Jensen Healey GT

Jensen Healey GT

The GT variant of the Jensen Healey is quite rare - only 100 were ever made and most were exported to the United States. The main difference is in the body and, like the MGB GT, it looks a bit like an estate version of the normal sports car. From the rear, the car is reminiscent of the Volvo P1800 estate (the "Saint car" - it is not generally known that Jensen actually built the P1800 bodies for Volvo here in the UK on mechanicals sent over from Sweden and shipped them back as complete cars; many were shipped back to Britain for sale again!). There is a fine example of the P1800 estate often to be seen in Campden Hill Road near the Kensington Campus.

Like all Jensens, the mechanicals came from other cars - most of the suspension, brakes, etc are derived from the Vauxhall Magnum while the 5-speed Getrag gearbox is a popular fitment on up-market German cars such as Porsche. It's powered by a Lotus 2-litre engine with 4 valves per cylinder which means 16 valves in all - a rare feature in the mid-70s!

Currently, it is awaiting complete restoration - it suffered quite a lot of damage underneath after a half-shaft snapped and a rear wheel came off in Kensington on my way to Queen Elizabeth College a few years ago; it's going to be quite expensive as the engine is pretty well clapped-out and Lotus parts aren't cheap :-(

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Andy Thomas, March 16th, 1998.