The Jaguar S-type 3.4 and 3.8

Years 1963-68
See also Jaguar 420 Best described as the 4.2 liter S-Type with the newer 4 headlamp front styling of the MK X/420G models
Notes To fill the market gap between the Mk II and the top of the range MK X, Jaguar conceived the S-type. It was based on the MK II, but the rear was given similar styling to the larger Mk X, and it was fitted with the independent rear suspension that had been developed for the E-Type and MK X. Duel fuel tanks were fitted inside each rear fender. The car is best described as a MK II with a MK X like rear, even though no panels are actually interchangable. Slimmer MK X style bumpers were fitted front and rear, later also to be incorporated in the 240/340 revision of the MK II. Engine sizes of 3.4 and 3.8 litres were offered, the 2.4 would have been inappropriate (and way underpowered) in this more uplevel offering.
In  1967 the specification was "cheapened" in the same way as the MKII and ambla (plastic) upholstery was substituted for the original leather. At the same time the previouly standard equipment fog lamps were deleted, and replaced by the dummy round horn grilles often found on Jaguars of this period.

The S-type was marketed as a more "executive" car than the MKII, and although the interior appointments were similar there were a number of detail differences. The seats were different (and lacked the picnic tables which were a feature of the MKII),  and the dash center section (click for comparison) was covered in walnut instead of the black leather of the MKII.  The different roofline and seats gave more rear seat leg and headroom, and the independent rear suspension gave a much smoother ride than the live axle of the MK II models. All this was at the expense of extra weight, and softened performance however, when compared to the like engined Mk II's.

It is thought that originally the S-type was to have been the MK II's replacement - the MK III, but several reasons are put forward by historians to explain the fact that it was given a different name, and marketed alongside the MK II, and did not replace it. These are firstly that the MK II was still selling well, and secondly that the S-type was seen more as an alternative to the slow selling MK X in territories where this was not selling well. This is also borne out by the way the S-type itself evolved into the 420, although again all models remained on sale and were eventually phased out at about the same time.   The overlap between models in the 1960s was considerable, and some territories such as the USA did not import all models in order to avoid confusion. For example in the early 60's the models on sale in America were the MK II 3.8, the MK X, and of course the XKE.   When the S-Type was introduced, only the 3.8 model was imported into the States, and the MK II 3.4 was substituted for the 3.8 model. .

MKIIvS.jpg (21577 bytes)
Front end styling (MKII on left compared to S-type on the right). Note the difference in headlight trims, foglight treatment, side lanps and indicators and thicker surround of the grille on the S-type. The S-type also had the MK X inspired slim bumpers which also later appeared on the 240/340 versions of the MKII. The "peaks" over the headlamps were a styling feature from the MK X, which were to become a feature of all new Jaguar models from this time on. They next appeared on the 420 and the XJ6.  One explanation of this feature is that it made the front of the car appear longer from the side view, and helped to balance the increased length of the back of the car.
Description 4 door sedan (saloon)
Colors See the compact sedan colors page
Model Engine Bore/Stroke Power
3.4 3442cc 6 cyl twin overhead camshaft 83 x 106 mm 210 bhp @ 5550 rpm
3.8 3781cc 6 cyl twin overhead camshaft 87 x 106 mm 220 bhp @ 5500 rpm
3.4 Twin SU HD6 1 3/4 inch
3.8 Twin SU HD6 1 3/4 inch
Both engines are versions of the Jaguar XK type DOHC inline 6
Brakes 4 wheel discs

(Various sources differ, slightly)
3.4 9830 - 10036
3.8 15060 - 15135
Total 24890 - 25171
3.4 3580 pounds   (for comparison the MK II 3.4 is 3304 pounds)
3.8 3690 pounds   (for comparison the MK II 3.8 is 3360 pounds)
Length 15 feet 7 inches
Height 4 feet 7 3/4 inches 
Width 5 feet 6 1/2 inches 
Top speed 115 mph (3.4), 120 mph (3.8)  (figures for manual cars with overdrive)
Wheelbase 107.375 inches
Transmission 4-speed manual. Overdrive optional. Also available, Borg Warner 3 speed automatic.
Front Independent. Coil springs, wishbones and anti-roll bar
Rear Independent, lower wishbones, radius arms and coil springs.
Chassis Numbers
Additional codes with number
DN suffix means car is fitted with overdrive
BW suffix means car is fitted with automatic gearbox
P prefix  means car is fitted with power steering
example P1B1455DN - a 3.4 liter car fitted with power steering and overdrive
3.4 1B1001 to 1B9665 (RHD)
1B25001 to 1B26371 (LHD)
3.8 IB50001 to 1B59717 (RHD)
1B75001 to 1B80418 (LHD)
What is thought to be the lowest surviving serial number (1B50004 BW) 3.8S is in New Zealand. You can read details of this amazing find on the website of its owner, Stephen Smith.
Engine Numbers See the compact sedans engine number page
Do you own or know of an S-Type? If so, please register it with the International S-Type registry. .
Standard Equipment Leather upholstery, Limited slip differential on 3.8 model (Optional on 3.4)
Options Automatic transmission, overdrive, wire wheels (stove enamel or chrome plated),  Power Steering, various radios, heated rear window,   Sunroof,  Special paint colors were available.
Jaguar 3.4S
j34s.jpg (16769 bytes)
Note the MK X  inspired rear end. Instead of the MK II's circular wheel spats, the S-Type features a flattened wheel arch with no spats.The rear window is larger, the roof line is higher at the rear, and independent suspension replaces the live axle of the MKII