With its primer-painted body and lots of parts yet to be installed, today’s Nice Price or No Dice SS Jaguar 100 kit car needs some obvious love. Let’s see if it comes with a price that’s easy to like.
With all the cool things called Corona — the refreshing Mexican beer, toe-tapping Minutemen song named for that beer, and 1981 Toyota Corona we looked at yesterday among them — you’d think the Coronavirus wouldn’t stand a chance. Instead, look at where we are. Not only that but at $8,200, that Toyota Corona couldn’t find many friends either, despite having a five-speed stick and sporty-but-yet-practical hatchback body. In the end, those couldn’t stop an enormous 92 percent No Dice loss.
Hey, have you had any pandemic projects? I’ve had three so far — my Porsche 986, a broken Breville Barista Express that I monkeyed with, and most recently a gaming rig that I assembled so I could start playing Fallout 4 and revisit old favorites like Half-Life 2 and the Portal twins. These have all been a way to stay busy over the last couple of years.
If you’re feeling that kind of cabin fever — which is a heck of a lot better than feeling a fever caused by COVID — then maybe finding something new to do with your time would be a good idea. Maybe you could finish this 1937 SS Jaguar 100 kit car since that looks like something that would keep a body busy without feeling like taking too big a bite.
According to the ad, this kit car Jag is being abandoned by its present owner due to health reasons. Aside from the paint, it looks like most of the heavy lifting on the car has already been completed. It sports components from a 1975 Ford Mustang II, including the 2.3 liter Pinto four and both the independent front and live rear ends. That Mustang also provided the car with its rack and pinion steering and four-speed transmission.
Those mechanical pieces have been bolted to a kit car frame and have been draped in bodywork that seems to do a pretty good job of impersonating an SS Jaguar 100 from the pre-war period.
As many are aware, the company that is now Jaguar once went by the name S.S. Cars Limited, using a stylized SS badge as an identifier. Unfortunately, the Nazi Schutzstaffel paramilitary organization used a similar SS badge, and since they were the biggest assholes in all of Nazi-dom, it was decided by shareholders after the war that the British SS company would change its name to Jaguar, a name plucked from its most lauded model. See? Nazis ruin everything.
The seller doesn’t say what kit car company provided the fiberglass body and square-section metal frame for the kit, but the ad does note that the car comes with the “original build booklet” which might offer clues. The body seems to be a pretty good approximation of the original SS Jaguar 100, although some of the details, like the angle of the corner just behind the doors, are a little off. The headlamps also feel a bit too widely spaced, but they do at least feature the wonderfully large chrome-plated nacelles and rock screens. The interior offers velour upholstery on the low-backed buckets and an engine-turned dash panel with gauges already in place. A windscreen is included, however, it’s not yet installed.
Other work that remains includes the paint, the completion of the exterior trim — running board cleats, etc. — and replacing the rusty faux wire wheel covers with something a little (ok, a lot) less janky. Other than that, it doesn’t seem to need much. The seller says the engine is new, by which they probably mean rebuilt, and with the around 88 horsepower the Pinto four likely produces, it probably won’t overtax the car’s suspension or brakes. That power is well off the 125 ponies the real deal Jag’s 3.5 liter six produced. With that being said, there’s nothing written in stone that says the car has to stay Pinto-powered.
And with an asking price of $4,200, who’s to say what this car’s future holds. It does have a clean title, possibly for its donor Mustang II, and so that future shouldn’t have to include long lines at the DMV to title and register. But what about getting everything buttoned up and the car looking nice? Wouldn’t that be a fun project to tackle even if we’re now able to go out and not be tied to home and hand sanitizer any longer?
What do you say, is this SS kit worth that $4,200 as it sits in its incomplete state? Or, is that too much for a project that’s probably also too much to bite off?
Help me out with NPOND. Hit me up at email@example.com and send me a fixed-price tip. Remember to include your Kinja handle.