Wednesday 29th July 2015
Subscribe to Motor Sport Magazine's Jaguar newsletter to get the latest cars right to your inbox.
Car listed at $87500 (currency conversions are approximate).
1954 Jaguar XK120 DHCs/n 678359 Eng. No. F3028-8Old English White with Red LeatherFollowing World War II, the economically battered United Kingdom staggered back into the global industrial market by hurriedly rushing warmed over prewar cars into production. Thus, the entirely new and thoroughly modern XK 120 was a genuinely earth-shattering car, a truly contemporary and avant-garde car to boost the morale of Britons, and demonstrate to the world the resiliency of the United Kingdom. Introduced in 1948 as a concept car to showcase Jaguar`s remarkable new twin-cam inline-6 cylinder engine, the XK 120 was never intended to go into full scale production. However, its breathtaking, swoopy, and beautiful styling as well as its genuine 120 mph performance (not to mention the surprisingly affordable price) captured the imagination of the public, and the largely hand-built aluminum-bodied car was rushed into limited production. Jaguar was selling as many as they could make, so the car was reengineered as necessary to switch to mass production with steel bodies. Though the roadster was the first model, the drophead coupe preserved the open air experience, but added the convenience and luxury of wood dashboard and door caps, windup windows, external door handles, quarter windows, and proper insulated top. Detailed notes courtesy of the owner: General Information:Model: Jaguar 3.4L XK120Body Style: Drop Head CoupéSpecification: Left hand DriveVIN/Chassis Number: 678359Engine Number: F3028-8Body Number: P2624Color, Exterior CreamInterior RedHood BlackDate Built: 24 May 1954Date Dispatched: 31 May 1954Main Distributor: R.M. OverseasFurther Notes: Car was exported to Steven Hornburg, the U.S. West Coast Distributor in Los Angeles, and has always resided in California. It currently has California black and yellow license plates, that date to 1963. Except for periods of maintenance and major repairs, this has been a running vehicle from new. Since I purchased it in April 1988, this vehicle has been highly reliable and a strong performer.Along the way, I introduced a number of improvements to the car that do not take away from its originality or its value. One such improvement is the optional 16” steering wheel that makes driving the car a more comfortable experience for a 6’4” driver like myself.All numbers (VIN, Engine, Body and Gearbox) and colours match those originally specified at the Browns Lane factory, and I have the certificate from the Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust to verify this.In 1997, I began the process of a ‘staged’ restoration, in which virtually every area of the car was attended to and restored over a period of more than 10 years. I completely rebuilt the engine in 2006, sparing no expense and adding some improvements (see below). Since the no-expense spared rebuild, the engine has about 500 miles on it, and it idles and runs smoothly and strong.In late 2007, I had extensive bodywork completed (the car has never been in a collision, and the panels were largely in fine shape, but there was deterioration in the trunk area that needed attention, and I decided to have the work done properly). Following this, the car underwent a complete repaint matching the original cream colour, using Spies Hecker Permacron acrylic urethane.SOME PERTINENT DETAILS (ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AVAILABLE ON REQUEST.MECHANICSEngine:Complete Rebuild in 2006. All machine work performed by Star Machine, Emeryville, CA. Cylinder Head – Machine work – light resurfacing (head has only been surfaced twice in its life, both times lightly). Cylinder head water jackets aluminum welded (1994, by Dennis Etcheverry, Berkeley, CA). Valve seats reground. Exhaust valve seats removed, seat housing machine to accommodate larger, 1 5/8” exhaust valves (as used in C Type and B type head, as well as all E Type cylinder heads). Exhaust valve seats replaced with hardened seats to accommodate lead-free fuel and higher combustion chamber temperatures.- new intake and exhaust valves- all new inner and outer exhaust valve springs- new E type exhaust valve spring seats- bronze phosphorous valve guides and new intake valve seals- new cam bearings- all new cyl head-to-intake manifold studs- intake manifold carburetor ports machined to 2” to accommodate larger 2” H8 or HD8 carburetors for future fitting- all new gaskets- aluminum cam covers, intake manifold, breather cover, and carburetor dashpots polished by Electro-Forming, Richmond, CA- exhaust manifolds reporcelained, with new studsLower End –Block boiled and cleaned. Top of block resurfaced for trueness. Main bearing journals cut and line bored for trueness. Connecting rods resized with new bushings. Crankshaft plugs removed, crank cleaned, and new plugs installed. Crankshaft bored and polished to -.010” on both main and rod journals. Cylinders bored to -.030”. Timing cover and oil sump (both original) milled to accept E Type neoprene front main seal, to replace original rope seals, and eliminate any oil leakage from front seal area.- new AE +.030” 4-ring aluminum pistons and rings- new Vandervell +010” rod and main bearings and thrust washers- new upper and lower timing chains- new lower chain tensioner blade and spring - rebuilt crankshaft dampener (Damper Doctor, Redding, CA)- new crankshaft pulley- rebuilt water pump- new connecting rod nuts and bolts- new Dorman copper three-piece core plugs- new upper and lower hoses- all new gasketsOther engine-related – - installation of reduction gear starter for greater reliability (original Lucas starter is included)- new clutch (pressure plate, disc, T/O bearing).- new pilot bushing- 10” electric ‘push’ fan installed in front of radiator to assist engine cooling during long idle periods in traffic- All new engine, torque, and transmission mounts- new Bell stainless steel exhaust systemBrakes and Chassis –- all new brake linings. Front linings replaced with ‘friction materials semi-metallic linings. (As brake drums heat up, stopping power is unaffected. In fact, it improves.)- new rear brake cylinders- front cylinders machined and brass sleeved (White Post Restorations, White Post, VA)- new tandem brake master cylinder- handbrake assembly disassembled, cleaned, rechromed (where necessary), reinstalled, and adjusted.- Front anti-roll bar modified to offer greater stiffness; new bushings installed- new Koni front shock absorbers- rebuilt rear shock absorber links- rebuilt rear (Girling) lever shocks (Apple Hydraulics, NY)- new rear spring leather gaitersBody and InteriorNote: So far as I am aware, based on visual inspection, information from the previous owner dating to 1974, and the extensive work I’ve had completed on the car, this vehicle has never been in a collision, nor has it experienced serious body damage. At various times, small dings and slight parking lot dents accumulated. Convertible Top (1997)- new convertible top (black Robbins Sunfast)- new grey wool broadcloth headliner, and new pad- all new wooden top bows, including mahogany head bows- top frame removed, bead blasted, and painted- top accessories components (latches, etc.) chrome plated where appropriate- new (from Bill Tracy) ‘racetrack’ solid chrome and glass rear windowBody and Paint (2007) - extensive metalwork done to clean edges and remove dents. 43 hours of bodywork went into the rear trunk area, where the old spare tire tray was cut out, and a new one installed; rear fenders were removed, and extensive work performed to clean out light corrosion in inner fenders behind door shutfaces, and new fender securing studs behind shutfaces were installed.- drip rails and plates on both sides (outside) of the windshield metal were replaced with new, and associated grinding and sanding to remove surface corrosion.- entire car sanded and prepped- convertible top was removed and entire car painted with single stage Spies-Hecker Wimbledon White paint. This color is a match for the original ‘cream’ from the factory.- brand new windscreen glass (XK’s Unlimited), new OEM windshield rubber gasket, and rechromed brass windscreen frame.- As required, bright metal has been rechromedInterior (2008-2009) – most materials and finished pieces supplied by SNG Barrett, UK and USA- new red leather (per Connolly specs) seat covers and console cover, with new red mocquette and new seat cushion foam and console base- new red Wilton wool carpets- new high grade red vinyl trim pieces all around, including battery box cover and trunk area- new red hardura trunk mat- new door panels with red vinyl covering, professionally trimmed- Side dash pieces replaced with new (Baltic birch plywood, and burled walnut veneer, finished in polished urethane).- center (instrument cluster) dash piece is original, but refinished. All work completed by a professional auto wood refinisher.- new dash drawer- convertible top side burled walnut wood pieces professionally refinished.- new windshield washer assembly (squirters, all hosing, bottle and vacuum pump assembly, and dash switch).- new reproduction, optional 16” steering wheel (standard equipment wheel is 17”)- new horn button and chrome baseConvertible Top Envelope (2011)- new chromed brass pinbeading, supplied by Bassett’s Jaguar, Wyoming, RI.- new mohair convertible top hood/envelope purchased from SNG Barratt.- installation of pinbeading and hood/envelope completed by Sid’s Classic Auto Upholstery, Mountain View, CA
Meet the 180mph dog-carrier that's blessed with many other fine features