When it comes to a classic British car, the Jaguar brand immediately comes to mind. And there is nothing to be surprised at, because this English company, founded back in the 1920s, perfectly embodies the national style. You can just look at the design of Jaguar cars and it will immediately become clear what is going on. Cars amazes their article, greatness, some coolness, but at the same time insolence and temperament.
True, at the present time the cult brand is going through hard times, as a result, Ford was even forced to sell the brand to Indians from Tata Motors. True, despite such fame, in the UK itself, it was not the first automaker in the country’s history. But it all started with a buggy for motorcycles.
The history of the company takes its cue from 1922, when two Englishmen, William Lyons and William Walmsley founded the company Swallow Sidecars. She was engaged in making wheelchairs for motorcycles. At the same time the production was clearly not artisanal, since among the customers there were such “bison” as the Italian Fiat, as well as Swift, Austinm Morris and Wolseley. At the same time, the partners noted that the Swallow Sidecars stroller were quite stylish, truly British. This product is designed for intellectuals, respectively, and it cost not cheap.
Orders were growing every year, and in 1931 the company moved from the seaside Blackpool in the north of England to a much more industrial Coventry. At the new location, the company immediately increased its production facilities, which made it possible to increase the volumes. Grew up and staff. And one of the founders of the company, William Lyons, found the means to start designing his own car.
In 1931, the light saw a car SS I, who became the first-born Swallow Sidecars. This modification was produced in two variations – with 16 and 20 horsepower. The model was produced until 1936. And since 1932 the company began to develop a cut-down model, which later became known as SS II. This model tried to cover the segment of less well-off customers, and therefore was cut down on the functionality. True, both models were still quite expensive.
In the early 1940s, the Second World War raged, the Swallow Sidecars plants switched to the production of military equipment. Work on the release of cars was resumed only in 1948. However, now the company has received another name – Jaguar. The founders decided to give her the name of a graceful beast, more than others stood out among the relatives. So the company’s cars had to match this image.
In the late 1940s, Jaguar began to create a new, two-cylinder engine for its cars. That development was considered revolutionary, because it was this company that was the first to introduce two and four-cylinder engines into its production cars. And in 1948 the company introduced a new model in Jaguar XK at the automobile exhibition in London. This car has become a real sensation, thanks to its exquisite exterior appearance and engine. At that time, the power of 105 horsepower seemed beyond the reach of anything. The very same cars Jaguar XK120 could accelerate to a phenomenal 120 kilometers per hour. These cars have become the same synonym for speed and luxury, which today are considered Ferrari. Today, Jaguar is as fast and expensive as it was then, but it has become even more stately.
And in the early 1950’s, the company drew attention to motor sport. It became clear that the best advertising is the victory of the car in prestigious races or, at least participation in them. In 1951, a model Jaguar C-Type appeared, in which the body was made with improved aerodynamics. This allowed the company to win its first victory in the race. In that year Jaguar was defeated and the legendary 24 hours of Le Mans. And in 1954 the Jaguar XK140 cabriolet appeared, which became popular.
In the same year, the model Jaguar D-Type begins to be manufactured. In all, only 88 such vehicles were produced.Today it is a pride for collectors, how much each copy costs – it’s hard to imagine. And in the late 1950s another new product was introduced, the Jaguar MK II. It was not only traditionally fast, but also distinguished by increased reliability. It is no accident that this car served the British police for a long time.
One model replaced the other, while older machines did not disappear, but found their place in the garages of true car fans. After all, some even then realized how valuable the future will be the creations of Jaguar.
An important event in the life of the brand occurred in 1966, when it became part of the British Motor Company holding. And two years later, Leyland was added to it, giving the name to the British Leyland Motor Corporation. But this merger had little impact on the policy of the company Jaguar. She herself was responsible for both her model lineup and her future strategy.
Also in her submission was another English company, Daimler. Its development has been actively used in Jaguar. Daimler itself began to gradually withdraw from the market. Most likely the holding company realized that owning two competing brands is a luxury. Nevertheless, some Daimler models were produced until the 1990s.
And in 1988 appeared the legendary car Jaguar XJ220, which developed speed up to 220 miles per hour. He became the fastest mass-produced model, retaining such an honorary title until 1994. The company Jaguar in many ways helped to appear in the US fashion for European luxury cars. It is no coincidence that the brand – the pride of England was bought in 1989 by Ford. Only in 20 years, Americans will get rid of the once glorious, and now unprofitable asset.
In many ways, the popularity of the Jaguar brand is not only related to the world of cars itself. Such cars are real stars of politics and show business. Even in the English parliament, most politicians use cars of this particular brand. Yes, and British premieres ride on the black “Jaguar”, it applies to both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. So politicians give the brand additional advertising, but not only they differ.
Cars of this brand are very popular with actors and musicians. One of the main fans of the Jaguar brand is the English singer Sting. He dreamed of owning such a machine, even when he was just a schoolteacher. But now the musician can afford to have several such thoroughbred “horses” in the garage at once. Naturally, the favorites appear in the clips of Sting, because they are the very embodiment of grace. Jaguar has many other dedicated star fans. This is Jack Nicholson, Samuel El Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, Humphrey Bogart. You can only dream about such advertising!
Yes, and among the players of the football Premier League of England brand is very popular. This car was in the former star of the national team, Michael Owen. From the stars the royal people try to keep up. And to explain it easily – Jaguar was originally created for the most-most. At one time on such machines drove the Danish Prince George, Queen Elizabeth II, Princess of Monaco Grace Kelly. And again – great advertising for luxury cars.
Apparently, the company’s history does not have shocks or deep crises, interesting breakthroughs. But this development can be considered typically English. Jaguar itself was always considered closed, but it always only benefited its image. At present, crises in the world economy have sharply reduced interest in luxury goods. This only exacerbated the unenviable position of Jaguar. The company, now in debt, now belongs to the Indians.
True, the deal turned out to be rather strange, because Tata Motors is a large manufacturer of cheap cars. Why did she need an unprofitable, and even alien to her spirit company? Indians themselves insist that they will do everything possible to keep the famous brand and straighten out its finances. After all, such names, the property of the world of cars, should not be scattered.But in Russia, sales of an elite car only grow from year to year.