The Jaguar XK120 remains an enduringly popular sports car. Manufactured by the Coventry-based British carmaker between 1948 and 1954, the XK120 is a highly desirable model. More than 70 years since the XK120 was first introduced at the 1948 London Motor Show, the car is still revered and adored all over the world. From its revolutionary speed - being the world’s fastest production car at the time - to the gorgeously elegant design of its bodywork, there are a wealth of reasons why the XK120 remains highly sought-after.
Explore below why the Jaguar XK120 is such a popular model, and look at a few of the different aspects that set this classic Jag apart from the rest…
With its curvaceous lines and pure beauty, the Jaguar XK120 launched at Earls Court and the motoring world, becoming an instant sensation, standing out from the rest with its gorgeous and practical bodyline. Originally built-in aluminium, Jaguar hadn’t anticipated the XK120’s public demand, which saw on 200 cars build with an aluminium body, before 1950 when the car was re-tooled into a steel body.
With all four wings enveloped and flowing exquisitely backwards to create a stunning streamlined appearance, the XK120 used and shortened a predecessor chassis, the Jaguar MKV saloon, pairing it with independent front suspension by torsion bars. Initially offered as a Roadster, the Fixed-Head Coupe and Drophead Coupe were made available 3 years into production as the popularity of the first XK grew.
At the front of the car, Lucas headlights are mounted inboard the wings, and a vertically-mounted oval grille is situated between the lights and a duo of wraparound chrome bumperettes.
The doors are cut down and merged into a tapered tail with vertical overrider-style bumpers, with rear wheel spats, the XK120 completes a gorgeous aerodynamic look. Overall, the XK120 is a magnificently beautiful car; it’s easy to see why so many have fallen in love with the car for decades.
The XK120’s sheer beauty isn’t the only reason why this car remains so steadfastly popular; its strong performance is another major reason for its unwavering admiration amongst enthusiasts. Only intended as a limited production model, the XK120 was fitted with Jaguar's new inline straight-six XK engine, designed by William Heynes. It was arguably the most advanced mass-produced power unit of the time, offering a 3.4-litre capacity, and was the first available Jaguar with twin overhead camshafts and hemispherical combustion chambers.
As one of the world’s fastest production cars at the time in the early 1950s, as the model’s name alludes to, the car could reach a speed of 120mph, mightily impressive at the time. With a power of 160bhp and a substantial 195 lb-ft of torque, the vehicle could also achieve a 0-60mph of just 10 seconds. Both are impressive results for a car of the time, and the top speed was even higher when the car was fitted with smaller, competition-derived ‘aero-screens’.
All in all, the Jag’s mechanical specifications were incredibly exciting and monumental. It’s no surprise that the XK engine went on to give Jaguar five wins at the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans racing event and was used throughout Jaguar models, which includes the equally iconic Jaguar E-type.
The Jaguar XK120 is a simply timeless and compelling car, packed with a plethora of attention-grabbing aspects. Stunningly beautiful and remaining as attractive today as it was over 70 years ago. To see an XK120 in the flesh is to view an omnipresent British motoring icon.
If you are searching for a Jaguar XK120 for sale, then DM Historics can assist you. We specialise in the sale of classic sports cars, with a dedicated specialism in classic Jaguars. Over the years, we have focused extensively on the Jaguar marque, selling and purchasing a number of pre-1980 Jaguar sports cars including the Jaguar XK’s, MK1, MK2 and the E-type models.
As part of our classic car sales, we provide a first-class experience and service for every single client. Our team has a proven track record and unrivalled knowledge in the market, so you’ll be in incredibly safe and trusted hands. What’s more, all of the handpicked classic cars that we offer have undergone rigorous inspections for quality before being displayed in our showroom. If you would like to discuss your classic car vehicle requirements and find out more, then please do not hesitate to contact us today.
You can reach our team today via the contact form on our website, or by calling us on 01732 440 494, alternatively, feel free to email us directly at email@example.com.