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*Please note that the braking system will require servicing prior to use. Please note that this car is titled by its engine number. Please also note that the first character of the chassis number is a letter S and not the number 5 as printed in the catalogue.
The Jaguar Mark I
By the mid-1950s Jaguar had three separate well-defined markets. The C-Type and D-Type competition cars dominated Le Mans racing, the XK120 and XK140 roadsters and coupes were elegant and exciting road cars, and the exclusive Mark VII and Mark VIII sedans offered high-speed grand touring in luxury.
Jaguar’s Managing Director William Lyons had his eye on the smaller luxury market and the result was Jaguar’s first monocoque sedan, the Mark I. First offered in 1955 with a 112 bhp, 2.4-litre DOHC engine, independent front suspension, and rear fender skirts, it was handsome with a plush walnut and leather interior.
But when the 210 bhp, 3.4-litre engine from the XK140 was fitted in 1957, along with disc brakes and wire wheels, the Mark I earned the leaping cat on its hood. Top speed rose to 120 mph and optional overdrive offered 100 mph cruising. The Mark I immediately dominated sedan racing, and when the redesigned Mark II was introduced in 1959 with a 3.8-litre option, it would be the fastest production sedan in the world.
This 1959 3.4-litre Mark I Jaguar is a superb example of this desirable model. An original black-on-black car with wire wheels and four-speed gearbox with overdrive, the Jaguar was sold new in Portland, Oregon, and has remained there for 54 years. The Mark I has been in the same family since 1962 and garaged through the entire ownership. It is the pride and joy of the consignor, who learned to drive it when he was 15. Upon his father’s death in 1981, the car was transferred to a climate-controlled garage for the next 18 years, until his mother willed it to him, with the request that he show it in honor of his father.
To fulfill this request, the consignor, a longtime enthusiast who owns a restoration shop, decided to restore the car, a job that would take him 10 years and hundreds of hours of work. The Jaguar, which has never been damaged, was completely dismantled during the restoration process. The engine and transmission were rebuilt, and new wire wheels were fitted. Inside, the walnut trim was refinished and new wool carpet installed. This Jaguar still has its original leather seats, door panels, and headliner; and when it was repainted, the original black paint on the doorjambs was so good that it was retained.
Once completed, the consignor showed the Jaguar locally for 10 years and received numerous trophies and awards, which are included in the sale. Also accompanying the sale of the car is the original tool kit; original manuals and service books; original spare wire wheel, jack, and lead hammer for the knock-off wheels; and a complete photographic record of the restoration. A gorgeous example of a landmark model that has been driven less than 2,000 miles since the rebuild, this 50-plus-year, single-family ownership Jaguar Mark I is sure to continue its role as a beloved showpiece under its next fortunate owner.