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Jaguar XK120 (2) … A British jewel 💎💎💎
(1950, Jaguar XK120 The short story – extracts: The Jaguar XK 120 actually began life as an experimental coupe – the “100” – built in 1938 with the same long hood and sloping tail. But after WW2 it was modernised with the familiar oval grille and faired-in headlights, which it also had when it was launched as a “testbed”/showcar aka “The new Jaguar XK120”, at the London Motor Show in 1948. The crowd were simply flabbergasted by its combined jaw-dropping beauty, with its swooping and curvaceous styling and promised astonishing performance in equal parts. The founder and Chairman, Sir William Lyons, quickly decided to put it into production, since it was pretty clear to him, that here they had a winner 👍
So the Jaguar XK120 was then produced from 1949 to 1954. It is a “sports-touring”, front-engine, rear wheel drive car that was available in roadster (“Open Two-Seater” or OTS … like on my photos), fixed-head coupe (FHC), and later as a drop-head coupe (DHC).
Sir William Lyons initially intended the XK120 to be a low-volume, hand-build, aluminium-bodied sports car, but when the first 243 aluminium cars quickly were sold and the tooling was ready, he instructed that production was to continue, although using durable steel bodies, which were more cost effective.
The initial roadster was as mentioned followed by a fixed-head coupe in 1951 and a drop head coupe in 1953.
The “120” in the XK 120 OTS (Open Two Seater) was to signify the car’s top speed (in mph), 120 mp/h or 193 km/h, that it reached on a pre-production test making it the fastest production road car of its day. Its iron block aluminium head “XK” twin cam six was good for 160 hp in standard form, upwards of 210 hp in later models and 300 hp or more on the race track models and as another example: tThe standard XK120 could do 0-100 km/h in 9 seconds – pretty well done for that time🤘
Fast, beautiful and successful on the race track, to many the Jaguar XK 120 was the ultimate production sports car of the 1950s.
Disclaimer: I do not personally know the owner, so I can’t guarantee the originality of the car in the photos I’ve taken).