You could buy a modern supercar for what this Jag costs, but you wouldn't look anywhere near as cool.
Jaguar is building just nine examples of its continuation XKSS, and they aren’t exactly inexpensive at a million pounds each ($1.25 million at current exchange rates). Even if you have the money all of them already have buyers. Now, one is visiting Jay Leno’s Garage. If you couldn’t get an invite to the roadster's private debut in the United States last week at the Petersen Museum, then this is the next best thing.
In 1957, Jaguar took 25 examples of its Le Mans-winning D-Type race cars and converted them for road use. The resulting model was the XKSS. Unfortunately, a fire ravaged the factory after the company produced 16 of them. The firm never completed the final nine – until now.
The modern examples are exactly like the originals other than some minor details like the coating for the fuel tank. Jaguar even managed to track down an original, unused D-Type engine block and took measurements from it for building the new powerplants. The company also painted the magnesium alloy body in the appropriate Sherwood Green, too.
A team of three people spend three months building each continuation XKSS. The company estimates that building one requires 10,000 man-hours.
Leno gets a thorough tour around the new XKSS, and he’s repeatedly surprised by how modern the roadster is despite practically 60 years passing. These vehicles have a reputation as being among the first supercars, and it’s easy to see why after checking out all the details.
Unfortunately, Leno doesn’t get to drive this one. We only get to hear it start up. However, he does offer a brief view of him driving Steve McQueen’s XKSS on loan from the Petersen Museum. McQueen’s example has a slightly modified body for meeting the actor’s exact specifications, but the feeling behind the wheel should be the same.