Auctions and Brokerage
Robert Wood, Allentown, Pennsylvania (acquired by 1963)Gary Ford, Pipersville, Pennsylvania (acquired from the above circa 1998)Brian Classic, Cheshire, UK (acquired from the above circa 2004)John Hewitt Murphy, Santa Fe, New Mexico (acquired from the above in 2004)Private Collection, Mexico (acquired in 2012)Current Owner (acquired from the above)
Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, Amelia Island, Florida, 2002 (First in Class)Radnor Hunt Concours d’Elegance, Malvern, Pennsylvania, 2005 (Class Award)JCNA National Concours d’Elegance, 2007 (Prewar Class Champion)Santa Fe Concorso, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2010 (First in Class)Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®, Pebble Beach, California, 2015 (First in Class)
In late 1935, William Lyons’ SS Cars Ltd. introduced the Jaguar, a new model equipped with a powerful 2 1/2-litre six-cylinder engine tuned by Harry Weslake. This engine was soon implemented across the company’s model line, and in the SS 100 – a beautiful, two-seat sports car – it allowed for a top speed approaching 100 mph.
Although just 198 examples were built through 1938, the original 2 1/2-litre SS 100 model found tremendous success in competition, serving as a cornerstone of Jaguar’s rich motor sport legacy. This breathtaking example perfectly illustrates the qualities of aesthetic beauty and thoroughbred performance that have made this prewar Jaguar model so sought-after among collectors. According to the Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust, chassis 49026 was completed on December 24, 1937, finished in black paint with gray trim. Retailed through Henley’s Limited of London, the car passed into unknown ownership, though it was later registered as “REL 525.” Exported to the US by the early 1960s, Robert Wood of Allentown, Pennsylvania, purchased the SS 100 from one of his fellow students at Cornell University. Following his graduation, Mr. Wood reportedly restored the Jaguar and retained it for approximately 30 years.
In the late 1990s, the SS 100 was sold to Gary Ford, who undertook some cosmetic refurbishment and then presented the car at the 2002 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, winning First in Class. Acquired a couple of years later by well-known British car expert Brian Classic, the Jaguar was sold in 2004 to John Hewitt Murphy of Santa Fe. Mr. Murphy undertook further restoration measures, commissioning a reupholstering of the seats and door panels, and a complete detailing of the engine compartment. This work contributed to further accolades at regional events, including class wins at the 2005 Radnor Hunt Concours d’Elegance and the 2010 Santa Fe Concorso, and Prewar Class Champion at the 2007 JCNA National Concours. In 2012, the Jaguar was sold to a discerning private collector, and he exhibited the car at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance® in August 2015, winning First in Class.
Finished in dark green with brown leather upholstery, and still presenting beautifully with its Brooklands windscreens and painted wire wheels, this SS 100 is a genuine example of an important prewar Jaguar model. The consignor reports that the car retains its original 2 1/2-litre engine and the sale is accompanied by an original 1937 owner’s manual, weather equipment, and a tool kit. One of only 198 built, this beautifully maintained SS 100 2 1/2 Litre is eligible for many of the finest international events, from prestigious concours d’elegance to rallies such as the Mille Miglia and the Colorado Grand. Those with an appreciation of fine prewar automobiles should not miss this rare opportunity to acquire a truly exceptional example of the first great Jaguar sports car.