Jaguar XK120 Roadster
The Jaguar XK120 Roadster is an integral part of Britain’s postwar automotive history. Following World War II, the blitz-battered United Kingdom was in more than a slump, rolling out rehashed prewar models, but Jaguar simply refused to follow suit.
Jaguar founder William Lyons initially intended to produce only 200 units of the XK120 before its legendary premiere at London’s 1948 Earl’s Court Motor Show, but destiny demanded otherwise. Faced with such overwhelming interest, Lyons altered the hand-formed aluminum body to one of all steel and then thrust the showstopper into mass production. Powered by a 3.4-liter, inline-six cylinder with 160 horsepower, XK120 proudly boasted a promised speed of 120 mph, as its name reflects. The roadster also featured the first high-volume twin cam engine, which would become the engine to power Jaguars for almost 40 years.
The XK120 would make history time and again. Designed as a sporty touring car, XK120 proved to have racing chops as well and won the Le Mans 24-hour race in 1951 and 1953. A true landmark for Jaguar, this is the model that garnered Jaguar the reputation for not only luxury but also respect in the world of road racing.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in August 2009 at the Portola Hotel & Spa and Monterey Conference Center, Monterey, California, in January of 2010 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona, in August of 2011 at the Portola Hotel & Spa and Monterey Conference Center, Monterey, California, in January of 2012 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona and in March of 2012 at the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, Florida.
160 hp, 3.4-liter six-cylinder engine with twin SU carburetion, four-speed manual transmission, front independent suspension and semi-elliptic rear suspension, Lockheed 2LS four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes Wheelbase: 102"
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Teddy Pieper