1972-1976 Jensen-Healey and Jensen GT

1972-1976 Jensen-Healey: Production History

After the first year, when the Jensen-Healey's irritating problems like engine oil draining away from the pumps after overnight parking, and a tendency to jump out of second and fourth gears (caused by the use of an overly rigid gear-lever surround) were solved, a Mk 2 version was unveiled.

From August 1973, there was a new engine cylinder-block casting, rede­signed body-pressing joints, and the addition of dress-up brightwork strips on the shell. Simulated wood trim replaced plastic on the instrument panel, and though all this cost more, it seemed to be worth it.

1974 Jensen interior
Jensen-Healeys like this 1974 model featured
real wood accents in the cabin.

A little more than a year later, in November 1974, a "Mk 3" (it was never officially called that) took over, the major improvement being the fitment of a close-ratio five-speed German Getrag gearbox in place of the Chrysler-UK four-speeder. A higher final-drive ratio -- 3.45:1 instead of 3.73:1 -- was specified at the same time. This time, too, there were real wood accents in the cabin.

On the outside, stout rubber-covered bumpers able to withstand five-mph impacts (per U.S. regulations) were installed. In the meantime, though, the Arab-led oil embargo of 1973-74 had stood the motoring world on its head. In 1973 (when there were no fewer than 52 J-H outlets in the USA), Jensen's biggest trouble had been to fulfill all the orders coming in, but by 1975, these had begun to dry up. It was time for the range to be expanded.

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