Lot 189 - 1953 Jowett Jupiter Mk. II

Lot 189 - 1953 Jowett Jupiter Mk. II

Lot 189 - 1953 Jowett Jupiter Mk. II

Lot Number 189
Registration 733 UYL
Chassis Number E3/5c/944R
Engine Number SUR25642N
Result Sold - £22,640
  • Unique British sportscar
  • Lovely history

The Jupiter Mk. II was designed by Jowett in 1952 but never built. In 2008, respected Jowett restorer, Allan Fishburn, created a one-off Mk. II (from the original drawings) based on a 1953 Jowett Jupiter chassis and rebuilt engine, clothed in hand-beaten aluminium panels. Jowett was a small family owned motor company, based in Bradford, England, which was founded in 1906. In the post war period from 1949-1953 the company had tremendous racing success with the Javelin and the Jupiter models, notably winning the 24 hours Le Mans 1500cc class with the Jupiter in 1950, 1951 and Jupiter R1 in 1952. Sadly, in 1953, the company ceased production due to body supply issues as a result of a takeover by Ford Motor Company of its partner/supplier Briggs Motor Bodies Limited.

Shipped on 16th 1953 (E2 SC 944R – E3 SC 944R as E2 in the main records, E3 in the warranty records) to Longton Garages Ltd, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire and registered as 2258 E to T.W.T Harrison, Greenacre, Norton-in-Hales, North Shropshire. The original colour was ivory with red upholstery and just 14 miles separated the agent from the customer. In 1961, a bus drove into it, either in Birmingham or Coventry and at some point after this event it came to George Mitchell, Thrums, Cleish, Kinross, Scotland. George Mitchell owned its remains, at least, as far back as 1973. George listed it as an ‘E3’. One early description of it in George’s collection states ‘chassis frame, front suspension, rear section of body only, including boot lid. No rear axle etc.’

Then, in 1979 Edmund Nankivell, renowned authority and author of several publications of the Jowett Jupiter, visited C.H.Wood (Bradford) Ltd who had been the Jowett company’s official photographer; they had some of the negatives showing a 1952 photograph of the ‘Plasticine’ model of the proposed Jupiter Mk. II and paper factory drawings of it with various sketches of how the car would look. Jowett’s engineer Phil Stephenson had penned the Mk. II body design which was based on the standard and well proved Von Eberhorst Jupiter chassis with some modification to the very rear section. It was clear that this was intended by Jowett to be the next generation Jupiter, but sadly the limited resources at Jowett were diverted and the Mk. II was shelved.

Allan Fishburn, a panel-beater by trade, got interested, having previously done a very good job on several Jupiters. Edmund Nankivell supplied Allan with photos of factory drawings and a plasticine model he had obtained from C.H. Wood and tipped Allan off about this Jupiter chassis available from George Mitchell. Allan bought the bare stripped frame from George Mitchell on 27th June 2008. Chassis condition ‘not bad apart from gearbox cross-member’. Allan Fishburn built it up into his Jupiter Mk. II form from the bare stripped SC 944R frame, using JC Ltd drawings, all bodywork aluminium. By dint of modifying the near-side chassis front upright, he was able to move the engine back two inches – this enabled him to place the water radiator in front of the engine – something Jowett might have done! Water pump is an adapted Volkswagen Golf unit. The car is understood to be fitted with a five-speed Ford gearbox. This Mk. II Jupiter passed its MoT test certificate in early December 2011. In August 2013, Allan decided to give up his business and sell the Jupiter.

A new owner, new registration then followed in 2015, who commissioned a full rebuild. The body-off restoration and respray was carried out by T W Brotherton of Blockley. A new wiring loom and instruments were then installed. Its final refurbishment was carried out by Irntam that included new braking and cooling system, running gear and interior. In November 2017, the Mk. II Jupiter, the ‘model that Jowett never built’ was put on display at the NEC Classic Motor Show. In 2019, MB Restorations re-built the engine and all mechanicals were overhauled, including brakes, clutch, ignition system, bespoke radiator and water pump, new custom fuel tank and pump. Finally, in 2020, the interior of the car was fitted out in a beautiful green leather and new Michelin 550HR16s were fitted in June 2020. The car was sold in May 2021 to the current vendor, who has had a lot of fun with it, driving it locally in Kent, participating in local events and it had pride of place as the bride and groom’s wheels from church to reception last summer. There is a full history file, including many photographs, of works and maintenance through to 2022. The car was one of 60 featured in By Jupiter! A magazine of the Jupiter owners club, Edition number 4 2022, 60th anniversary issue.

This is a very pretty British sportscar indeed, Jowetts were always different and quirky and this little roadster encompasses everything you might hope to find in a fifties' sportscar. This is a unique opportunity to own and drive the physical incarnation of the dreams and aspirations of those enthusiastic young draughtsmen who toiled away in the Jowett drawing office some seven decades ago and close the final chapter in the story of the Jowett Car Company.

The car is featured in the following publications.
Jowett Javelin and Jupiter, Geoff McAuley and Edmund Nankievel,2003, p146-147
The Jowett Jupiter, Edmund Nankievel, 2016, P139

 

Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each Lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. All registration numbers, engine and chassis details are sourced from registration documents provided to Historics by the client or representative or HPI checks and buyers are to satisfy themselves as to the accuracy of these details. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.

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