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1972 Jensen Interceptor III 7.2, (128-4851) For Sale

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  • £34,950 Or near offer
  • 1972
  • Stroud
Message the seller
Price £34,950 Or near offer
Ad Type For Sale
Category Classic Cars
Make Jensen
Model Interceptor
Year 1972
Mileage 75,000 miles
Country UK
Region Gloucestershire
Town Stroud
Telephone 07917 234897
Status Private
Date 23-Sep-2020
Ref C1155470
This is an advert that I never expected to write!  This is my personal Jensen Interceptor saloon – and is a car that I expected to keep for ever. However, I've now bought an Interceptor convertible, so this saloon is reluctantly for sale to fund that one's restoration.

Full details are at - details above

I bought this car in July 2017, and ran around in it happily for the following year. In July 2018, it underwent nine months of mechanical recommissioning and improvements, including:-

New Edelbrock Performer-series unleaded cylinder heads
New Edelbrock Performer camshaft
New Edelbrock Performer Inlet Manifold
Overhauled existing Edelbrock Performer Carburettor
Timing chain and timing gear replaced
All bearings and rings replaced
Crankshaft re-polished
Aluminium cover fitted to new water pump
Hi-torque starter motor fitted
High output alternator fitted
High output oil pump fitted
Both exhaust manifolds replaced, together with interim pipes and tailpipes
Aluminium radiator fitted
New tyres to all road wheels
Xenon headlamp bulbs
Rebuilt steering rack fitted and rebuilt steering column with new bushes
All suspension fitted with polyurethane bushes
Spax adjustable gas-filled shock absorbers all round
New rear leaf springs
Underbonnet detailing, including new insulation material and lightly polished rocker covers
The previous owner had also fitted rear parking sensors and an over-ride switch for the twin electric radiator fans.  He also fitted a modern CD-player, with aux input, with speakers fitted to the front doors and to the rear parcel shelf.

The mechanical specification aimed to make the car capable of reliable daily use and able to cover 10,000 miles per annum if required.  This task has been fully achieved, and since then, the Jensen has covered more than 4000 miles - 3000 of which were covered in three months, just to prove that point! That mileage includes 850 miles in two days, as part of the Drive-It Day celebrations.  This epic trip is reported in August 2019’s Jensen Owner’s Club magazine, with a three-page photo-spread.

Whilst the car still presents itself well, cosmetically it would benefit from a respray in the medium term - so the new owner can elect to do that when you decide that you want to do so, and conceivably in any colour you want (when new, the car was Royal Blue Metallic with no vinyl roof).  This also explains the price, which is at least £20k less than the car would warrant with that respray completed.

This Interceptor saloon dates from September 1972, and is a Series III H-Series.  This uses the 7,212cc V-8 Chrysler engine, with the Mk III bodywork styling and internal revisions (which was launched at the October 1971 Earls Court Motor Show).  The first Series IIIs used the earlier 6.3-litre ‘G’-series engine, but from May 1972 Jensen started to fit the larger, and more powerful, 440cu.in (7.2-litre) ‘H’-series Hi-compression engine.  By late 1973, Jensen were obliged to fit anti-smog equipment to the engine, which then became known as the J-series, which reduced the power output again – so the H-series is the engine of choice!

History

There’s a fair bit of interesting history for this car too.  It was originally sold via London Dealer Charles Follett Ltd in September 1972 to a member of the ‘landed gentry’ who at the time was the financier for Trident Studio - a major music recording studio in Soho.  This studio even recorded Hey Jude for The Beatles, and supporting material with the car includes an original Joan Armatrading master-disc produced by Trident.  I’ve been in touch with the first owner, and there is a lovely supporting letter from him too.

The car then went through a couple of other owners before ending up with the manager of major pop bands, including A-ha and Kajagoogoo.  After this, its fortunes deteriorated, and it ended up parked-up unused for many years.  A Jensen enthusiast bought it, got it running, and then sold it on eBay in 2007 to the guy I bought it off two-years ago.

Most of the history is thus known, and there are some old MoT certificates etc.  There is a copy of the original build file, heritage certificate, warranty claim details etc.  I even managed to track down the original owners’ handbook for this very car and re-unite it, after it had ended up in Belgium!  There are two A4-lever arch folders that go with the car – one has history, specification etc in it, and the other contains parts and labour invoices for all the work completed recently.

Mechanical

On the road, the Jensen drives at least as well as you would hope that it would!  The car starts first turn of the key and settles down quickly to a powerful burble, holding good oil pressure (50-60psi).   There’s plenty of performance from the 7.2-litre 300+bhp engine, which pulls hard, accelerating quickly up to licence-losing speeds.  The gearbox is smooth and refined, and the handling and roadholding are excellent – thanks in part to the combination of new rear springs and adjustable gas-filled shock absorbers all round.   The milometer now shows 76,000 miles, and I’ve got no reason to think that that isn’t correct.
The air conditioning is all present but doesn't work - it may simply need re-gassing, but if I was keeping the car I'd be changing it for a new air con system that draws less engine power and works better than the original ones!

Bodywork

The Interceptor is currently painted in a mid-blue colour, with a tan vinyl roof and tan interior.  When new, it was supplied in Royal Blue with no vinyl roof.  The current colour is reasonably close to Royal Blue, but it would be up to you what to paint it!  The car was resprayed by the last owner, and whilst he has made a reasonable job of it, it is getting close to the time to do it again and do it professionally this time.  There are a couple of rust bubbles on the tailgate, the rear valance needs attention, and there is micro-blistering in a number of other places in the paintwork.  There was rust in the bottom of both doors, although this has been tidied up and repainted. All that said, the car still presents very well and attracts positive comments wherever it goes.

All Interceptor enthusiasts know to inspect the jacking points, and drain holes in the sills; these all check out fine and correctly – suggesting that the inner sills are fine.  The original front sidelight/indicator units are still with the car, if you decided to remove the aftermarket Series IV front valance that has been fitted.  The chromework is not too bad – if I was keeping the car then I would have the bumpers re-chromed when doing the bodywork, but it’s not pressing.

Interior

The interior is pretty good too.  The dashboard is fine, with no damage or cracks to the plastic.  The carpets were replaced in 2007, and they are fine.  The driver’s seat leather has split where the backrest adjuster rubs up against it; if I was keeping the car, then getting the front seats re-covered would probably be the next job on the list.

Summary

This is an opportunity to buy a mechanically-sorted Interceptor, either to happily use as-is, or to re-paint to your own specification in due course.  There were about 4200 Interceptor IIIs sold (of which around half were for the UK market) with something around 700 still known to exist altogether worldwide.  Interceptor ownership is a wonderful experience, and there’s an enthusiastic and welcoming owners’ club to support this.  Virtually all repair parts are available – although (reflecting the handbuilt nature of the cars), most parts don’t fit ‘out of the box’.

The car is now well known to the chaps at Rejen in Winchester, who have provided guidance as to its value etc. Why not ring them and ask them about this car?

As will doubtless have come across, I’m a die-hard Jensen enthusiast, so I’d be delighted to discuss this Interceptor (or anything else Jensen-related) at any time.  Please call me.  Any professional inspection etc is welcomed, with all visits by appointment only please as the car is stored off-site.
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