Jaguar’s principal motive in purchasing Coventry neighbours Daimler had been the acquisition of much needed production capacity without the expense of constructing on a distant ‘green field’ site. The fact that the purchase also included Daimler’s splendid lightweight V8 engines was entirely incidental from Jaguar’s standpoint, yet would result in the creation of one of the finest sports saloons of the 1960s.
First seen in the rapid, if controversially styled, SP250 sports car, the 2.5-litre version was judged superior to Jaguar’s 2.4-litre XK six and so the opportunity arose to create a medium sized, upmarket model based on the Mk2 saloon, something Daimler’s leading distributor, Stratstone, had been crying out for. The job was made relatively easy by the V8’s compact nature and the generously sized Jaguar engine bay. Launched in 1962 as the ‘2½-Litre V8’ (later ‘V8 250’), the new Daimler came with Borg Warner automatic transmission as standard. More refined than the equivalent Jaguar, the Daimler turned out to be a fine performer to boot, its 110mph top speed exceeding that of an overdrive-equipped, 2.4-litre Mk2 by a wide margin. Not surprisingly, the V8 was soon outselling its Jaguar rival and in due course became the most successful Daimler of all time with more than 17,600 sold up to the end of production in 1969.
With only one previous owner from new, this wonderful example is offered with an extensive history file of invoices and MOT’s dating back to the early 90s including its bill of sale by the current vendor from Sotheby’s in 1993!
Having had a small fortune spent on the car in its current custodianship, this wonderful Daimler is ready to be enjoyed for many years to come!