2020 Shannons Melbourne Autumn Classic Auction

1966 Daimler 2.5L V8 Saloon




Engine 2548cc V8
Gearbox Three-speed Automatic
Body Work Sedan
Colour Sherwood Green
Interior Cream
Trim Leather
Wheels Steel with hubcaps
Brakes Disc/disc


This lot is no longer available

Jaguar's purchase of Daimler from BSA in 1960 yielded one key asset in the form of the powerful and compact 2.5-litre V8, previously used to power the somewhat ungainly SP 250 sports model. Designed by the talented Edward Turner, the 90-degree unit produced more power, was far more refined and weighed considerably less than Jaguar's own 2.4-litre XK unit. Recognising the potential of Turner's engine, William Lyons and his engineers installed the V8 in the compact Mark II saloon to create a car with an entirely different character, one that appealed to an altogether more sophisticated customer. Fitted with twin SU carburettors, the engine developed 140 horsepower and the Daimler could reach nearly 110 mph, accompanied by a lovely V8 exhaust note through the twin pipes. Most Daimler 250 V8s came with Borg-Warner's excellent T35 automatic transmission that worked well with the motor's characteristics, giving effortless performance. Inside the cabin, the Daimler had a lovely traditional ambience, with a Walnut veneer dash complete with full instrumentation, a split bench front seat and West of England headlining. Power steering was commonly specified, and most Daimlers came with leather upholstery, even after Jaguar switched to the cheaper 'Ambla' material on the Mark II in September 1966. The Daimler 250 proved a very popular addition to the Jaguar range and nearly 18,000 were made before production ceased in 1969 - becoming the most successful car to wear the famous fluted radiator in the process. With the rapid increase in prices of Mark IIs in recent years, the Daimler 250 V8 is something of a bargain in comparison.