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Jaguar XK120

Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120
Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120Jaguar XK120
Lot number 122
Hammer value N/S (est. £65,000 - £68,000)
Description Jaguar XK120
Registration AEN 482
Year 1950
Colour Red
Engine size 3,400 cc
Chassis No. 660405
Engine No. W2604-7

Jaguar's first post-war sports car, the XK120 roadster was conceived and designed in a matter of months, primarily to act as a showcase for the marque's new XK engine. Shown at the 1948 Earls Court Motorshow in the dark days of rationing, it caused such a sensation that William Lyons was forced to put it into production right away.

Arrestingly beautiful, the first cars had handbuilt aluminium bodies on an ash frame, but by 1950 a more mass production version with a pressed steel body with alloy doors, bonnet and boot had been developed. A fixed head version was launched in 1951, followed by a drophead in 1953. Just 12,780 Jaguar XK120s were produced before it was replaced by the larger XK140 in October 1954, most in left-hand drive, of which 7,614 were roadsters.

The chassis was a strong box-section affair with independent torsion-bar front suspension, a leaf-sprung 'live' rear axle and hydraulic drum brakes. Power came from the now legendary XK twin-overhead cam 3.4-litre straight-six engine, developing 160bhp and giving the car a genuine 120mph top speed, making it the fastest production car of its day – hence the XK120 name.

In 1952 Stirling Moss and three other drivers famously drove a virtually standard XK120 around the banked track at Montlhery for seven days and nights on end, clocking up an average speed of 100.31mph before driving the car back to London with no problems whatsoever.

As its accompanying Heritage Certificate confirms, this particular car retains its matching numbers and was dispatched from the works in December 1950 to a Mr. P Taylor who purchased it through Carrs of Bolton. The file of paperwork also includes a bill of sale from 1967 when one of its four previous owners bought it for the princely sum of £325!

At some time in its life, it is reputed to have passed through the hands of respected marque specialists J D Classics and also spent some time on Jersey. Originally supplied in bronze with biscuit upholstery, it was repainted red during a restoration which is detailed in a series of photographs on file.

The vendor has recently fitted a set of chrome wire wheels, acquired a new set of side screens and a fitted a Guy Broad solid bush steering kit, reporting that “it goes really well and feels great on the road”. Supplied with FIVA papers dating from 2010, matching number right hand drive XK120 Roadsters are few and far between, the vendor informing us that this well presented car "is in very good useable condition".


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