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Gleaming rare motor goes up for auction

The interior of the rare 1959 Jaguar bought in Sheffield and now being sold at auction

The interior of the rare 1959 Jaguar bought in Sheffield and now being sold at auction

It cost only £2,065 when it was bought new in Sheffield in 1959...

Now, half a century later, this gleaming rare blue Jaguar is set to fetch around £60,000 at auction.

The XK150S 3.4 litre coupe was bought new from Hatfield’s of Sheffield in 1959 by Sheffield constructional engineers J Beet Ltd.

Now it is expected to sell for between £50,000 and £70,000 at a Bonhams auction at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, Hampshire, on September 6.

The car is particularly rare because it is one of only 42 XK150S 3.4l coupes produced with a right-hand drive.

Sheffield firm J Beet Ltd - whose registered office was at Oak Street, Sheffield - owned the Jag for seven years, until they were liquidated in 1966, the year England won the World Cup.

Since then the car has had five other careful owners.

In December 1966 the car was exported to Sweden, where it was owned and restored by Bengt Johannson.

It remained in Sweden for 23 years, until 1989, when it was brought back to Britain by its third owner, Mike Hallowes. Two years later, in 1991, the car was back in Sheffield again, bought by a man named David Woodhouse.

Barry Cooke became the car’s fifth owner in October 2001.

And three years ago, in December 2011, the car was sold at a previous Bonhams auction to its sixth owner.

When J Beet Ltd bought the car in 1959 it was comparatively inexpensive to run a Jaguar. A gallon of petrol - the equivalent of more than four-and-a-half litres - cost just four shillings and eight pence - 24p in modern money.

But while the £2,065 price tag might not sound a lot now, in 1959 the average British house cost £2,410.

When the Jaguar XK150 was unveiled, Autocar magazine said it was ‘undeniably one of the world’s fastest and safest cars’.

“It is quiet and exceptionally refined mechanically, docile and comfortable.

“There are a few body details which could be improved, but we do not know of any more outstanding example of value for money.”

 

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