Andy's Advice: Jaguar, a Car for All Needs

Story By Andy Reid

One of the greatest things about the classic sports car hobby is the number of different options there are for collecting. If you’re into roadsters, for example, it’s more than easy to have a collection at either the low or the high end. Into GT cars? You have even more ways to assemble a fleet.

While working on cars a few weeks ago with my friend Tom, we ended up in one of those silly conversations that seem to happen often with car people. We all know the usual topics: If you could only have one car, what would it be? What is the all-time greatest sports car? Are Japanese cars ever going to be truly collectible? (By the way, I answer yes to that last one.)

This time, though, the question posed was one I hadn’t heard before: If you could only collect a single marque and had unlimited funds, which company’s cars would you choose? There was a follow-up question, too: Is there a single marque that could satisfy all of your wants and needs within the hobby?

If you collect roadsters or exotics or even GT cars, this is easy. There are a number of marques out there that can fit the bill by offering everything you might want. Think Porsche, Ferrari, Aston Martin and even MG and Triumph.

The problem I had is that my friend and I both like various types of cars, from classic sports racers of the 1950s and ’60s to exotics, roadsters and even touring cars from the likes of Bentley and Rolls-Royce. This seemed like a tall order to fill from a single manufacturer. Add to that my love of more modern supercars, and you really throw a wrench in the works.

Over lunch we thought and thought. Ferrari? Nope, they don’t offer much in the way of sedans. How about Porsche? Again, they really only cover three of our categories. Aston Martin? No, there are some holes in their history. How about Triumph? Nope, not quite.

Finally, after getting back to work on the cars, we came up with the answer: Jaguar. The firm from Coventry has nearly offered it all.
In case you think I picked Jaguar because this happens to be our Monterey issue—the E-type will be celebrated all over the Monterey peninsula this year—you are sorely mistaken. Tom and I picked Jaguar because it truly is the only marque that has a car or, in many cases, multiple cars in each category of collector vehicles.

Let’s start with the easiest: sports cars. Jaguar has several landmarks here, including the XK120, XK140, XK150 and E-type, each one available in multiple forms and series.

How about touring cars? Well, there’s the XJS, the XK8 and the XKR.

Sports sedans? Jaguar basically invented the category with the Mark II and then followed it up with the XJ6 and XJ12. More recently, they have given us the XJR and XF.

Next is the proper motor car, so named by Rolls-Royce and Bentley owners. Jaguar delivers here as well. They have classics like the Mark VIII as well as their modern take on the Silver Shadow alternative, the Mark X.

You want prewar styling? How about a nice SS100? A supercar? The XK220 fills that need. Historic sports and racing cars? Try the C-type, D-type and XK-SS. In fact, I think the only thing they’ve missed is the SUV market—not that I’m complaining.

A bonus of the Jaguar marque is it also offers something for just about any budget. Only have $4000 to spend? How about a nice Series III XJ6? Want a honest-to-goodness V12-powered British GT and only have about $6000 in the bank? An XJS fits the bill. Need to transfer a few million? There’s a D-type with your name on it.

If I’m making Jaguars sound like a gateway drug into the collector-car hobby, then I’m pleased. There are far worse ways to spend your money and far more boring cars to spend it on.

Go on, get out there, buy a nice Jaguar and help them celebrate the E-type’s 50th anniversary. You’ll arrive in style in a car that will always offer grace, pace and space.

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View comments on the CMS forums
dougie Reader
7/12/12 8:45 p.m.

I answered Jaguar after reading the 3rd paragraph.... Then continued to read through the entire post...

Coventry has it all for me.


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