Welcome to the spectacular cover of our next edition – featuring ‘Iron Maiden’ drummer Nico McBrain’s brand new sensational Series 3 XJ6 which was carefully hand-built and updated by Classic Jaguar in Coventry.

Currently on the Jaguar stand at the Geneva Show, the full story of this super-exciting car is told in a six-page feature and includes Nico’s long time passion for Jaguar.

Other highlights include the first official public release of the revolutionary all-electric powered I-Pace, the most radical production Jaguar every to be sold, and the first drive of the new smaller Jaguar SUV E-Pace.

A gorgeous V12 E-Type Roadster gets the full modernisation treatment, a tribute to Carl Linder the late Barossa ‘King’ and his Jaguars (plus four S.S.1s), reader Peter Lehrke drives new Jaguars on ice at the wind-swept Jaguar facility in Sweden, Price Edward at home with Jaguars at Windsor Castle – and so much more to inform and entertain …

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Our three week long specially arranged Jaguar Magazine Tour to Europe in August and September has just 10 spots left – and they close on March 21.

Our editor will host the Tour, and fully included are visits to:

Porsche and Mercedes-Benz Musuem

Reims city and the famous abandoned track where Jaguar won with its C and D-Types

Mum Champagne cellars

Free time in Paris

Free time in London

Special reception for us at the legendary RAC headquarters in London

Jaguar Castle Bromwich plant visit

Inspect new Jaguar Land Rover Classic works

Visit the official Jaguar collection of cars at two museums at Gaydon and in Coventry

Hampton Court Palace Concours d’Elegance

Brooklands track visit

The Goodwood Revival with grandstand seating

Many dinners included, all breakfasts, all entries, all accomodation, coach touring with driver and courier – and special treats too.

All airfares can be arranged from any city.

We have had six of these Tours – but this may be the last.

If you are interested contact Bronwen in our office at, or call us on +61 (0)7 3349 0322.

We have been told by our booking agents that we can’t go beyond the 21st of this month with final numbers because of the amount of organisation involved for them.

We would love to have you join us if this appeals to you – and we have some special surprises too …

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The super-exciting and revolutionary Jaguar I-Pace made its official world public debut today at Geneva.  Handsome it is too, we believe.

I don’t think most people have got their minds around what a huge motoring revolution is being created right at this moment, and Jaguar, along with Tesla, are the leaders in that massive change.

Looking at the car here, it appears larger  and longer than I had previously imagined.

Jaguar Land Rover at the 2018 Geneva Motorshow.

I must admit though  – I really think I, and most others – would like to have the option of traditional engine noise, even if it is all fake.

Much as I enjoy Formula E – it badly misses that essential excitement noise brings with it, and road car drivers will always almost all like it in their cars, traditional fuelled or electric.  I can imagine that if manufacturers don’t offer that, aftermarket companies will be right on the job.

Jaguar Land Rover at the 2018 Geneva Motorshow.

Enjoy the sight of the most revolutionary Jaguar ever sold.

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Today at the Geneva Motor Show Jaguar Classic is proud to present Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain’s custom-built ‘Greatest Hits’ Jaguar XJ6, kicking-off Jaguar’s XJ 50th anniversary celebrations in 2018.

The bespoke commission is a collaboration between Nicko, the expert engineers and craftsmen at Jaguar Land Rover Classic Works in Coventry, and Jaguar Design studio director Wayne Burgess. The project involved more than 3500 man hours of work, with more than 4000 parts refinished, replaced or redesigned. Unlike any 1984 XJ6 before, it incorporates substantial modifications to the exterior, interior, drivetrain and suspension, resulting in Nicko’s dream XJ.

Tim Hannig, Jaguar Land Rover Classic director, said: “Creating this ‘Greatest Hits’ XJ, and the whole process of bringing someone’s automotive dream to life, has been extraordinarily rewarding for the Jaguar Classic team. It’s been a pleasure to work with Nicko and we’re looking forward to hearing the reaction to this project.”

Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain, said: “This is my ultimate XJ – my third, and lovingly named ‘Johnny 3’. It has been a true labour of love between Jaguar Classic and myself. I’m so excited by its completion and especially to be showing it at Geneva – it really is a Greatest Hits edition and to me it defines what the Jaguar XJ is all about. It’s a credit to the craftsmanship of the Jaguar Classic team. We couldn’t have timed it better, this being the 50th anniversary of XJ – my favourite of all Jaguars.”

Key features include:

  • Unique front and rear bumpers – seamlessly blended in to the modified fenders with bespoke chrome brightwork and flush-fit US side markers
  • Flared and re-profiled front and rear wheel arches accommodating bespoke 18-inch wire wheels fitted with 235/45 R18 Pirelli P Zero tyres
  • Unique sills and modified rear door pressings
  • Uprated front and rear suspension with adjustable rear dampers
  • Unique Mauve paint finish
  • Conversion to elegant Series 2 XJ door handles and bullet wing mirrors
  • Conversion to LED headlights with ‘Halo’ daytime running light signature
  • Conversion to recessed twin fuel fillers
  • Modern door sealing for reduced wind noise, and additional sound deadening
  • Integrated touch screen operating satnav, phone, rear view camera and in-car entertainment
  • Re-trimmed interior with modified seat foams improving refinement
  • Bespoke audio system with USB connectivity, featuring guitar amplifier-inspired control knobs machined from aluminium
  • In-dash starter button
  • Uprated air-conditioning
  • Remote central locking

Inside, classic Jaguar style meets modern day convenience. The leather seats are hand trimmed in Pimento Red with black piping and embossed head rests, while a black hand-crafted carpet and Alcantara headlining finishes off the trim. The dashboard features Dark Grey stained Sycamore veneers – the preferred material for Nicko’s favourite snare drums.

Further nods to the owner’s art include machined aluminium rotary controls on the dashboard – inspired by the control knobs of the guitar amplifiers created by Nicko’s great friend Jim Marshall, and drum kit inspired pedals finished in chrome and black. The custom three-spoke sports steering wheel features Nicko’s unique mascot – the ‘Eddie Growler’, first seen on his specially commissioned 2013 Jaguar XKR-S.

Bespoke soft down lighting illuminates the revised dashboard, in which a state-of-the-art Alpine touch screen controls the 1100W sound system, powering speakers from Nicko’s preferred Jaguar audio installation, the 12MY Jaguar XF.

Incorporating a number of reconditioned parts from McBrain’s original XJ6, the 4.2-litre in-line six-cylinder engine features three 2-inch SU carburettors from the E-type – Nicko’s favourite set up. Machined quad-exhaust tail pipes finish-off a specially-designed exhaust system.

Preserved components from Nicko’s first XJ6, which spent many years stood in the grounds of the home of Iron Maiden bass guitarist Steve Harris, following Nicko’s move to America, are present elsewhere in the build too: from the iconic Jaguar leaper bonnet mascot, which first attracted Nicko to buy the car, to the original ignition keys from 1984.

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What is it?

The Jaguar I-Pace, the British manufacturer’s revolutionary battery-powered ‘performance SUV’, first appeared as a concept at the Los Angeles motor show in 2016 – and we’ve also drive an early version – but in the 15 months since, the two most important questions about the car have not yet been answered.

First, is it a real Jaguar? Second, does it drive like one? On the outcome of these twin examinations rests the success of a huge investment in design and engineering, not to mention much of the company’s bold future strategy, namely to excite and inspire buyers with the finest modern technology, just as it 70 years ago in the extraordinary post-war period that produced the XK120 sports car and a string of fabulous saloons that led to the seminal XJ6 of 1968.

We were given the first answers to those burning I-Pace questions as a prelude to the Geneva motor show when Jaguar fenced off a piece of taxiway at the end of Geneva’s busy airport and set up what amounted to an autosolo course of ‘smart cones’ designed to indicate the desired handling course only at the last second, so drivers needed every ounce of the car’s agility to follow it.

This wasn’t a test drive per se, but it was a decent first chance to slip behind the wheel, and the kind of opportunity to test the car’s near-limit responses – conferred by a sophisticated all-independent suspension and an ultra-low centre of gravity – that you probably wouldn’t get in 1000 miles of driving on normal roads.

For the first time, a Jaguar must do without a great-looking internal combustion engine – perhaps with a heritage of its own – and the accompanying sound of combustion, in the past painstakingly engineered to please an owner’s ear. Now, the I-Pace has silent electric motors mounted at either end of a skateboard chassis, the pair contributing 395bhp and 513lb ft to give the car 0-60mph acceleration in 4.5 seconds.


What’s it like?

For a while I watch others drive, noting the reluctance of this long wheelbase, ultra low-centre of gravity car to roll its body, or slide, or do anything very much except squeal its tyres in extremis and go where it is steered. It does indeed change direction brilliantly – you can see that with the naked eye – helped by the fact that its torque vectoring system can send more than 90% of torque to the rear axle for a proper rear-wheel-drive feel.

I settle in the driver’s seat, noting the quality of the materials, double stitching here, tastefully co-ordinating colours there. The brightwork is of high quality, the switches and two prominent and all-important central rotary knobs very pleasing to touch. The interior feels less radical in detail and colour than what I remember of the concept, but the architecture is very similar.

The upper slopes of the big centre console are largely covered by two large but well integrated screens (satnav and audio above, ventilation controls below) and there’s generous space behind it for equipment plus a convenient hand-sized hatch to access it from the centre. I’m sitting in what are called ‘performance seats’ which, of three seat designs, are most reminiscent of those in the original concept car.

There are three regular trim levels – S, SE and HSE.  We have the optional 22in wheels which engineering manager and I-Pace guru Dave Shaw reckons best show off the handling.

It’s time to drive. There is no noise or auto-style creep, although you can choose the latter from a huge range of driving options if you desire. We glide off the mark like no combustion car ever did, then accelerate to the first obstacle cleanly and strongly. Instantly, the extreme faithfulness of this car to control inputs is clear. This is a tight course, so very soon we’re jinking and accelerating and regen-braking constantly. You can get 0.2g of retardation from simply coming off the accelerator, and another 0.2g from initial use of the brake pedal, so in most situations you hardly need friction braking at all.

The steering wheel feels big for tight manoeuvres like these, but the driving position is perfect: a fairly high wheel, plenty of seat bolstering and under-thigh support, an ideal instrument view, and the response to lock is accurate. Even here, with tyres screeching and the car always turning fast, Shaw’s words about the I-Pace’s torque distribution ensuring “uncorrupted” steering come back to me. The weighting is just right for serious driving, not merely convenient parking, and I’m surprised how little this body rolls. That’s a function of the low-mounted battery, I’m told, and the centralisation of the major masses.

In most derivatives you get conventional steel anti-roll bars (accompanying steel coil springs) to handle things. The low centre of gravity means they need to be as intrusive as many. On air suspension models – which offer three ride heights that vary over 90mm – the quick-acting air suspension units help control roll, too. As for grip, there’s plenty on the airport’s slow, non-slip tarmac, though off throttle the car tightens neatly in bends, especially when its maximum regeneration setting is engaged. This is only a five-minute drive, albeit an action-packed one, but the impressions I take from it are the I-Pace’s accuracy and precision.


Should I buy one?

The burning question on the strength of our very short drive is: is the I-Pace a real Jaguar? It certainly feels like one. It’s different, but so most cars will be in future, and it still feels authentic. The refinement seems deeply impressive and given the decor, the seat comfort, the room and the responses I have no trouble feeling I’ve been at the wheel of a proper Jaguar.

It’ll take proper journeys – city commutes by time-poor business drivers and inter-capital dashes by discerning comfort-lovers – that will prove this car, not an engaging but slightly daft exercise like ours that no owner will ever repeat. But so far? Grace, space and pace – I’ve felt them all.

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