1954 Jaguar XK-120SE
Classic European Sports Car
My search for a blue chip 120 OTS remained fruitless for many years. That was, until I purchased this example from Alain DeCadenet. Many of you know Alain from the phenomenal series "Victory by Design". Alain reports this 120 was found in a garage in California, parked for 20+ years after being hidden by its previous owner during his divorce. An original, unrestored car registered on California vintage blue plates "XK120SS", it has been a lifetime resident of the car friendly west coast.
I had the car delivered to Milwaukee and was thrilled with what arrived - a virtual time-capsule 120 with not a spec of rust or prior repair. And talk about an ultimate specification for a 120 - a true last year (1954) real Special Equipment (SE) car with painted wire wheels, factory dual exhaust, C-Type head, etc. Even the original leather wrap was on the rear leaf springs. All of the Jaguar experts that have viewed the car are simply blown away by the correctness and condition of this fine specimen.
If you love originality like I do, you'll appreciate this 120. The paint is highly presentable, but also tired. She won't win a concours but the patina is magnificent and there is no question this car is the real deal. The red interior is original with the exception of the seat, which was recovered years ago and is honestly "too nice" for the car. A little use will cure that. The top is a ridiculous 1960's white vinyl job that needs to be thrown out, but if you're like me, it will never get put up anyway so why bother? The side curtains are in the trunk, as are the tools, jack, etc. The grille has a few loose teeth, and the carpet has two mouse holes. Mechanically it starts on the button and purrs like a proper cat should. The factory automatic choke works perfectly, as does every other light, switch and component. We just gave the car a comprehensive "going over" and in the process installed a new set of proper reproduction Dunlop Road Speed tires (tyres?); a pair of new 6V batteries; a complete brake job including all new shoes, hydraulics, hoses, etc.; full valve and timing chain adjustment; new SU fuel pump; tune up; rebuilt the steering box and complete front suspension including all rubber bushings, ball joints, tie rod ends, etc.; fully serviced the cooling system and installed new Kevlar reinforced hoses; and basically left no stone (or bolt?) unturned to make sure this 120 is mechanically 100%. Nothing sounds like a finely tuned XK six with a proper low-restriction SE exhaust! The best part about this 120 is that unlike most shiny "show cats," this one actually runs and drives like only a properly sorted, never apart, truly well cared for ORIGINAL 120 can. Just like the baseball gloves we had as kids, there is no substitute for age and use to break something in and make it enjoyable to play with!
Private Collection - Not For Sale