Iconic British GT set for revival

By Motoring Staff Time of article published Sep 20, 2011

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It was the first British sports car with all-wheel drive and the first with ABS, but in other ways it was the quintessential Transatlantic hybrid - a painstakingly hand-built chassis with quirky English styling married to a big, lazy Detroit V8 - in this case a 290kW, 7.2-litre Chrysler lump.

It was, of course, the Jensen Interceptor, a comfortable and remarkably capable Grand Tourer with a distinctly odd, all-glass fastback body. Sadly, the 1973 oil crisis pushed Jensen into receivership and the last Interceptor was built in 1976, before ownership of the brand passed to Healey Sports Cars Switzerland.

But now the marque is set to be revived; a new Jensen Interceptor will be launched next year. It will echo the two-door, four-seat layout of the original, built between 1966 and 1976, but based on based on an all-new aluminium chassis and handcrafted aluminium body.

The public unveiling of the Interceptor is planned for late 2012, with deliveries to customers beginning in 2014. Annual production and pricing are yet to be confirmed, but numbers will be limited ensure exclusivity.

Healey has retained a team of Coventry-based consultants, who have completed the design - these are their sketches you're looking at. The car will be developed for production by specialist coachbuilders CPP and hand-built at a new plant in Browns Lane, once the home of Jaguar.

Brendan O'Toole, founder and co-owner of CPP, said: ""I started by restoring bodies and components for classic British sports cars, so for us to take the lead in reviving this iconic brand is very exciting for me.

"The Jensen design team has respected the heritage of the original Interceptor, while adding a contemporary edge and advanced technologies to appeal to the discerning enthusiast of today."

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