JLR puts down $170M to pick up 543 classics

Jaguar Land Rover's newly formed Special Vehicle Operations unit may have blown a big hole its budget for the year with the $170 million purchase of Britain's largest classic car collection. The 543 antique and classic cars assembled by British dentist and entrepreneur James Hull include more than 130 old Jaguars, Daimlers and other vehicles associated with both brands.

Combined with the 120 classics in the Jaguar Heritage collection, the company now has one very large garage full of old cars. After Jaguar's historic Browns Lane plant in the British Midlands was sold and demolished, the Heritage cars were loaned to museums.

Jaguar Land Rover is building a new facility on the old Browns Lane property where it will maintain its classic collection as well as offer restoration services to owners of the company's vintage vehicles. No word yet where all the company's classic vehicles eventually will be housed.