Magazine Cover - Classic Cars For Sale - 1000s of Classic Car Reviews, How To Service & Maintenance Guides

WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?

Published: 8th May 2014 - 0 Comments - Be the first, contribute now!

WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
WHAT’S YOUR BEEF?
The latest issue of Classic Cars For Sale is on sale now - Pick up your copy from all good newsagents including WHSmith or click here to subscribe now

Subscribe to Classic Motoring Magazine and save over 20%

Subscribe NOW

Available at all good newsagents including WHSmith

Whats Your Beef

JENSEN-HEALEY

LOGICAL BUT LACKING

This is the car that Healey dreamed would replace his old brawny sportster and while it was in tune with 1970’s motoring, it missed the mark by miles due to its mundane Spitfire-on-steroids styling, far too soft nature and woeful build and subsequent reliability issues – not least that infamous rough and underdeveloped Lotus engine it was saddled with. The Mk2 version righted most of the wrongs and the hatchback GT is all that a revamped MGB GT should be, but the car never caught on and remains absurdly inexpensive considering its name, pedigree and rarity. Spares and support is improving, so now’s a good time to consider one.


AUSTIN-HEALEY


CHEST BEATER

This is the car that started it all and few can match this 60 something for all round brawn and style. The early 100/4 is the more thoroughbred but the 100/6, and the subsequent 3000, are more plentiful and cheaper. Lustier if no quicker than the 100/4 plus the handling isn’t so agile thanks to the extra weight up front and all are a bit lorry like to drive to be fair, which some might well argue is part of the charm. Overdoses on style and 50’s character as you’d expect and there’s terrific club and specialist support. Buy now as prices are rocketing for good examples.

TVR S


TVR’S MGR?

In a way, this really good car emulates the MGR in concept because originally this TVR was also around in the 1970s, albeit better known as the M Series before it was displaced by the wedgy Tasmin range. The M was resurrected in the 1990s as the S, albeit based on the Tasmin platform. Available in Ford V6 and Rover V8 guises, it is a good, honest yet overlooked sports car combining those classic M Series’ looks with modern running gear. Not as fast or he-man as a later Chimaera but, dare we suggest, classier and better value for money.

JAGUAR XJ-S


CAN’T SHAKE ITS IMAGE

In truth, the XJ-S is not – and never has been – a sports car but a GT and in its day the best in the world. However, even this accolade fails to give the Jag classic status it surely deserves? Based on the XJ6, it handles and rides supremely well (better than most E-types) and refinement is second to none. There’s no shortage of speed either, even from the sensible straight six examples, which, like the V12, have that sense of occasion you always get with any Jaguar. The car’s reputation (cured by the mid 1980s) keeps interest and values low which is a double-edged sword for restoration projects.

JAGUAR XK


ALMOST AN F-TYPE

If the XK8 is good, then you should try the replacement XK. Launched in 2006 you can pick one up for £14,000 on the forecourts and perhaps £11,000 at auction. E-type in appearance, and that includes the iconic side opening hatch on the coupé, you can have one in 4.2 guise or 5-litres which means 300bhp minimum, over 503bhp with the supercharged XKR and an incredible 542bhp with the flagship XKR-S! If you can’t afford a decent E-type then you’d do well to look at this hugely credible incarnation from the ‘Noughties’.

TRIUMPH TR5/6


BRAWN OVER BRAINS?

These six-cylinder TRs for many represent the last of the real Triumph sportsters as the TR7 is nothing more than a poor swansong to a fine range of sports cars, neatly forgetting that the TR7 range comfortably outsold them! There’s a touch of the old hiary Healey about the TR5 and the later TR6 where power corrupted the chassis, ensuring that a fast drive became a hard-riding challenge. And they sure shake, rattle and roll far more than a TR8. What you get with the earlier TR though, are classic looks and character by the bucket load that will never go out of fashion. That’s why there’s never ending price rises for the good ones (bear in mind that many aren’t), especially the rarer TR5PI.

TVR TASMIN/350 & 390


POWER DRESSED TO KILL

If you took a hacksaw to a Lotus Eclat (and some say that’s the best thing to do) and chopped its head off you’d end up with something not unlike the TVR Tasmin, which is not surprising as the same bloke designed both! An ex-Lotus chassis expert sorted out the underpinnings as well, so there’s few complaints how the Tasmin handles. Once again, that stalwart Rover V8 provides the power which in later top 350 and 390 evolutions means plenty! Those power-dressed 80’s looks are a matter of taste but the TVR is no worse than a Lotus Eclat for build quality – make of that what you will. Throw in MGB level prices, and usually less, for this sports car which one magazine said decried as being “More fun than a Ferrari” and you’d be daft not to consider one.

MERCEDES-BENZ R107/R129


THE THRILL OF BEING PRAGMATIC

Don’t expect too many sports car thrills and spills with the R107, which was launched as far back as 1971 and nor the curvier looking R129 range which replaced it at the end of the eighties. Instead, particularly the later R129, you can own a hugely capable GT that is built like a Merc should be and made to last accordingly yet but for silly money. And with a cluster of V8s and even a V12 at your disposal, the German will see off many traditional sportsters but in the comfort and silence of one of its limos. Back up from the likes of the Midlands-based SL Shop is excellent and it’s hard to think of a more painless and practical way to go GT motoring.

JENSEN INTERCEPTOR


MIDLANDS MARVEL

The Interceptor suffers the same stigmas as the XJ-S and equally is taking an age to make it as a real classic. It is included in this dozen, not because it’s a sports car, but more because it provides cheap V8 motoring. The Birmingham Ferrari is a fine GT as well as one of the simplest and – fuel economy apart
– cheapest, super cars to run thanks to its old school make up which includes Chrysler V8 engines. Good back up support, buy now before prices really start to climb.

ASTON MARTIN DB7


JUST A JAG IN DRAG?

Elsewhere, we remark about how good the XK8 is and how this Jag in drag is half the price of its kissing cousin, the DB7. Yet by the same token, the Aston, which also shares the same uprated XJ-S platform, isn’t twice as good… What you get with the Aston is a more thoroughbred and rarer car that feels a touch more special and boasts arguably better looks. There’s the mighty V12 which is awesome but the supercharged six (itself a derivative of the Jag AJ6 engine) is almost as good and a lot cheaper to buy – as are the far less satisfying automatics. Values of DB7s is already starting to climb and exceed the earlier Virage
but you can still pick up a fair coupé auto for under £15,000.



User Comments

This review has 0 comments - Be the first!

Leave a comment

Keep it polite and on topic. Your email address will not be published. Please do not advertise products, all posts of this nature will be removed. We do not stock or supply any of these products, we independently review these products.

Latest Issue Cover - Click here to subscribe

Subscribe to Classic Motoring Magazine and save over 25%

Subscribe