10 British Cars to Drive Before You Die

  Calvin Fisher


 13 Nov, 2018

1995 McLaren F1 GTR

Sure, nowadays you’re spoilt with exotic metal from the land of tea and cucumber sandwiches thanks to the likes of the McLaren 720S, Aston Martin DB11 and the Rolls-Royce Dawn. But we remember them when they were analogue, characterful, green… Well, at least Calvin Fisher does.

10) Land Rover Defender

Specifically the Series I, bereft of the Defender name. Born from the ashes of the second World War, these jeeps were the original SUV.

9) Rolls-Royce Phantom

Massive yet imposing, elegant yet cathedral-like, and that’s before BMW came along and added ostentatiousness to it and with it, arguably, some vulgarity and chintz

8) Jaguar XJ6

A bruising six cylinder saloon with marshmallows for suspension and the whiff of nicotine surrounding them. These were the cars of cads. We all wanted one.

7) MGB

Not my cup of tea if I’m honest, but to deny its place here is to pretend that British roadsters were never A Thing. But they were. They just were.

6) Original Mini Cooper

Now this, this I had. A plucky 1100 in British Racing Green no less. Mind you, it might have been avocado. This, Sir Alec Issigonis masterpiece, is the egenesis of the front wheel drive hatchback. Bow accordingly.

5) Jaguar XJ220

The Jaguar XJ220 was the first unobtanium we can remember. It was the quickest car in the world despite being diluted when going into production. From a 4WD V12 in the concept to the twin-turbo 3.5l V6 that made it to the road. Magic.

4) Lotus Elise

Colin Chapman said add lightness, and his boys and girls at LOTUS promptly did just. The Elise proved that LOTUS did not stand for Lots Of Trouble, Usually Serious, and instead began to be associated with incredibly nimble machinery that could punch far above their weight.

3) Aston Martin DB5