The brand simply known as Jaguar (short for Jaguar Cars Ltd.) has an exciting history filled with even more exciting vehicles. Jaguar vehicles are recognized as being luxurious, sporty, and immaculately crafted. Jaguar is a part of Jaguar Land Rover, a division of Tata Motors, and Indian company which also owns rights to the Daimler brand. Jaguar was founded in 1922 by Sir William Lyons and William Walmsley, and its headquarters are located in Whitley, Coventry, England.
In 1922, childhood friends and vehicle enthusiasts Lyons and Walmsley were in their early 20s and, like many excited entrepreneurs, they decided to start a company. This company was the Swallow Sidecar Company, and it was the predecessor to the Jaguar name we know today. The young men began building their Swallow racecars, and the company really took off; Swallows were in high demand. In five years' time, Swallow was working to fashion chassis bodies with names like Fiat, Morris, and Austin, and in 1931, the company joined forces with another chassis-builder located nearby, Standard Motor Company to fashion the SS1 ("Standard Swallow"). Low, long styling and wood interior became the trademark of this vehicle and many Jaguars to come. The actual Jaguar name was fashioned in 1935 with the London Auto Show exhibition; this exhibition featured the SS Jaguar 100. It was extremely fast, with a top speed of 100 mph and a zero-to-sixty time of ten and a half seconds. The "SS" brought negative connotations to the company, however, because of its Nazi connections, so they were eventually dropped.
At this period in time, Jaguar began to produce several different kinds of vehicles, including sports car, limos, and convertibles, using everything from 1.-5 to 3.5 liter engines. However, by the time the car came, Jaguar was back to building sidecars. Luckily, this didn't last long, and Jaguar's XK 120, the company's first sports car, appeared at the Earls Court auto show in 1948. Only two hundred cars were slated to be built from the XK, but public desire for the vehicle was overwhelming, and the car was mass produced instead. Other popular cars to help Jaguar compete against such brands as Chrysler, BMW, and Porsche over the next several years included the C-type 1950s competition cars, and the improved XK 140. Jaguar bought several companies such as Daimler, Guy Motors, and Coventry-Climax in the early 60s, and created the popular and iconic E-type in 1961 and the 4.2-liter Series 2 in 1968.
Jaguar struggled financially for several years, until it debuted the Jaguar XJ40 and was shortly afterwards saved by Ford Motor Company in 1990. Today, Jaguar is a successful luxury brand which still sells its X-type vehicles, both coupes and sedans. The newest Jaguar vehicles are the XF sedan, the XJ sedan, and XK coupe and convertible, all of which combine the company's storied racing history and luxurious nature There is also a Jaguar R-Series in production, including the new XFR, XKR and XKR-S. In 2008, Jaguar was purchased by Tata Motors, based in India.