Jensen Interceptor (6-cylinder)

In 1949, Jensen unveiled the prototype for the car which would replace the PW, relegating the coach-built models to the annals of history. Dubbed the Interceptor, at the suggestion of Jensen friend Lord David Strathcarron, the car’s lines owed much to the slab-sided Italian styling exemplified by the latest coach-built Alfa Romeos and Lancias which Richard Jensen and his motoring friend Michael Christie encountered on trips to the Swiss snowfields. A deal with Austin boss Leonard Lord saw supplies of Austin’s single-carb 4-litre six made available to power the new Jensen, but only on condition that Jensen design for Austin a new sporting model based on the A40 chassis. This emerged in 1950 as the A40 Sports, a car with styling to match the larger Jensen product. The Interceptor set new standards for performance and comfort and had a remarkably long model life, the last examples leaving the factory in 1958. At a time when Jensen Motors was turning out 100 or more Austin Healey bodies a week on contract, only 88 Interceptors were made in almost 10 years. Four are known to have come to Australia and at least three are still here.