Wednesday 19th June 2019,

Jaguar S type 1963 – 1968

The only criticisms leveled at the MK II were that it had insufficient boot-space for a family car and was quite wild through fast corners. The MK II was a little inclined to lift a wheel amid a cloud of tyre smoke if a tight corner was attempted at very high speed. Most people found it an exhilarating experience but Jaguar took notice and came up with the S type in 1963.

It was probably expected to replace the MK II but if that was the expectation, it failed. The Jaguar MK X had a shapely rear and a big boot so that tail was minaturised and grafted onto a MK II body shell. Then the front was face-lifted, hooding the headlights. Next was a transplant of the independent rear suspension from the MK X and E type. Apart from the IRS the car was mechanically identical to the MK II.

The interior was also `minature MK X` in it`s finish level. First impressions were ambiguous. Some thought it was a “dog`s breakfast” but the majority liked it. The emergency services, always a good customer for Jaguar, replaced their MK IIs immediately. The police and fire service needed boot space so they were happy with the `S type`.

The car sold well but it lacked the presence of the MK X which it seemed to be imitating. It also lacked the `hairy` persona of the MK II. It is a fair observation that 3.8 MK IIs had successfully competed in saloon car racing from 1959 whereas the `S type` was not seen as a car with racing potential. In fact a well-driven Jaguar MK II was always quicker on the road because of the `S type`s extra weight.

Another strange thing was the fitting of twin 7 gallon fuel tanks when a 12 gallon single tank would have done the job. Perhaps it was because the S type was less economical than the MK II. The car was more refined than the MK II in terms of noise and sensation which probably explained why MK II production continued until 1967. The following year the S type was gone, replaced by another face-lift… the 420.

When compared, the MK II is much more of a timeless classic than the S-type. History has ajudged the MK II to be better blessed with performance and charisma.

Although not the best video, it’s the only usable one we found. If you know of a better one, be sure to post it into comments below.

Jaguar S type 1963-1968 Specifications
Body Type5 seater 4 door saloon
Engine PlacementFront
Drive TypeRear wheel drive
Cargo Volume3 boddies would get in easily
Engine3.4 Jaguar XK DOHC 12V Hemispherical
Cylindersstraight 6
Displacement3442 cc210 cui
Power157 Kw210 bhp5500 RPM
Torque292 Nm215 ft. lb2500 RPM
Power/weight133 bhp/t
Top Speed190 km/h118 mph
Acceleration0-100 km/h - 0-60 mph9.3 s
Fuel consumptionl/100 kmImperial mpg
Gearbox4 speed manual3 speed automatic
Weight1575 kg3472 lb
Engine3.8 Jaguar XK DOHC 12V Hemispherical
Cylindersstraight 6
Displacement3781 cc230.7 cui
Power164 Kw220 bhp5500 RPM
Torque325 Nm240 ft. lb3000 RPM
Power/weight140 bhp/t
Top Speed195 km/h121 mph
Acceleration0-100 km/h - 0-60 mph8.6 s
Fuel consumptionl/100 kmImperial mpg
Gearbox4 speed manual3 speed automatic
Weight1575 kg3472 lb
GD Star Rating
Jaguar S type 1963 - 1968, 10.0 out of 10 based on 3 ratings
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About Bev Roberts

Speed, the smell of hot oil, the roar of a straight-through exhaust and the scream of an engine at max revolutions. They have all been a large part of my life for almost 50 years. It is time to share my experiences with you, dear reader. Do you want to know more? Read on through my `Full Bio` and many articles.

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I was born in Hereford UK in 1948 and brought up in Gloucester UK. I played Rugby football internationally as a schoolboy. At the age of 17, a new and wet driving license in my paw, I entered motor racing. I was supported and financed by my parents and so my journey began.

In 1965 I bought a 1293cc Mini-Cooper `S` and campaigned it for a season. Having quickly made some good friends in the racing fraternity, several interesting opportunities came my way. I joined a sports-car team and raced in the Le Mans 24 hours in 1968 and 1969 in a Lola T70. Mechanical failure defeated both efforts. During that period I owned and raced a `D type` Jaguar and an AC Cobra. In those days cars like that were available and not too expensive, now they reside in museums and private collections. I had a chain of interesting cars through my youth including Jaguars, Minis, Mustangs and Lotus-Cortinas.

As a young driver I had my share of accidents too. Often the car would only be worth scrap-metal value by the time I got it home! I worked for an Aston-Martin/Jaguar dealership for a while, which enhanced my experience and gave me the opportunity to sample some very exotic machines, Ferrari, Facel-Vega, Iso and Maserati to recall a few of them.

At the end of 1969 I moved to South Africa to work on my uncle`s farm but the S.A. government had other ideas and drafted me into the army. After five years had passed I was thanked and released from the service. While I was there I bought a beige Cadillac Eldorado, previously the property of Marilyn Monroe. While I was away on a patrol my girlfriend had it re-sprayed pink! I was unimpressed by both the joke and the bill for the work!

When I returned to UK in 1974 I left it behind. On my return I found that the once-mighty British motor industry was in decline and was headed for oblivion. Motor racing was now very expensive so I turned to commercial transport. Driving large trucks gave me freedom and a chance to see some of the world. I don`t remember ever making a career choice but for the next thirty years a truck was my home. For about ten years in that period I owned two trucks of my own.

I also owned a famous MGB-GT, known as `Lucky`. If you`d like to read `The Story of Lucky` there is an article in Inopian`s archive. I finally retired, due to ill-health, in 2008. Since I had varied knowledge and many experiences on our subject I decided to share the stories of the cars I enjoyed (and hated) with the new generation.

Enjoy Inopian… it is constructed and written for you.

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