1974 Jensen Interceptor MkIII
Few owners, the current since 2013; good history; only 63,400 miles from new; over £20k spent since 2013; recent JOC valuation at £49k; working air con and 8-track stereo; a lovely example of the Brummie Ferrari
Hand-built by men in overalls, the Jensen Interceptor is one of those magical cars that has always had the power to make people stop and stare. A fabulous amalgam of Italian style, American muscle and British craftsmanship, only 6,408 were made in total and it is still an occasion to see one of the 600 or so that survive on the UK’s roads pass by.
Styled by Touring of Milan with some subtle tweaks by Vignale (who also made the first bodies), it was small wonder that the Interceptor attracted the glitterati of '60s society when new. Frank Sinatra, Clark Gable, Tony Curtis, Keith Richards, Dusty Springfield, Lord Carrington – the list of famous owners goes on and on, making it all the more amazing that these superb machines are so under-valued today. As rare as any DB Aston, better made and far more potent to boot, they are perhaps the classic car bargain of the modern age.
As the Heritage Certificate confirms, this lovely Interceptor MkIII was built in November 1973, copies of the original factory build sheets documenting the painstaking quality control hoops it had to jump through before it was deemed fit to be released to the supplying dealer, Mists Garage of Handsworth. The first owner was Mr PH Lugg, proprietor of his family’s century-old ironmongery business, Humphrey Lugg Ltd of West Bromwich, who took delivery on 17th January 1974. Finished in Royal Blue with a Beige hide interior, the Interceptor bore his personalised number plate, PHL 1.
It seems that Mr Lugg kept the car until 1977 when ownership transferred to one of the bosses at Alfred H Knight International Ltd, a metals and minerals specialist based in Wallasey. He kept the car for three years before selling it to one of his senior geologists, a Mr S Carr, who was to keep it for the next 33 years (1980 – 2013).
In 1984 the car was treated to some repairs to the underside at a cost of some £4,000 and the following year, while Mr Carr was on a posting in the Far East, the Interceptor was sent back to the Jensen works in West Bromwich for a stem-to-stern going over to restore it to peak condition which cost over £8,000 and included many new parts, all detailed in invoices on file. The car returned to the Jensen works in 1986 to have the interior re-Connollised and again in 1987 to have the air conditioning system and the carburettor overhauled at which point it had covered 58,346 miles.
Over the next three or four years the car was only lightly used, clocking up another 1,300 miles but as Mr Carr was abroad much of the time, it was then put into storage until 2000 when it was sent to Cropredy Bridge Garage for a further bout of titivation at a cost of some £6,700. This included new o/s and n/s chassis side members; new outer sills; new apex support panels and filler panels; new door seals; reconditioned exhaust manifold; new rear wheel bearings; new heavy duty alternator and a thorough engine service and tune up with new vee belts, ignition parts etc.
A good friend of Mr Carr, our vendor had long admired his Interceptor and in 2013 he finally managed to buy the car from him as it just wasn’t getting the use it deserved and had begun to deteriorate following so many years of standing, the mileage at this point being around 61,800. Over the next few years he spent much time and effort getting the car back into the splendid condition you see today, all the work being detailed in copious invoices on file.
The bodywork was tidied up with new rear wheel arch sections and new lower front wing sections supplied by Martin Robey, followed by a thorough underseal and waxoil treatment. Other new parts include: rear suspension springs; gearbox mountings; brake pipes and hoses; full set of wheel studs; door mirrors; rear seat belts; air con overhaul and upgrade plus much else besides.
In 2019/20 the car was sent to Kestrel Classics of Redditch for further work which included: uprated cooling fans; reconditioned steering rack; overhaul of the electric window mechanisms; 100amp alternator upgrade; spin-on oil filter conversion; new door frame and window seals; full service and engine tune plus a host of other jobs. A quick tot up of the invoices shows that over £20,000 has been spent on the car since 2013 and in 2018 it was valued by the Jensen Owners’ Club at £49,250.
Being offered here at barely half that amount, it was driven over 70 miles to the sale (the vendor taking the scenic route because he was enjoying it so much) and has an MOT to April 2022 with no advisories recorded. It also comes with a fitted indoor car cover, four sets of keys and the original, fully functioning, 8-track stereo plus a box full of period tapes to sing along to.
Starting promptly and running beautifully as we have moved it around on site, this well-historied Jensen, with few owners, low mileage (63,480) and much recent expenditure looks an absolute steal at the modest guide price suggested.
For more information contact James on 07970 309907 or email [email protected]
Reg No: SOL953M
Chassis Number: 22409224
Engine Number: 4C12358
Engine Size: 7212
Docs: V5C; older V5C and V5; MOT April 2022 with no advisories; 14 old MOTs; many invoices; JOC valuation certificate; Heritage Certificate; factory build sheets; workshop manual; parts catalogue
Hammer Price (inc. buyers premium)
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