Desirable and Genuine 3.5 Litre SS100 with Matching Numbers. Comprehensively restored and Beautifully Presented. Well Suited for Premier Rallies and Events Around the Globe.
1939 Jaguar SS100
s/n 39078, engine no. M800E
Red with Tan Leather Interior
Widely considered among the most quintessential British motorcars, the elegant and sporting SS100 was the product of fledgling Jaguar, known then as the Swallow Sidecar Company. Regarded as the first Jaguar sports car, the name SS, followed first by 90 and then by 100, was the promise of achievable top speeds. Although the Jaguar name would not be officially adopted until 1935, the SS 90 and 100 designation would remain as Jaguar established themselves as one of the premier constructors of fine cars. Distinctively produced and specially crafted, the first series 2.5 liter powered cars were capable performers, besting top marques such as Bentley and Alvis. Sales were brisk for the first series cars resulting in 198 built. In 1938, the engine was enlarged to 3.5 liters, putting out 125 bhp. The 3.5 series, coupled with a 4-speed gearbox - three with synchromesh, and Girling brakes, offered performance and durability that was quite remarkable for the times.
Rare in number, just 116 of the 3.5 liter SS100 were built, most of which remained in the UK. Conceived as one of the earliest refined and manageable sports cars, the SS 100 evolved to deliver impressive performance coupled with the grace and beauty of far higher priced European offerings. Consistently sought after for the same reasons that drove their popularity when new, the SS 100 delivers all the charm and performance of a refined 1930s era motorcar while offering rarity in number and elegant coachbuilt beauty.
This beautifully presented example is a matching numbers, 3.5 liter SS 100. According to the owner, a comprehensive restoration was completed in 2005, and the cosmetic and mechanical condition have been properly maintained by the current owner since 2009. During the restoration, the exterior color was changed to the stunning red, accented with tan leather interior and impressive wire wheels.
Today the car makes a very strong visual impression, with very smooth and glossy paint showing only minor areas where the restoration has mellowed. Handcrafted panels are properly finished with some minor variations in fit, though the paint work and body prep appear to have been done to very high standards. The hood louvers are very straight and properly aligned with crisp and properly tailored fender tips, two features often not properly executed in older restorations. Chrome is very good throughout, including the impressive large headlamps, angled windscreen, grille shell, and leaping Jaguar mascot. The gorgeous front fender line has excellent rhythm to the delicate curvature from the peak of the front wheel, to the integrated running boards, and quick rise to the shortened rear. Even in this iteration, one can see the hunkered down Jaguar stance delivered in the long hood/short deck configuration that would mark the classic proportions of all Jaguar sports cars for decades to come. The glass and lenses are in excellent condition as well as the convertible top and top boot. The purposeful and sporting wire wheels are treated to excellent polish and plated dual eared knockoffs, shod with period correct Dunlop Gold Seal tires and twin spare. The overall cosmetic impression of the car includes several standout touches such as proper grille and headlamp stone guards, central spot lamp, Desmo side view mirrors, and correctly fitted leather spare tire straps. Of particular note, is the pivoting windscreen, which can be dropped forward, allowing for more exhilarating driving, but still offering occupant protection via the additional smaller glass sport-shields.
The interior presentation is consistent with the exterior restoration quality offering very nicely fitted tan leather seats and door panels. Showing some light relaxing to the driver’s seatback, the remaining interior materials are taut and properly stitched, with correct perimeter piping. Modern seatbelts have been fitted for safety. The remaining interior has been carpeted with matching color low pile carpeting, trimmed with correct perimeter beading and a set of floor mats which slightly vary in color. The engine turned dashboard is in excellent condition sporting clear and vivid ivory dial faces with crisp nomenclature featuring the SS logo. Various accompanying brightwork and dash switches have very handsome finishes overall, accented by a gloss black steering wheel.
Opening the traditional center hinged hood, the diligently executed restoration further reveals correct finishes and details reflective of cosmetic and mechanical authenticity. The engine has been properly detailed and cared for including attention to plated cosmetics, painted components, braided stainless steel hoses, properly spiraled copper lines, and polished aluminum features. Various mechanical components are very clean throughout including the engine turned firewall. Even the typically faded porcelain finish on the exhaust headers still retains a high gloss finish, indicative of only light mechanical use since the restoration was completed.
The underside of the car remains clean and nicely maintained further reflecting the comprehensive restoration performed on the car. Even on close inspection, mechanical components reveal accurate hardware, correctly fitted linkages, correct mounting bracketry, and correctly painted frame and suspension components.
Entering the car, one immediately appreciates the spaciousness of the cockpit, a welcome surprise for larger occupants, offering greater comfort not only upon entry but while at the wheel. The dipping door line, creating a very open feel to the cockpit. Engaging the vintage starting procedure – a few switches and levers set right, the car turns over and gradually warms to a smooth idle as further adjustments are made to the fuel mixture. With the top down, visibility and driving ease are immediately evident as the car pulls smoothly away. The gears are easily engaged, owing to the synchromesh in all but first gear. Braking is consistent with expectations of the period, in keeping with the power and performance delivered by the 3.5 liter engine. The car tracks well on the road even at higher speeds, with good manners exhibiting generally predictable behaviors one might expect from a sporting and delightful pre-war sports car of this era. With the top down and suitable driving gear, one can easily alight to the highway or engage charming side roads, anticipating vintage motoring joy. The car comes with side curtains, and an owner’s manual.
This is an excellent opportunity to acquire a beautifully restored 3.5 liter Jaguar SS 100 with excellent finishes and matching numbers engine. Rare in number and beautifully designed, the Jaguar that started it all delivers a legendary driving experience, sure to delight anyone wishing to spiritedly motor back in time.
Please note that the title, side curtains, and owner’s manual are in transit.
The above vehicle information is complete and accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time it is posted to this website. Corrections or additional information is always appreciated. All advertised prices exclude government fees and taxes, any finance charges, any dealer document preparation charge, and any emission testing charge. Vehicles are subject to prior sale. All advertised to be true but not guaranteed. We assume no liability for errors or omissions.
Fantasy Junction • 510-653-7555 • 1145 Park Ave, Emeryville, CA 94608