1959 Jaguar Buchanan


This custom Jaguar was conceived and built from 1977-79 in Santa Barbara, California by well-known automotive engineer Kelly Buchanan, who grew up in Santa Cruz, California with an avid interest in automobiles since his youth. He acquired many fine exotics over the years including a 1936 Cord 810, 1932 Stutz DV-32, 1953 Aston Martin DB-2 and even raced at Pebble Beach in the 1950s in a 1952 Singer that he had modified. After moving to Santa Barbara in 1976, he was inspired to create the car on offer after visiting the Monterey historic event at Laguna Seca. Kelly stated that he simply wanted a car which embodied all the 1930s design elements he so admired, integrated into a mechanically sophisticated package. The resulting Jaguar Buchanan Roadster was Kelly's passionate interest and immense joy until his passing in 2001.

This one-off vehicle is being offered to the public in its original condition. The car is based on a special rectangular tube chassis utilizing many Jaguar components that include its Jaguar 5.3-liter SOHC V-12 engine with six Weber carbs and connected to a Jaguar gearbox. The front suspension is from a 1971 E-Type and the rear is from a 1972 XJ6. Likewise; the four-wheel disc brakes (fronts are ventilated), wire wheels, knock-off hubs and steering have Jaguar lineage.

The unique body is made from 19-gauge steel that was formed over wood bucks supplied by Mr. Buchanan and executed by Red's Metal Shaping in Gardena, California. The body is mounted to the chassis and is removable. The boattail-styled rear bodywork pivots on a rear cross-member and allows access to the storage area. The Custom Jaguar also has its all-weather equipment, bucket seats, engine-turned dash with full Smiths instrumentation and radio. The low-profile hood is dominated by louvers all around, the raked windshield is adapted from an XK 120 Jaguar that has been shortened and narrowed. The radiator shell is fabricated from 16-gauge steel and triple-chrome plated, while the mascot is a cast-bronze escargot.

When completed in 1979 Mr. Buchanan's custom Jaguar placed first in the Exotics Coachbuilt class at the Santa Barbara Concours.



Engine Size
5.3 Liter SOHC V12

Body Color
Maroon w/ Red
Body Style

Seating Type
Seat Material


Figure based on a stock vehicle with OH rates with $100/$300k Liability/UM/UIM limits. Rates vary depending on the state, coverage selected and other factors. Policies underwritten by Essentia Insurance Company. Some coverage and discounts not available in all states. Call 877-922-9701 to speak with a representative or apply online. $354 /YEAR Insurance
Stock #
5.3 Liter SOHC V12
4 Speed Manual