Lot 355: Jaguar XK120 Roadste
3,442 cc DOHC inline six-cylinder engine, five-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension with transverse wishbones, elongated torsion bars and anti-roll bar, rigid rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel drum brakes. Wheelbase: 2,590 mm (102") " Concours quality restoration; only 240 kilometres since completion " Getrag five-speed manual transmission and alloy radiator for enhanced driving performance " Complete with Heritage Certificate The XK120 made its début at the Earl's Court Motor Show in 1948, creating nothing short of a sensation in the automotive world. Originally conceived as a low-volume car rather than a serious production vehicle, it was destined to become a formidable competitor and one of the most celebrated sports cars of all time. A total of 12,055 XK120s were produced from 1948 to 1954, including 7,374 steel-bodied roadsters. This was Jaguar's first modern envelope body with integral wings and a newly designed chassis with torsion bar front suspension. The elegant, curvaceous styling was the work of Sir William Lyons, who took his inspiration from Touring's Mille Miglia BMW 328. The name resulted from the 120 mph (193 km/h) top speed attained by the prototypes. It was offered in roadster, coupé and drophead coupé body styles, throughout the model run. Trendsetting nearly 60 years ago, the car remains a milestone vehicle on either side of the Atlantic today. This Old English Ivory example is fitted with a stunning two-tone crimson and biscuit interior and comes complete with a Jaguar Heritage Certificate. It has been restored to concours quality standards, having travelled just 240 kilometres since restoration. The body was taken off the chassis and the car benefits from new alloy rear wings, as well as doors and a boot lid. Retaining its left-hand drive configuration, it has been modified for enhanced driving performance, with a Getrag 5-speed manual transmission and four-pot brake callipers, whilst the engine has been balanced and lightened, flowed and ported, and benefits from 5.08 cm SU carburettors and an alloy radiator. With excellent performance, handling and balance, XK120s are wonderful driver's cars and an absolute joy to manoeuvre in the corners. This example is sure to offer its next enthusiast owner those same thrills, be it around town or along the Cote d'Azur.
RM Auctions, The Grimaldi Forum, Monaco
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