The Jaguar MK V is an evolution of the SS Jaguar series that entered the market during the interwar period. The MK V - short for Mark Five - was built meticulously over a period of only three years. This short production run does not mean that the MK V was not ground-breaking; on the contrary, ingenuity and inventiveness are the characteristics that define this car.
Jaguar's ability to maintain its stately and classic image while thinking innovatively and progressively cannot be emphasized enough. It's a trademark that the Mark Five exemplified. The MK V is a classic eye-catcher, available as an open coupé or a regular saloon, it was the first Jaguar ever to feature independent front wheel suspension, hydraulic brakes, indicators, and it was the first Jaguar that was sold with both left-hand and right-hand drive, which boosted its sales.
Under the hood, two straight-six engines reside, with capacities of 2.7 litres or 3.5 litres, making power outputs of 102 hp or 125 hp and emitting a delightful growl that is unmistakably true to Jaguar. These relatively powerful engines are operated by a 4-speed manual gearbox, and shifting gears is a breeze that never stops to bring immense pleasure. The interior reinforces the captivating nostalgic feel of the postwar fifties, adorned with classic leather and wood tones. On the exterior, there is the sleek design with the Jaguar emblem proudly standing on top of the long hood, underneath which the engine identity is indicated: '3 ½ litre' or '2 ½ litre'. The convertible version features so-called 'landau bars' that not only serve a functional purpose for the soft-top but also add the finishing touch to the overall look. This car is a delight, and collectors are enamoured with it.
Its name, 'Mark Five', caused some confusion since there had not been a Mark One, Two, Three, or Four ever released before. 'Mark Five' was said to refer to the number of prototypes. It was only with the fifth prototype for this car that Jaguar's design team gave the green light for the production of this handsome, and that fifth prototype lent its name to eternity.
The MK V was produced in parallel with the highly sporty Jaguar XK 120 of which only half as many models were built, which demonstrates the sales figures of the MK V. In 1951, the MK V was succeeded by the MK VII since Bentley had already claimed 'MK VI'.
The MK V is an adored vintage car: it is highly functional, spacious, exceptionally solid, and it pushes the boundaries of aesthetic perfection.