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1968 JAGUAR 340 MK11

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1968 JAGUAR 340 MK11

Background

The car of choice for the discerning armed robber in the 1960s, the Jaguar MKII is the perfect high-speed luxury express with its decadent interior and sporting chassis. That it is one of the best-looking saloon cars ever built just adds to its already considerable appeal.

Launched as a full-spectrum, three-model range from the very beginning, the 2.4-litre, 120bhp engine formed the bedrock of the MKII line-up, with the performance-oriented customer able to choose between 3.4-litre and 3.8-litre engines that offer 210bhp and 220bhp respectively, a more-than-adequate output that offered the well-heeled driver more performance than almost anything else in its class.

Launched in 1959 to a post-rationing Britain still reeling from World War II, the Jaguar’s independent front suspension and trailing arm suspension at the rear offered sparkling handling, while all-wheel disc brakes meant that it stopped as quickly as it accelerated.

In fact, the chassis and engine were so far ahead of their time that it was raced very successfully in period by luminaries such as Denny Hulme, Roy Salvadori, and Duncan Hamilton.

Re-badged the 240 and 340 in late 1967 while Jaguar waited for the XJ6 to ramp up, the 340 died in 1968 with the 240 limping on for another year until the stockpile of parts the firm had accumulated had been used up.

All-in-all, 83,976 MKIIs were built with the 240 and 340 accounting for another 4,446 and 2,788 respectively. The ultra-rare 380, which was never a standard factory model, is thought to comprise just a dozen cars.

PATINA PICKS: https://picks.getpatina.com/2015/11/jaguar-mk2-the-perfect-getaway-car/

The Vehicle

The current owner Purchased this car from us back last year and due to a busy life style and a need for more space has unfortunately made the decision to let this lovely Jaguar move on to a new home.   

Already a good car, it was professionally restored over the last ten years. This is a much sought-after manual O/D gearbox car that is fitted with a Webasto sunroof. Still finished in its original colour of Honey Beige, its condition is so good that it was invited to attend the Jaguar 75th Anniversary run as the representative of the model (accompanied by the motoring correspondent for the Russian edition of Playboy, no less…) and to be one of the parade cars at Classic Le Mans in 2010.

Now being offered for sale, this is a rare opportunity to buy an extraordinarily well-sorted Jaguar MKII/340 for what might be a bit of a bargain-basement price…

On the Outside

The owner is a fastidious man, so the bodywork is pretty much all new from the swage line down. The labour for this work alone came to £8,000 but it was worth every penny as the panel alignment is mightily impressive, and the overall fit-and-finish is probably better than it ever had in period.

The Honey Beige paintwork is very good, and the chromework is magnificent, partly due to the re-chromed rear bumper. The details are there too including tinted windows, and the whole thing has been assembled with an uncommon degree of skill.

The Jaguar sits on a new set of MWS wire wheels. They’re in great shape and shod with matching 185VR15 Dimax Classic tyres, all of which have good tread

As we will never tire of explaining, our experience shows that matching tyres are an infallible sign of a caring and mechanically sympathetic owner who is prepared to spend the appropriate amount in maintaining their car properly. Their presence does not, of course, preclude the need for a thorough inspection - something the vendor would welcome, by the way – but do give you a shortcut into their attitude towards maintenance.

The Jaguar also comes with a spare set of wire wheels and eared spinners, which could be used for a set of winter tyres, perhaps?

The Everflex sunroof has been refurbished and fitted with a new headlining. This work was carried out by The Trimming Centre (the same people who did the majority of the interior trimming) in August 2018 at a cost of around £1,400. Of course, it now opens and closes as it should and seals tightly.

Work to do? Well, nothing really. It really is every bit as fabulous as it looks in the photos bar the odd stonechip and a minor crack to the valance near the exhaust tailpipes.

On the Inside

The 340’s standard synthetic faux-leather ‘Ambla’ upholstery has been replaced with butter-soft Sand leather on the seats, centre console, central armrest, radio panel and side trims. Matching Sand leathercloth has been used everywhere else.

The leather seats are simply wonderful being wide and comfortable and typically cossetting. Bearing only very light creasing, they need nothing other than the occasional feed and the odd admiring glance.

The door cards look just as good with very neat stitching, good chrome door furniture, and freshly finished wooden cappings.

And, speaking of which, the rest of the woodwork in the cockpit is utterly magnificent. Freshly re-varnished, it makes the strongest case we’ve seen yet for a traditional wood ‘n’ leather finish in a classic luxury car.

The 340 has also been fitted with new carpets and additional soundproofing underneath them, and the manual window winding mechanism has been reinstated after electric windows had been installed.

The owner is clearly something of a completist and no detail appears to have escaped his notice: The wooden Mota-Lita steering wheel looks terrific, as does the twin-spindle radio. The sill tread plates feature the original ‘Moore of Brighton (1924) Ltd’ dealer plaques, which are a wonderfully authentic touch, as is the period Lucas hazard warning switch panel.

The metalwork in the boot is solid and has well-painted inner wings. There is a modest amount of surface rust on the floor that could do with catching, but it isn’t anything more serious at this stage.

Work to do is minimal. There’s a loose screw on the trim in the driver’s footwell and, er, well that’s about it really. And if you ask us nicely we’ll tighten that up for the winning bidder as part of the service.

Can’t say fairer than that, can we?

Underneath

The mechanical refurbishment has been as comprehensive as that elsewhere. There’s far too much to list here but it comprised, in brief, work to the engine, gearbox, cooling system, suspension, brakes, rear axle, steering and electrical system.

The most recent bill from Enginuity was for almost £3,500. This was incurred following a vast amount of suspension work and miscellaneous fettling in January 2020. Again, please see the bill for the full details.

The 340 also benefits from a few well-chosen upgrades to help it cope with modern traffic conditions. These include a Kenlowe electric fan, Koni dampers, an unleaded cylinder head and a ‘123’ electronic ignition system.

The owner describes the car as being “thoroughly sorted” and says it “feels tight and together.” Please take the time to leaf through the dozens of invoices and bills to see just how extensive this element of the restoration was.

The engine exhales through a sports stainless steel item, and having driven it we can confirm that the owner’s assessment is spot-on; this is a very well sorted example indeed that drives really well and purrs into life at the turn of the key thanks to the automatic choke.

The engine bay is very clean and neatly detailed but some of the paintwork on the bulkhead and inner wings isn’t quite to the same high standard as that of the exterior. The underside is solid and professionally undersealed, but some of the older protection is flaking off here and there and could do with wire-brushing and re-sealing.

History Highlights

The Jaguar doesn’t have a current MoT certificate, and while it is exempt by virtue of its age, we would strongly encourage the new owner to have the car re-MoT’d at the earliest. The cost of an MoT is a small investment when offset against the purchase and upkeep of any classic car, and it gives an independent, third-party assessment of the car’s condition, which not only provides reassurance to the owner (and any subsequent purchasers) but might also be invaluable in the event of a bump when negotiating with the police and any interested insurance companies…

It also still has its original owner’s handbook, the Production Record Trace Certificate, the ‘Periodic Maintenance Vouchers’ booklet, and two sets of keys.

It also comes with an old V5 registration document, some classic car magazines featuring road tests and model profiles, a Hayne’s Workshop Manual, and a parts catalogue.

Please visit the documents section of the gallery of this listing where you will find photos of this and other paperwork to support our claim that this car has been restored and refurbished to a very high standard.

What We Think

The Jaguar MKII/340 is, for many people, THE iconic 1960’s sporting saloon. A favourite with cops, robbers, bankers and rock stars, it’s as classless as it is fun to drive.

And it is great fun to drive, being sporty and slidey when you want to hoon, and cosseting and luxurious when you want to waft. Capable of fulfilling multiple roles, a well-sorted Jaguar is a joyful thing and one that makes even the shortest journey a genuine pleasure, not least because people will fall over themselves to let you out of junctions.

So, how much is a car like this, one that could transform your motoring (and maybe even your romantic…) life, going to cost you? Probably less than you think because we think this example, being sold fully fettled and in need of almost nothing, will only fetch somewhere between £26,000 and £34,000.

Ridiculous, isn’t it?

Viewing is always encouraged (within Govt. guidelines of course), and this particular car is located with the vendor in Tenterden. To arrange an appointment please use the ‘Contact Seller’ button at the top of the listing. Feel free to ask any questions or make observations in the comments section below, or try our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

This vehicle is not with us at The Market’s HQ, which means we have had to rely on the owner’s description of it, in conjunction with the photographs you see here, to compile the listing.

With this in mind, we would encourage potential bidders to contact the owner themselves and arrange to view the car in person, or to arrange a dedicated video call in which they can view the car virtually and ask questions.

EU & BREXIT - If you are bidding from overseas & planning to export your vehicle abroad, you should be aware of two important things: 1) There is no VAT on used cars in the UK. 2) After Brexit, you might have to pay import tax in your country.

If needed, please remember we have a network of trusted suppliers we work with regularly and can recommend: Classic & Sportscar Finance for purchase-financing, Footman James for classic car insurance, CLASSIC CONCIERGE LTD for storing your car and an array of regional providers for transporting it.

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we never stop encouraging bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at the vehicles delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using simple cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, the Sale of Goods Act 1979 does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

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Seller

birdcage

  • Location: Tenterden, Kent
  • Odometer Reading: 8281
  • Chassis Number: 1J52143DN
  • Engine: 3.4
  • Gearbox: Manual
  • Colour: Honey Beige
  • Interior: Cream Leather

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