The Swallow with a Warlike Connotation

25 August 2022

Jaguar’s business was founded as the Swallow Sidecar Company in 1922, initially making motorcycle sidecars before developing bodies for passenger cars. Under the ownership of SS Cars Limited, the business extended to complete cars made in association with Standard Motor Co, many bearing Jaguar as a model name.

One such motor car was the Jaguar SS 100, a British 2-seat sports car built between 1936 and 1940. Jaguar delivered the last SS 100 in 1941. In 1936, the name, Jaguar, was given to all cars.

Widely considered one of the most aesthetically pleasing Jaguar cars, it is also one of the rarest, with only 198 of the 2.5 litres and 116 of the 3.5-litre models made.

On the Autocar magazine test in 1937, the 2.5 litres with the windscreen lowered recorded a maximum speed of 95 mph and a 0 to 60 mph time of 13.5 seconds. With the 3.5 litres, the top speed of101 mph and 0 to 60 mph of 10.4 seconds.

The Jaguar SS 100. Introduced in the autumn of 1935 as a more powerful version of the side-valve SS 90, the first deliveries of this sports car were in March 1936. It was a bargain at £395, especially compared to competition like the £695 BMW 328.

Following World War II, the company was renamed Jaguar Cars due to the connotations attached to the initials SS.