THE JAGUAR Mk 2 3.8l: A 17 YEARS OLD APPRECIATION POST
"Grace, Space and Pace" quote by non-other than the big man himself, Sir William Lyons
Growing up in Brunei Darussalam, classic cars are normally a very rare sight. Hell even a 1980's Nissan Skyline GTR is a rare sight and when we Bruneian petrolheads do eventually find one, we will go mad (in excitement). This is because, to be frank for the most part they are only seen as a method of transportation, no special treatment sadly.
Now just picture this, a 1965 Jaguar Mk2 3.8L that is hidden away in a local Chinese businessman garage with the closest main road connecting with the closest and nearest house would be a good 5 km away. This very car has left the Jaguar factory at Coventry and has somehow made 11 thousand, I repeat 11 thousand kilometres crossing baguette, mafia, wartorn and spice region of countries to a relatively unknown South East Asian nation released all the butterflies in my gut, it's like seeing an oasis in the middle of a desert that is finally not a mirage. That shows how happy I was when I get to see it in the flesh.
The Mark 2 at the garage
A getaway car, police car, wedding car or the middle class equivalent to its modern-day grandson the XF, the Mk 2 has funnily enough more in common with Lawrence Olivier, an actor with a thousand faces and a car with a thousand roles. All intimate comparisons aside there is no denying that it definitely fit the roles of speed, practicality and being vogue.
3.8L XK6 straight-six, yes the same straight-six engine that powers the obnoxiously long but seductive Mark X and of course Jaguar's golden boy the E type. It is loaded with 220bhp and a top speed of 125 MPH, which may not seem to be worthy of smashing any speed records or having a drag race with a GTI 𝗯𝘂𝘁 back in 'the early 60s, the coppers could not even chase after it. What is the point of having rearview mirrors when all you could see is the dust you trail behind?
The Jaguar Mark X
The Jaguar E-Type quote "The the most beautiful car in the world" by Enzo Ferrari. Unquote
1963 6 hours of Brands Hatch. Honestly, this over F1. Sincerest apologies
It is known for its racing history such as the 1963 6 hours of Brands Hatch driven by Roy Salvadori. Quick pause an interesting fact about Salvadori, while racing at Silverstone in 1951 his car 𝘀𝗼𝗺𝗲𝗿𝘀𝗮𝘂𝗹𝘁𝗲𝗱 almost 3 times before landing into some hay bales. He was in a critical condition, suffering a fractured skull which left him so close to death he was given the 𝗹𝗮𝘀𝘁 𝗿𝗶𝘁𝗲𝘀 . For all you atheist drivers out there, watch out.
Now I could go on about the MK 2's criminal and constabulary history but I think you could learn enough about that by watching Peter Yates '𝘙𝘰𝘣𝘣𝘦𝘳𝘺'. The same Peter Yates that directed '𝘉𝘶𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘵𝘵' featuring Steven Mcqueen. Interesting and possibly irrelevant fact no.2 I am after all only a Bruneian hence I have no direct relation with British culture, therefore I can't write much on that subject but however although there are a larger number of vintage Japanese cars, Japanese cars were never of much interest to me compared to British cars therefore what I can say is that subconsciously, British cars do catch my eye. Maybe I'm just an Anglophile? Who knows.
The MK2 may not be a Jag worth keeping yeah it is poorly made since it had to be built on the cheap, typical vintage car problems such as breaking down due to transmission or brake failures and most frustrating of all is getting it past government bureaucratic requirements. 𝗠𝗼𝗿𝗲𝗼𝘃𝗲𝗿, parts are incredibly hard to come by which makes repairs a nightmare, 𝗯𝘂𝘁 why should these problems sway me away from classic cars?
Growing up I was and still am fascinated with Jaguar's racing history especially in the 1950s at Le mans and the stir Jaguar cars created during the swinging '60s though it could be a result of me watching too many '90s Top Gear episodes. (Cue in Elgar: Enigma Variations Op.36) But my point is these combinations of fascination just mean it's very distressing to ignore a crucial piece of British engineering and motoring 𝗵𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆. We 𝗺𝘂𝘀𝘁 assimilate it so we can teach the younger generations of petrolheads to admire and learn how far modern cars had come from, only then we can look at the future with more wisdom and growing optimism.