1951 JAGUAR XK 120 SPORTS ROADSTER
Chassis No. 660773
British racing green with saddle tan leather interior.
Engine: six cylinder in line, 3,422cc, c190bhp at 5,250rpm; Gearbox: four speed manual; Suspension: front, independent with double wishbones and longditudinal torsion bars, rear, live rear axle, semi-elliptic leaf springs; Brakes; four wheel drum. Right hand drive.
The fine reputation of the XK 120 far exceeds the small numbers in which it was built. Its original conception was little more than a test bed for the new twin cam engine devised by Bill Heynes whilst on Coventry fire-watching duties on the roof of the SS Jaguar car plant in the later stages of World War II. However, its appearance at the 1948 Earls Court Motor Show was met with hundreds of people clamoring to own one of the most seductive and rapid cars of the era. Instead of the few hand-built cars intended, Jaguar had to tool up for serious production.
Competition successes and the 126.45mph (133.5mph without windscreen) achieved by "Soapy" Sutton on the Belgian Autoroute all served to increase the demand for the car which did not become available until the 1950s. Even then the world export demand was so great that the first home market sales, in any quantity, did not materialize until 1951.
This superb concours example has been in the same ownership since 1978. When purchased by the current owner the car was dismantled and required a lengthy restoration. It was at this stage that it was decided to rebuild the car into its present "racing" form. Between 1979 and 1988 the owner campaigned the car in many VSCCA and SCCA events at circuits such as Watkins Glen, Limerock and Bryar Motorsport, Louden, NH. From 1982 the car also embarked on a long and successful period of shows starting with a best in class and 96.95 points. In 1988 the owner decided to retire from racing events and again embarked upon a further nut and bolt rebuild to enable the car to be a serious concours contender. The car was painstakingly restored by professionals to produce the stunning vehicle seen today. A large file of the work and invoices accompany this vehicle, not to mention the countless hours put in by the owner himself! To win prizes at JCNA (Jaguar Club Of North America) events and beat your fellow competitors requires outstanding dedication. The resulting vehicles are virtually faultless
Equipment on this XK120 roadster follows the specifications carried out by the Jaguar works teams and keen racing privateers in the early 1950s such as: an upgraded C Type Jaguar cylinder head, an original set of the large 2" sand cast SU H 8 racing carburettors, an ATL fuel cell is fitted with a quick release filler cap on the rear and racing aero screens and competition C Type bucket seats and steering wheel. The bonnett has cooling louvers in the top and the car is finsished with polished Borrani wire wheels fitted with the correct new Dunlop RS5 tires. The car comes with both its original windscreen and bumpers.
In recent Concours events this car has proven itself a worthy contender for outright honors in its class. Some notable results in JCNA events include:
1993 Class 15 National Champions 2nd Place Winner at 99.72333
1993 Biennial National 3rd Place Winner at 99.52000
1994 Class 15 National Champions 3rd Place Winner at 99.91333
1994 Class 15 Best in Class and Judges choice at 99.90000
As these results suggest should the new owner wish to continue to show the car, with a little more work this vehicle could be a contender for the National Champion award. Alternatively, the new owner may wish to return it to the race track? Finished in British Racing Green with tan leather upholstery and to racing specification this is truly a magnificient Jaguar. It could be an ideal entrant for the very many retrospective touring events held in both Europe and the USA.