Me and My Car: Sporty Jag proves great fit
Murray Crane is founder of Crane Brothers tailors and Jaguar's first New Zealand ambassador
What are you driving?
It’s an XFR, an important distinction. The R stands for racing, which is, after all, part of the Jaguar DNA. It’s black and is the latest model. The XF is the perfect blend of car for me. The sport features married with functionality is a nice mix. It is a bit less obvious and it doesn’t scream midlife crisis.
And you’ve designed a suit for customers who buy XFs?
I designed the suit to celebrate my role as Jaguar’s first New Zealand ambassador. It’s a modern take on a classic pinstripe and uses a luxury fine worsted wool from British cloth merchants Dugdales. XF customers will be able to choose from a wide range of cloth and I’ll personally fit their suits.
As the owner of a contemporary tailor, how important is the design factor when you choose a car?Design, the form and function of things is extremely important in all aspects of my life, whether it’s something as small as a pen or as significant as a motor vehicle.
Who else is allowed to drive your XF?
Just me. Cars are very personal, especially when they are as responsive as the XF. You know when it’s been messed with.
How often is it cleaned?
I get it groomed probably on average twice a week. I like clean cars and being black it’s virtually impossible to keep clean. I’ve always had black cars and always found them the hardest to keep clean.
What do you always have in your car?
Coathanger, USB charger, torch, umbrella, coins for parking. I don’t have any fluffy toys, maps (the XF has a great nav system), CDs, wrappers or sports gear.
Part shares in a Mk2 Zephyr whilst at school. I think I had shares in the back seat which is where I spent the most time.
Your dream car …
E Type Jaguar. I will have one some day.
Favourite car scene for a movie?
There are so many: top 3 would be Bullitt, Ronin and The Bourne Identity. Bullitt because it’s Steve McQueen and Ronin for the sheer speed.
Favourite car colour?
Black. Henry Ford got that much right.
Who taught you to drive?
My father mostly. One of the benefits of growing up in the country was paddocks and lots of open space. I was driving on farms from age 10 and learned to drive in a manual. I can also double declutch, a lost art these days.
Do you prefer manual or automatic?
Manual, it’s more of a driving experience. The XF has a ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox and paddle shift, which is as good if not better than a stick.
Most memorable road trip?
South Island roads are hard to beat. I feel that’s when you can really experience any car to its maximum potential.
And what do you listen to in your car?
If I am commuting I always have the radio playing; on longer and faster drives I tend to like the silence combined with the sound of the car on the road.
What’s a great day trip out of Auckland?
There are a few. I like the drive to Kaiaua for fish and chips or down to Coromandel for a weekend away.
What irritates you most about other drivers?
Indecisive drivers annoy me, as do drivers who cannot parallel park or don’t indicate.
If you could change one road rule in New Zealand?
The speed limit. There are definitely roads that could be made faster (and some that should be limited).
Auckland’s traffic congestion? What is your take on it?
It’s one of the side-effects of living in a big city, so deal with it. There are a heap of improvements that can be made: rail makes perfect sense to me. I think the key with any public transport offer is reliability.
— As told to Donna McIntyre