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Lot Number
43
1934 SS I Saloon
Scottsdale Auction

ESTIMATE: $160,000 - $190,000
CHASSIS NO: 248162
• Attractive 1930s styling and lines
• Interesting piece of Jaguar history
• Only 7 known survivors

2663 cc OHV inline six-cylinder engine with single RAG AII carburetor, 70 HP, four-speed gearbox with synchromesh engagement in the top three gears, live axle, independent front and solid axle rear suspension with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes; wheelbase: 119”


Jaguar has always been a leader in the world of sports cars with their first being the SS1 that was built from 1931 through 1936. These elegant cars were a continued development of William Lyons - Swallow coach built bodies that had been used on various chassis throughout the late 1920s. So popular were Swallow’s bodies that they were used on such marques as Morris, Fiat, Austin, and Standard. In 1931, Standard commissioned a chassis that was specifically built for a Swallow body and the union between these two companies would become known as Standard Swallow; abbreviated simply as “SS.” In 1933, SS Cars Ltd. was officially established and offered a variety of chassis and body configurations. In 1934, the SS1 became more and more popular with the introduction of the “four light” saloon body, a name derived from the four side windows on the car. The SS1 was well-received for its artistically sleek style, as well as its reasonable price. These cars eventually became the first to carry the “Jaguar” name, though not yet as a marque as the name wouldn’t change until after World War II. The SS1 was recognized for its apparent value-for-money and its eye-catching appearance rather than its performance. Richard Taylor of British Motors of New York, for example, offered the SS1 tourer for sale in 1935 at a price of just $2,250.

Offered here to the collector of historic British cars is a rare SS1 in outstanding condition. Formerly owned by UK racing enthusiast Gavin Henderson, this particular SS1 comes equipped with a few modern amenities such as an iPhone USB port and a modern radio. Pride of ownership shines through in the well-maintained primrose yellow paint accented by large red wire spoked wheels. The interior upholstery is in excellent condition, including the all original leather back seat. Chrome gauges and stylish well-kept brightwork add the finishing touches of elegance to this car. Recent restoration work includes a new head gasket installed by JD Classics, a top-notch restoration firm based out of the UK specializing in Aston Martin, Jaguar, Ferrari, and Porsche. Other features offered in this SS1 include a wooden chassis, articulating turn indicators, leather seats with built in rear armrests, and beautiful sunburst leather paneling on the inside of the suicide doors. This vehicle is powered by a 2.7-litre overhead-valve inline six-cylinder engine producing 70 horsepower. Because of a parts shortage at the factory, only 17 tourers were built at the end of 1935. These cars were adapted to fit the 1936 grille and outfitted with a special front enamel badge carrying an SS logo. Of these 17, only 7 are known to remain in existence today. This 1936 SS1 brings together all the stylish elements of the era. Looking at any SS1 demonstrates just how a combination of a low roof, long hood, and short trunk add a certain mysterious appeal to any car. The rich and sultry interior adorned with art-deco designs and gleaming chrome all hint to the high-quality restoration work done on this car. In addition to mechanical honesty, this SS1 delivers a dashing dose of style that, say, a Fiat or Austin of the era cannot.

The SS1 Jaguar is always a welcome sight at any concours show and this one could stand out in a field with the best. Its attractive colors, coupled with its beautiful interior, makes for a car that’s a pleasure to look at and fun to drive. The quality, fit, and finish of this SS1 holds up even under the closest inspection. With its wooden chassis, the SS1 definitely looks the part of an elegant coach-built saloon. There is a sense that you have arrived when you are behind the wheel of an SS1. And bearing in mind that the car also denoted the onset of the company that built it on a bigger stage, that feeling seems just about right when driving this car. Seldom seen, with fantastic styling and spirited Jaguar capabilities, this SS1 is a welcome addition for any garage.

1934 SS I Saloon
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