1950 Jaguar XK120 OTS - Alloy
With its sensational launch in 1948, the XK120 clearly threw all the rules overboard. This model set the benchmark for the post-war sports car. The car brought a remarkable combination of "race car performance" and comfort that was then unseen for a production car. The XK120 was truly the founder of the success that made Jaguar one of the greatest car brands in the world.
Sir William Lyons realized in the mid-1940s that he needed to take big steps to make his company succeed as a major independent brand. The response to this challenge was to design his own engine. The Jaguar XK engine was the result. This engine was initially intended to be used in the stately Jaguar saloon models. The only problem was that these new models were not yet finished and Sir Lyons urgently needed a car to present his new engine in.
It was decided to build a limited series of sports cars. Jaguar saw it as something of a publicity stunt and had low expectations. Thus began the construction of the first XK120 models; a sports car consisting of an ash wood and steel frame with hand beaten aluminum bodywork. Against all Jaguars' expectations, the model hit like a bomb. Orders for the "fastest production car in the world" sold like hotcakes.
It soon became clear to Jaguar that a proper pressed-steel panel production line would have to be started to meet the high demand. Setting up this production took some time, and in May 1950 the very first steel XK120 models rolled off the assembly line. In the short period before the start-up of this line, Jaguar had nevertheless managed to build 242 "alloy-bodied" XK120s.
We at Marreyt Classic Cars are proud to offer one of these extremely rare Jaguars. Additionally, we are all the more proud that this example was restored at our workshop in 2016.
This 'alloy' Jaguar XK120 OTS left the production line at Jaguar in Foleshill, Coventry, on 18 January 1950. Executed in a classy colour combination of metallic silver with a red leather interior. For the soft top, mohair was chosen in gunmetal grey. On 1 February 1950, the car left for Jaguar dealer Max Hoffman in New York.
A few years back, we found this rarity in a garage of a Jaguar collector from the Netherlands. The car had been partially dismantled and was the perfect start to carry out a full restoration on it.
In our eyes, a unique opportunity to acquire a rare and important piece of Jaguar history.
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