We’ve been keeping this one quiet for a little while, but we’ve recently acquired something very special – the holy grail of Mk2 Jaguars. A genuine, 3.8 ‘Coombs’.
This is one of only 33 believed ever built and recently certified for us by Ken Bell, former workshop manager of Coombs who actually built this very car. Coombs of Guildford were a leading race team in the 60’s preparing and campaigning Mk2 Jaguars with huge success, John Coombs himself piloted the most successful cars from any racing stable at the time. To understand what a Coombs car is, you have to understand the special engineering carried out to the converted cars, with many options available. This car was given the full monte, 9:1 compression pistons, 2” HD8 SU carburettors, special induction manifold, Barwell gas flowed and ported head specially for coombs, D-type camshafts, larger inlet valves, modified distributor, special straight through competition exhaust system centre exit, lead-bronze main and big end bearings, lightened flywheel, high ratio steering box, koni shock absorbers, modified suspension including stiffer anti-roll bar / stiffer coil springs to front / heavy duty leaf springs to rear, extra wide track chrome Dunlop wire wheels, E type all synchromesh gearbox with Laycock de Normandville overdrive, Power-Lok 3.73 ratio rear axle, front and rear arches modified by Coombs to accommodate wide track wheels, E type wood rim steering wheel, wooden gear lever knob, push button radio with twin speakers / balance control and roof aerial, reclining seats, heated rear window, foglamp covers and ‘Sundym’ tinted glass.
This is a very capable car even today, and in period this was a race car for the road, a supercar of its time and faster than a 3.8 E type.
This example has just 1 former keeper, a well-known musician from the sixties, and the most incredible provenance. This car with its special order black trim over opalescent silver grey paintwork, and almost all options chosen, was deemed lost – the Coombs register actually compiled by Ken Bell had this cars whereabouts marked as unknown / perhaps lost. However this was as the owner was very discreet, didn’t publicly flaunt his car and therefore it floated under the radar for 51 years. Cars like this come once in a lifetime if lucky enough, with irrefutable provenance and ownership, from Coombs factory notes on the commissioning of the car, log book showing number of former keepers – ‘none’,down to the build sheet still in its 3 box file thick history.
Of the lowly number of cars built, around 30-35 cars total, quite a few have been lost, raced, crashed, taken apart etc, and the ones that have survived are often in different configuration to how they were built. Not this car, she carries all of her original spec, right down to the finest detail, her vented bonnet the only alteration. (we have the original bonnet also). Her only discerning owner maintained her so sympathetically and she has only covered just over 70k miles. This has to be the most original, highest spec, lowest ownership GENUINE Coombs MK2 in existence?
A vehicle of serious historic importance, so rare with only twenty something examples left – this recently discovered treasure was thought to be lost forever. Find another.
Hilton and Moss are very proud to be the new custodians of such a significant piece of motoring history, be sure to see us with the car at all of the important historic vehicle events next year.
For more pictures of the car, please see here