Smiths Gauges and the Jaguar XJ Series 1
In September 1968, the first Jaguar XJ luxury car appeared on the roads of the British Isles. It is unlikely that they knew that this was a car that would stand the test of time and be one of the official cars of both the UK Prime Minister and British Royal Family.
At the time, Jaguar was part of the newly formed British Leyland (a merger between British Motor Holdings (BMH) and Leyland Motor Corporation). The Jaguar brand was strong and it was quintessentially British.
The XJ6 replaced most of Jaguar's saloon cars and an upmarket version was promoted under the Daimler brand as the Daimler Sovereign. The two main XJ6 models featured 2.8 L and 4.2 L engines with additional power-steering and leather upholstery, although air conditioning was available as an extra on the model with the larger sized engine.
Between 1968 and 1973, Jaguar produced nearly 80,000 XJ6 cars, split as follows:
- 2.8 swb - 19,322
- 4.2 swb - 59,077
- 4.2 lwb - 574
The dashboard of the Jaguar XJ6 featured gauges designed and manufactured by Smiths Instruments in the UK. The original records and drawings are still held by Smiths Instruments at their manufacturing headquarters in South Wales. Smiths gauges are still supplied to Jaguar enthusiasts across the world today.
In total, seven gauges were supplied. The main Speedometer and Tachometer were mounted directly behind the steering wheel, with the set of Voltmeter, Oil Temperature, Clock, Water, and Fuel Gauges being positioned centrally across the whole dashboard. Each gauge had to reflect the style and luxury status of the XJ6.
Smiths Instruments have been used on many of the classic Jaguars and this blog is one of a series looking at that history.
For more information on gauges for classic Jaguar cars like the XJ6, please contact us on:
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Via the Website
Posted by Paul Fears on
9 February 2017 at 12:00 AM
Jaguar, Jaguar XJ6