, to bring a little elegance to the engine bay and have been mated to an all new, tuned, stainless steel exhaust, which produce an evocative note. As part of the restoration we have replaced the alternator and starter motor with modern equivilents.
When this car came to us it had previously undergone a conversion from auto to manual, however without knowing its service history we completely stripped the gearbox and differential, examined them and had all bearings and seals, as well as all elements that showed even the slightest wear, replaced and the cases painted.
The front and rear sub frames have been removed, stripped, sand blasted and powder-coated; modern polyurethane bushes replaced originals and modern bearings, made to high tolerances were fitted, all of which were then married to coil-over shocks at the front and at the back, replacing the original leaf spring and shock absorbers.
To finish off the look of the car, we have replaced the stock steel wheels with period wire wheels and traditional knock off hubs.
The brakes fitted to the Mk2 were ahead of their time, with discs front and rear and were exceedingly good for 1961. In order to ensure they perform as well as they possibly can, various modifications have been made.
The brake servo and master cylinder have been replaced, the new units built to tighter tolerances, providing a more powerful system.
All new brake lines have been fitted from front to back, and where rubber lines were originally used, these have been replaced with braided hoses. The front calipers have been replaced with 6 pot alternatives, drastically improving braking response, while the rear calipers have been replaced with modern items, built to original design and fitted with sintered pads.
To avoid any electrical issues the loom on this restoration has been completely replaced, as have all fuse holders, relays and connectors. The new loom was built to the original Jaguar plans, using the same braiding and look incredible, the only differences within this car, is where we have integrated the new functions, such as the cooling system, into the loom, using traditional looking braiding, giving everything a factory fitted look.
This is a stunning example of a 60's classic, an icon of British engineering and a timeless piece of automotive art. We have done all we can to make sure this is a stunning restoration and with the classic car market appreciating year on year, this will be not only a pleasure to own, but a worthwhile investment.
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