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    Modified Supercharged 1970 Jaguar 420G Automatic

    Posted in Cars on Saturday, 16 June 2018

    Supercharged 420G G-force This Sixties big saloon hides a supercharged secret under the bonnet. This 1970 Jaguar 420G has the same guts as a Nineties X300 XJR. Literally. We look at how Bespoke Auto Developments transplanted the mechanical components, before taking this supercharged conversion on a test-drive. Words & Photography Rob Hawkins.

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    CAR: #Jaguar-420G / #Jaguar / #420G
    Name Greg Bricher
    Age 52
    From Kent Occupation Parts dept manager, motor trade
    First classic AC 2-litre saloon
    Dream classics AC Cobra 427; Bentley 8 Litre sports saloon
    Favourite driving tune Voodoo Chile Jimi Hendrix
    Best trip To Laon Historique, France, in ‘Goldjag’ (the 420G)

    Bricher’s 420G is a regular at the Kempton Steam Museum Classic Show (see www.kemptonsteam.org), here with Jaguar-engined Kougar and a D-type rep.


    Parting with a car after 20 years is not easy, but the engine of my 1951 AC 2-litre had cost me a fortune and it looked as if more was needed. Added to that, the car didn’t exactly gobble up the miles, which put paid to any hopes of ever taking it on trips abroad. So, after a spot of soulsearching, the 2-litre was sold.

    I remember as a youngster being impressed by the sheer scale of our neighbour’s MkX and, some years back, I looked at a few but they were either rusting hulks or beyond my budget. With the AC gone, my thoughts returned to the big Jags. Then my wife Rebecca spotted a car on the web. “I’ve found you one and it looks really nice,” she said. And it did look lovely, although one glance told me that the pictures weren’t taken in England, but a lot further away… in New Zealand. “No way,” I told Rebecca.

    I wouldn’t buy a bicycle without seeing it first, let alone a 45-year-old Jag from the other side of the world. But I was smitten and pretty soon the proud owner of a 420G that I had never seen in the metal, bought from a man I had never met.

    Many people helped me with shipping and getting it registered, including members of the JDC and JDHT, which provided me with a sheet confirming chassis, engine and ’box numbers, plus build date.
    It even found the name of the first owner, a Mrs NP Croft, who took delivery in January ’68 and, it seems, was a keen driver. The car covered 60,000 miles in its first four years.
    When the call came, seven weeks later, that ‘Goldjag’ had arrived in Chatham, I grabbed two cans of fuel and a jump-pack, assuming that the battery would be dead and the tanks empty. “Where’s your trailer?” the foreman asked. “It’ll never start,” he exclaimed, with a laugh. “They wouldn’t when they were new!”

    So, I filled one tank, connected the jump-starter and imagine my delight when Goldjag burst into life on the first push of the button. All it needed was a battery and a balljoint replaced to pass the MoT test.

    We took the car to a number of events and enjoyed the glamour and comfort of the 420G but, a couple of years ago, I decided that it was time for a makeover. Out came the engine for a full rebuild and off came the old paint for a respray in time for Laon Historique in 2015.

    Emerging from the Chunnel, we were met with grim weather and I winced each time a raindrop hit the gleaming paint. It was just as much of a shock to the car, because this was its first-ever outing in the wet.

    Fifty-year-old cars are not famed for their ventilation and, battling through the biblical downpour, the Jaguar began to steam up. It was a balancing act between lowering the driver’s window an inch and keeping the fans on full, but it seemed to be working. Until, that is, we heard what sounded like a loud siren.

    “Must be gendarmes,” said my friend Peter, peering through the back window. “No! It’s coming from the dash,” I replied. Rain was pouring in via the scuttle vent (which I’d brilliantly left open) and, because the airbox drainage pipe couldn’t cope with the deluge, the twin fans became swamped, producing a convincing WW2 air-raid siren.

    Terrified that Goldjag was about to go up in flames, I pulled over and turned off everything electrical. To my relief, all was well apart from the trickle coming out of the lower vent and soaking my left knee. The rest of that weekend went to plan, but my enduring memory will be the comment of a young lad who, watching the 420G motor serenely past, turned to his dad and said: “Papa, la Jaguar… c’est magnifique!”

    “Where’s your trailer?” he asked when I arrived. “It’ll never start. They wouldn’t start when they were new!”

    With friends Katriona and Peter in Laon. ‘Goldjag’ by E28 BMW at Brooklands meet. Wife Rebecca takes photo of Laon line-up. Trim off and XK motor out during overhaul. Gleaming, polished leaper on French tour.
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    John Simister

    William Lyons’ Jaguar Mk10

    Posted in Cars on Saturday, 25 February 2017

    Pride of Lyons. This Jaguar Mk10 was the personal car of Jaguar founder Sir William Lyons. John Simister drives it from the mansion he called home. Words John Simister. Photography Amy Shore. ‘There’s an XK-flavoured edge to its smooth exertions if you look for it’ sir William Lyons’ Jaguar Mk10. William Lyons’ Jaguar Mk10. Driving the founder’s personal limousine.

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    Force-Major-vkontakte accepted the reply from Brett Fraser as an answer.
    The fattest of fat cats, that’s what! The Mk10 was the last of the long strain of large limousine Jaguars that’s big in every department and this now includes value for money. The Mk10 (together with the later facelifted 420G: G standing for Grand ra...
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    Before you buy… #Jaguar #MkX / #420G

    The Mk10/420G is a mixture of good and bad news. The former because this cat provided the mainframe of Daimler limos (such as hearses!) right up until #1992 , meaning parts and panels are in pretty reasonable supply in the trade.

    The bad news is that because these big Jags are not seen as collectible and are of such low value, the vast majority are bodged lash ups and real liabilities under all that metal.

    Rust is the biggest enemy. Start at the floorpan and work upwards! Look for signs of serious rot and poor repairs on the floor, especially by the front seats, all box sections, jacking points, radiator cross-member and suspension pick-up points.

    Despite their size, front wings appear to last well, although sills rot badly (under £20 a side from specialists). Ditto the lower half of the rear wings. Other points to watch are the front and rear aprons, boot lid, door bottoms, fuel tanks and that huge bonnet. The latter should also be checked for poor alignment and fit.

    The XK is well known and generally durable. Chief wear points are noisy timing chains, over-silent tappets (meaning that they have closed up in service and require re-shimming – a head off job), overheating and signs of coolant stains around the head, spelling gasket failure. Most XKs leak oil via a failing rear crank oil seal. Rarely serious but see that oil pressure is a strong 40-45lb on the gauge at 3000rpm with the engine hot.

    E-type-sourced independent rear end uses a number of bushes and these are prone to wear. Brakes are peculiar to this fat cat, being inboard and seize, especially the handbrake. Also fitted to this #Jaguar are an odd wheel and tyre size (205 x 14) that are becoming harder to source. Watch for van tyres fitted: these are okay for the car’s weight but unsuitable for very high speed cruising.
    ‏ — with Aspi-Rant and Brett Fraser
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    Prices #Jaguar #Mk10 and #420G

    This is the best bit. Because the big cat #Mk10 is so neglected and overlooked compared to the more fashionable Mk2 and XJ6 ranges, prices are almost a joke. Even the best-kept examples (and this includes the 420Gs) will find it hard to bust the £15,000 barrier while half this will fund an entirely decent example. That said we have seen some time warp cars approach the 20k barrier recently.

    There again just you try finding a compatible #Mk2 for that sort of cash! If anything the earlier Mk10s are valued slightly higher than the brasher 420G. As ever, it’s best to buy the best car that you can afford because many of these lovely limos have been run and restored on the cheap. Quality counts here as restos will be #Jaguar-E-type dear.


    Jaguar’s mantra of Grace Pace and Space is never more apt. Perhaps this cat’s image is too flash for some, but you can’t knock the Mk10 for presence and metal for your money. It’s an XJ6 and Rolls-Royce rolled into one – all for the price of a new Fiesta! Buy now before others realise what they are missing…
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    Driving #Jaguar #Mk10 and #420G ( Jaguar #Mark-X )

    At around two tons and the size of a Ford Transit van, the #Mk10 is no #E-type to push around. You need a lot of road space when driving this big cat hard.

    The Mk10 is best as a superb cruiser and it can match an #XJ6 and even a Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow but at much less cost. Certainly a good one is as comfortable and cosseting and with similar refinement levels. Even with those brawny E-type engines employed, performance from this big battle cruiser is nothing spectacular (although the Daimler V8 development ones were reputed to have been astonishingly quick…) but more than adequate for modern motoring.
    Not so pleasing is the Mk10’s massive thirst, due to those overworked #XK engines.

    At best expect little more than 16mpg and probably much worse if age and mileage have taken their toll on the engine and fuel system. Unlike so many more modern Jags, you can’t really quibble over the cabin space in a Mk10. There’s acres of well appointed room to stretch out in genuine luxury and the boot is well sized too – for a Jag at least!

    On a purely practical note, can you drive a car so big and wide where you live (taking one down a rural road is an adventure) and what about parking and storage outside the average semi?
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