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Vehicle to be offered for Auction sale WITHOUT RESERVE and SOLD to the highest bidder August 13 – 15, 2015 at Russo and Steele’s 15th Annual Monterey, California Auction. Please contact us for more information.
From 1948 through 1954, the brilliant XK120 established Jaguar at the forefront of sports car manufacturers with its graceful lines, impressive performance, and sophisticated DOHC ‘XK’six-cylinder engine. While approximately 12,000 XK120s were built, its sound original design could easily be improved and updated. The refined XK140 arrived in late 1954 with comprehensive improvements – some derived from Jaguar’s racing program – that were designed to overcome the few shortcomings of its predecessor while maintaining Jaguar’s sales appeal, especially in the crucial U.S. sports-car market.
Among the upgrades applied to the XK140, most notable were the welcome addition of precise rack and pinion steering, improved brakes and engine cooling, plus greater cabin comfort and legroom, an improvement facilitated by the relocation of the car’s batteries. The most popular model in America remained the OTS (open two seater), otherwise known as the Roadster, and of the 3,350 XK140 roadsters built, only 49 were sold in England. Priced in the USA from $3,745, the cars continued to provide Jaguar’s characteristically excellent value for the money. While the basic 102-inch wheelbase remained unchanged, styling was subtly updated for the XK140, with the widely acclaimed basic design cues of the XK120 thankfully left intact.
Based on its serial number, S810008, this XK140 MC Roadster is a very early-production, original left-hand drive, U.S.-delivery example. Given that XK140 serial numbers for America-bound export models began from “810000,” this specific XK140 is one of the earliest cars of the series produced, with an October, 1954 production month, and it is consequently one of the earliest XK140s remaining in existence today. Further, the “S” prefix to its serial number indicates it was equipped when new with the top-line “MC” option, which comprised the “M” or “Special Equipment” package including a crankshaft vibration damper, wire-spoke wheels, dual exhaust pipes, and fog lamps. The “S” suffix to the serial number of its 8:1 compression engine denoted the car’s uprated 3.4-liter XK engine.
The Jaguar’s current owner, a Florida resident, acquired the car during January 2013 and as he purchased it, the car was already restored in 2011/2012 and equipped with a five-speed manual gearbox, nicely unlocking the powerful DOHC engine’s potential and providing relaxed cruising. Front disc brakes, an aluminum radiator, and other upgrades provide additional drivability and reliability. Featuring outstanding colors, this XK140 consistently draws admiration and never fails to draw attention wherever it goes.