Jaguar Collection | Big Cat Sanctuary
Kim Trowbridge has a passion for all cars, but his collection of Jaguars is particularly meaningful. His love of these cars is evident as he talks about the history and story behind each of these beauties. His interest in cars began at a young age and he has been collecting cars ever since. These Jaguars range from a 1956 XK 140se to a 2010 XKR. Watch a Kim describes the cars and gives us a walk around tour.
Hi everybody and welcome to Center Lane, I'm Bruce Hitchen. I'm here at the home of Kim Trowbridge who has a beautiful collection of 20 odd cars ranging from a 32 Ford to a 2020 G Wagon. Now, today we're gonna focus on his collection of Jaguars. Kim can you tell me how your interest in jaguars began? Yeah I can I was interested in cars since I can remember, since I was a little wee guy and when I was a teenager I was lucky enough to be in West Vancouver and saw an e-Type. And as soon as I saw that shape, I was in love with those cars but of course like most teenagers I couldn't really even afford the model, so that's how it started. And then how long was it until you actually acquired a Jaguar? When I was a kid, I liked cool cars, like a lot of kids do so I started by buying lousy cars and making them cool cars because I didn't have any money. So thinking about a Jag in the early days, that that wasn't on the table at all. So I was midlife when I got my first one and then it's been a half-life obsession since then. I just kept going and I plan to keep going.
Tell me about the evolution of cars? You said you started in your early 20s, how did that evolve over the years? When I first started to work with my dad, he he was a dentist but he was a car nut and he taught me how to tune the cars and how to fix the cars and most importantly how to make them go fast so that's that's what really got me going. And then after that if I wanted a car for daily life I could only afford used junk heaps and I had to fix them up, make them run, and use them as my daily driver so things just evolved from then. But it wasn't until I took care of my career and all the necessity, necessities in life that I was able to actually have cars just for pleasure. I mean, I look around here and there's five Jaguars here, I think you have even one one other than what's here is that right? Yeah. I call this the Jaguar sanctuary because it really is a beautiful collection. Which was the first one that you acquired? It was this '67 e-Type here. It was my daily driver down in our San Diego home, well actually Coronado home, so again was another daily driver and now it's up here and because of Covid it's staying here. I can't take it back.
So I was lucky enough to find its predecessor which is an XK-140se and that was a really weird find. I had been looking for approximately 10 years for a good one, they're hard to find. This one that I did find was in Drayton Valley, Alberta, owned by a farmer who had decided to get into the collector car hobby but had no idea what he was doing and didn't realize that when you buy a car like this and own a car like this, it's a commitment and a marriage. So he had a friend who owned a new car dealership, a Chevy car dealership and they put it in their showroom actually but the car wasn't running it was in really really bad shape. So I flew out there and met with them. They didn't really know what they had and and they had an insane price on it and I asked them if I could pull it in their shop and do a compression test and do some stuff with their mechanics tools. They let me, I evaluated the car and we agreed on a price and then I had it hauled here. At the end of the day we got it running and driving beautifully. Jag for me is is the the mark itself, it's about the heritage. For me they've always been incredible value, they're very fast, they're very high-tech for their day. But this particular one was about its style and its grace. I mean if you if you look at the face on the car, and the grill, and and the headlights, and it it's just such a beautiful car. In the, in the swooping lines down to the cockpit and then the haunches coming up in the rear. I mean, to me, to my taste, it's a perfect design. If you were to design the car of your dreams as a little boy, for me that, that's it.
This is a series three E-Type. It is the last model year the series threes were made from '71 to, they say '75, but actually I've never seen a '75. Production stopped in '74 so this is a 1974 E-Type they were they were all v12 cars so this is a 5.3 liter v12 engine producing about 272 brake horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. So it's it's a brisk car. It's it's not like today's standards, you know where you have three and four second cars but this car back in 1974 which was during the fuel embargo, still a mid six second 0 to 60 car and would do 150 miles an hour so a pretty exciting motor for that day. And how did you come across this one? I had been searching for approximately five years and anybody that's familiar with these cars...they are either fully restored and unaffordable, or they are said to be in good shape and then as soon as you get into them they're a mess. They're prone to rust, they have horrible areas that that tend to rust out and most people that do the body work on them, never get the original fitment together. So I was looking for a survivor. I wanted a car that had never been molested, never been restored, and I wanted to, at the most, just freshen it up. So I found this car in New Jersey, single owner car. The gentleman's son...the fellow passed away the gentleman's adult son I think, mid-40s 50, was was selling the car and it had sat in a in a garage for several years so the car wasn't in terrific shape in terms of mechanically it needed to have the gas flushed and all that sort of stuff but it was in the condition you see it. In terms of, no rust, no accidents, no dents but the paint, the enamel paint that they used in those days shrinks over time with heat and cold so it was all crazed. And I had, I made a difficult decision, now as you know the the thing to do is leave them alone. But I wanted to drive the car and I wanted it to look shiny, so I repainted the car. But we took it down and did a metal finish and there was no rust, no dents, we did no body work so the panel fitment is exactly like the original car has always meant to be. I put a new top on it and I put new seat kits in it and then I did all the tune-ups and all of that sort of stuff. But other than that, this car is as it was produced in '74 and I have the original seat covers and I have the original roof and all of that stuff but I want it to look new. Yeah, yeah, it's beautiful and it's a beautiful color too. Yeah this is their British racing green which is a British racing green that's particular to Jaguar, so it has a little more blue in it. It's not the same as Triumph or MG or any of those British cars that are British racing green. They don't quite look like this.
2010 XKR. So that's in botanical green which is the same exterior and interior color combination but interpreted in a modern way as the one year besides. So just just to put the lineage together, the the XK was the first real marketable sports car that that Jag made the XK is sort of the granddaddy in the room and then the series one E-Type, that's the 1967 last of the run within the last two months of production and this is within the last six months of production of the series three. And then they changed to the XJs and then the XK8 and then the final iteration of this lineage was that car that you're standing beside. Tell me your story with this one because clearly this is a car that you wanted to own. How did you decide that you wanted that car and then find it. Well I wanted to not pay for a new one, quite frankly. And I wanted specifically a 2010, I wanted the the 510 horsepower, supercharged engine. I wanted an R-Type and I wanted that color combination to go with this. I wanted these two to be together so you could see the evolution of time and what it became.
That's a 1963 Jaguar Mark ii Saloon so that car is related to these cars that you see here in that it has an XK motor and so that car in 1963 produced 210 brake horsepower and was relatively lightweight. It's not a lightweight car but it seats four comfortably and it's, and it's quick. So it's it's their motto of grace, pace, and space. You know I think you've mentioned to me you have a philosophy about these cars are meant to be enjoyed can you tell me about that? Yeah. I don't abuse any machinery of any kind so I want to start with that. However, they are cars, they're dynamic things that are meant to be used. They're not precious items, they're not precious gems and and they're not human beings or pets. So as long as I'm not harming it, I use it like everybody uses their daily driver and to me that's the true enjoyment. If you don't, everyone can enjoy the hobby in the way they wish and I'm, power to them, but for me if you don't drive them, you're missing the whole point. I have always been passionate about vehicles and I think it's because they were the freedom instrument of the day when I was a young man. We didn't have computers and cell phones and all that sort of stuff obviously. And our sense of independence, which most young teenage guys want to find, for me was found in cars. I was able to get in the car, break free from the confines of my my parental home and these cars, some of them represent memories, and others represent dreams, and they all represent machinery that I'm, I find is something that I'm passionate about.