1950 Jaguar XK120 Roadster
- Early-production car with desirable “discs and spats”
- Matching-numbers example, as per its JDHT Certificate
- Award-winning older restoration by a marque specialist
- Includes side curtains, original tool roll, and owner’s handbook
In the aftermath of WWII, Jaguar Cars owner William Lyons created a new class of sports car, one that was faster, more reliable, better looking, and less expensive than any comparable vehicle on the market. This car was designated the XK120, with the “120” referring to the car’s top speed, and it cemented Jaguar’s stature as having the world’s fastest production car. The XK120 started from a clean slate and also featured the world’s first high-volume, twin-cam engine. A short-wheelbase chassis and a voluptuous two-seater roadster body was married to the powerful new engine, and the result—a car that was sleek, beautiful, and strikingly modern—was nothing less than sensational.
The XK120 offered here is a highly desirable early-production example that features disc wheels and rear fender skirts, or spats, which typify the original design in its purest form. Other items particular to early 120s include a chrome-plated convertible top frame and chrome around both the seat frames and wing-mounted parking lights.
This Jaguar, a matching-numbers and highly original car to begin with, was the subject of a comprehensive body-off restoration by marque specialist Steven Helms, of Classic Motorcars in Reading, Pennsylvania. The work included rebuilding its engine and transmission to factory specification. The restoration was completed in 1992 and photo-documented with before and after images of its bare chassis and dozens of other images. Upon completion, it was immediately judged at 99.72 points at its first JCNA outing. Following several other accolades, the Jaguar received its AACA Senior National Award in 1994.
This car, which has been stored in a climate-controlled garage, has been virtually unused since its restoration, with fewer than 350 miles showing, and it has recently received a freshening at Classic Motorcars. Helms reports his astonishment at how well the car has held up for over 20 years, and he deems it still show-worthy to this day. In addition to a thorough detailing, a complete tuning regimen was performed, including the often necessary fuel service, which entailed having the gas tank removed and flushed.
Importantly, the XK120 retains its original side curtains, which have been unused since the restoration and still look smart. Other items of note include the complete original tool roll, tire pump, jack, and owner’s handbook. The car also includes the removal/installation tool for the attractive fender skirts.
This XK120 would perfectly complement the desires of any collector seeking the rewards of owning a fantastic example of the post-war Jaguar that raised the bar significantly for production sports cars and became an enduring legend at the same time.