We're used to seeing pristine machines on Jay Leno's Garage, but this week is all about the restoration work that comes before
Jay Leno’s garage is a wonderfully curated collection of classic and collectable vehicles from all eras. For petrol head’s it’s the golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory, with almost every car of note you could imagine. However, behind the halls of highly polished cars is the restoration shop, and that’s where the real magic happens.
For the latest episode of Jay Leno’s Garage, the man himself takes you behind the scenes to the workshop where his latest projects are being worked on. His skilled team of restorers maintain most of Mr Leno’s cars, but they are also responsible for bringing his latest, less than perfect, purchases back to life.
A car that is just about ready for its starring role in an episode of the show is a beautiful 1965 Jenson C-V8. This lightweight British sports car is one Jay has been searching for, and this example looks fantastic in a shade of inky blue. Underneath the fibreglass hood is a substantial Chrysler 383 motor, and it’s this combination of British chassis and American engine that made the car such an exciting prospect.
A car currently undergoing a ground-up restoration is a 1922 Wills Sainte Claire that Jay hopes to have running very soon. The huge chassis has now been painted a deep green, and its engine is in the final stages of reconstruction.
‘I’m really anxious to take this one for a ride, and we’re not that far out. It’ll probably be about four or five months after you see this restoration vlog, we’ll be driving this one.’
Something very special that’s currently lurking in the workshop is a 1958 Chrysler that features direct injection. Leno says that only a couple of examples made it out of the factory in period, and that even Chrysler experts sometimes deny their existence.
It’s also nice that a couple of the talented engineers of Jay’s shop get some screen time, as they are the ones that make it all happen. They are clearly very talented, restoring original cars or custom building parts that no longer exist.
There’s lots of great pre-war car action in this video, as well as the opportunity to see a side of Leno’s garage that we don’t usually spectate. Check it out!
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