Jensen: the marque’s beginning

The Jensen marque started like many others: with a passion for motorcars, within a family concern, and almost a hundred years ago. Alan and Richard Jensen were based in Birmingham and that’s where they designed and built a body to attach to an Austin Seven chassis. It was 1928. That soon led to work on Standard chassis, and then servicing and selling cars as well as building custom bodies.

When the brothers joined W. J. Smith & Sons at Carters Green, West Bromwich, they probably did not know they would stay there for the next 35 years, eventually controlling the business and renaming it ‘Jensen Motors’. It was 1936.

Proper Jensen car production started in 1935 though, with the ‘White Lady’: an open tourer, with a Ford 3½ litre flathead V8. It was to mark the brothers’ penchant for all things V8.

Just before the war, Jensen Motors was tinkering with commercial vehicles, remaining busy during the worst years. In 1946 a Jensen PW was introduced, in the shape of a luxury saloon. Just a few were made in the austerity-ridden, post-war times.