1972 Jensen Interceptor III

Highlights 


  • Desirable 440cu in V8
  • To feature in an upcoming episode of Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars
  • Believed to be an original factory demonstrator

The Appeal 


The Americans weren’t the only ones to have muscle cars. Sure, they may have popularised the notion, but that hasn’t stopped other countries from having a go. Our own fair land has played host to a few, but none are so visceral or as exciting as what we have here. A Jensen Interceptor with the big block 7.2-litre V8 under that louvered bonnet.

This isn’t just a classic car with a thumping engine though. No, this is something else. Subjected to an extensive restoration, this Series III Interceptor stands today as one of the best of its kind. Excellent paint, a stunning drivetrain and a carefully preserved original interior make this the perfect storm. But, when you learn it was restored as part of Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars you soon understand why no nut nor bolt was left unturned. Not only is it set to be a TV star, it is also believed to be the 1972 demonstrator vehicle. Provenance doesn’t come much richer. Now, this incredible machine can be yours. 

Make no mistake, this is not an opportunity that will present itself again. This 1972 Jensen Interceptor will be sold, and we can assure you that whoever buys it will not want to let it leave their garage. Cars this good simply don’t hit the market often. 

The History and Paperwork


  • V5 present 
  • Will be sold with a fresh MOT
  • Believed to be the 1972 demonstrator
  • Previous tax discs present
  • Build sheet present
  • Final inspection sheet present 
  • Collection of previous MOTs present
  • Documentation of previous restoration 
  • Reunited with the original NEA 5L registration plate it wore as a factory demonstrator

Built on the 1st of August 1972, the Jensen Interceptor we have here is a Series III model. This means it was fitted with the 440cu in, or 7.2-litre in UK terms, big-block V8. Arguably the best engine to have in this model, it offered plenty of pace and a serious sense of occasion every time it was pressed into action. Mated to a three-speed automatic transmission, the big Jensen was more of a luxury GT than an out and out racer.

This car has been through a number of owners after its initial stint as the company’s demonstrator. We're also informed that during its time as a demonstrator the car was loaned to a well-known racing driver Peter Jopp. Jopp was a seasoned rally driver and circuit racer who competed at Le Mans and was also an usher at the wedding of Stirling Moss. Talk about owning a slice of history!

There is documentation pertaining to all manner of upkeep from regular maintenance and inspections to more involved rectification and restoration in the 1980s. We can also see from the paperwork that the mileage is 114k, not 14k. But such a thing is moot given the standard of the most recent restoration.

The most interesting segment of this car’s life, however, is more recent. Bought for hit TV show, Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars it would go on to be the series ‘halo’ restoration. The vendor would ideally like you to be on the show as part of the handover. Bid on a car, get yourself on telly - brilliant!

The Interior 


  • All original, but fully reconditioned
  • Leather re-Connolised 
  • New carpets
  • New chrome trim on doors and in jambs
  • All original gauges and switchgear 

As such an original survivor, the decision was made to try and retain as much of the original interior as possible. However, it’s all been cleaned, repaired where needed and re-Connolised, which has made it very presentable. A light, creamy beige, the interior is sumptuous and inviting. The seats are all in excellent order, as are all the attached tilting / reclining / adjusting mechanisms. 

The imposing dash is awash with original, functional gauges. All bright and clear, and the centre ones angled toward the driver as they should be. The dash itself is in excellent order and we could detect no cracks, or buckles from the heat. The vendor informs us that the heater nozzle bezels are slightly corroded and discoloured, as are the interior lights which also have broken lenses. Also, the heater temperature controls do not currently function. There is no radio fitted, and there is instead a trimmed blanking panel. With a 7.2L V8, one doesn’t need a radio…

The carpets throughout are excellent, the same goes for all the boot lining and so on. The door cards are original, and have been treated to the same regime of restoration as the rest of the car. There is of course some wear evident on various surfaces such as the armrests, but nothing severe. The ribbed headlining is in good order, though there are some small marks and a split evident. All the door rubbers have been renewed, too. 

The Exterior 


  • Full repaint in original Royal Blue
  • Immaculate brightwork front and rear
  • New tyres and refurbished alloy wheels 

Just look at it. One glance is all it takes to know just how well this car has been restored. The metallic Royal Blue paint has been expertly applied, and offers a gloss so deep you want to dive into it. We couldn’t detect any marks or imperfections, as the car simply hasn’t covered any mileage since it has been restored. The body appears absolutely arrow straight, after many hours of refinement in the body shop. 

The car was solid to start with, but being a Jensen, it still needed some welding work and some repair. This has all been done to a high standard, and in the case of the car’s underside, everything has been protected from the elements with a healthy coat of underbody sealant. Back on top, the chrome has been replaced where necessary - sill plates, door jambs, bumpers etc - and has been retained where not, so the door handles for example have some pitting.

The wheels have all been refurbished, including the spare under the boot floor. All five wear brand new Dunlop rubber. The lights are all bright and clear, with new lenses on the rear. The glass appears to be excellent across the car, including the all-important rear hatch.

The Mechanics


  • New brakes, brake lines and servo
  • New carburettor and inlet
  • New exhaust
  • All new fuel lines 
  • Refreshed wiring loom
  • Refurbished suspension and bushes

As you would expect for a car subject to such a comprehensive visual restoration, the mechanical stuff isn’t going to leave you wanting, either. The big 7.2 has been removed and inspected, with the conclusion that a full rebuild was not necessary. Open the big, louvered bonnet and you’ll not see a hint of a leak. Fuel and air are gulped in by a new Edelbrock filter, carb and inlet manifold. All the lines are new, as are the fixings and fittings throughout. The automatic transmission has also been overhauled, meaning smooth changes and perfect operation. 

The rest of the mechanical elements have been restored or refurbished to match. New brakes, suspension, brake and fuel lines, new bushes, new fixings and fittings throughout (have a look at the pictures of the underside and you’ll see). The car runs strong, starts without hesitation and holds temperature with ease. It’s not been driven any considerable distance post restoration, and so it will be your pleasure to put some fresh miles on it. 

Bidders should be aware that the air-conditioning isn’t currently functional as there is no condenser fitting within the engine bay (hence the two blanked-off pipes you may have observed). The Jensen system was fiercely complicated, and there are more modern options should you wish to have it retrofitted. 

Summary 


This is the sort of restoration that a car of this calibre truly deserves. Now, finished and resplendent, this is a very smart example of the Series III Jensen Interceptor, one that you really should avoid missing out on. 

This isn’t an opportunity that will present itself again any time soon. This one, for one of you, will be a keeper.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1972
  • Make Jensen
  • Model Interceptor III
  • Colour Blue
  • Odometer 14,571 Miles
  • Engine size 7212
  • Town Reading
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Trade
  • Location Berkshire
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
38 bids
  • Th•••• £51,500 30/08/22
  • ru•••• £51,000 30/08/22
  • da•••• £50,000 30/08/22
  • Th•••• £49,750 30/08/22
  • da•••• £49,500 30/08/22
  • Th•••• £49,250 30/08/22
  • ja•••• £49,000 30/08/22
  • da•••• £48,500 30/08/22
  • Th•••• £48,250 30/08/22
  • da•••• £48,000 30/08/22

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