Obscure Muscle from the Past: The Jensen Interceptor

Here is another one of my curve-ball postings about an Obscure Muscle Car you may have never though was a Muscle Car. I’m here to try and convince you that it is. Let’s find out if the Jensen Interceptor is indeed an Obscure Muscle Car While it could be argued that the featured car is actually more of a grand touring car in the tradition of a Jaguar, I will submit evidence that it is more of a gentleman’s muscle car because of one simple feature: the engine. Yes, what we have here in a fast, powerful, and luxurious coupe that happens to be built in the UK, with a big old Chrysler 383 or 440. The Jensen Interceptor was built in the United Kingdom by Jensen Motors between 1966 and 1976. The Interceptor name had been used previously by Jensen for an earlier car made between 1950 and 1957. The design of the Interceptor was designed by an outside firm, Carrozzeria Touring of Italy, rather than the in-house staff. The early bodies were Italian-built, by Vignale, before production by Jensen themselves began at their facility. The engine was a Chrysler 383 c.i. V-8, with optional manual or TorqueFlite automatic transmissions driving the rear wheels. Power from the 383 was initially 325 horsepower. Zero to sixty took 7.1 seconds – an excellent time for 1966 – with a 135 mph top speed. The Birmingham factory produced about 600 of these Interceptors per year. Jensen offered the larger 440 in late 1971, with a traditional 4 bbl. carburetor. The SP (Six-Pack) model of 1971–73 offered 3×2-bbl carburetors; only 232 were built and had the distinction of being the most powerful car ever to have been made by Jensen 390 HP. The Mark II was announced in October 1969, revised frontal styling and vented disc brakes. The Mark III of 1971 had revised seats, fully-cast alloy wheels plus some other improvements. The Mark III was divided to G-, H- and J-series, depending on the production years. The “J” version of Interceptor III was the most luxurious Jensen built. The Interceptor was briefly re-introduced in the 1980s as the Series 4 (S4), as a low-volume ’specialist’ motor car in much the same way Bristol continue to market and manufacture their cars. Though the body remained essentially the same, a newer, so called ‘cleaner’, engine was used (the Chrysler 360) and the interior slightly re-designed with the addition of ’sports’ front seats as opposed to the armchair style of the earlier models. Read the rest of this posting at CarDomain.com, and be sure to read some of the readers comments to see how they felt. And while you’re at it, take a look at my latest CarDomain Obscure Muscle Car postings.

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