The XK-120 was produced from 1948 to 1954. The motoring public in 1948 was totally unprepared for the new style and performance brought forth by Sir William Lyons and Jaguar Cars Ltd. The engine was a six-cylinder, 3.4 liter block equipped with a chain-driven double overhead camshaft and twin SU carburetors.
By 1951, a Special Equipment package was offered by Jaguar to satisfy new owners who wanted a more competitive automobile. This raised the standard compression ratio from 7:1 to 8:1 by using newly designed pistons. The SE package also included a lighter flywheel, stiffer springs and modified electrical components.
The superb styling and innovative engineering makes the XK-120 one of the most sought after Jaguars. The Roadster was introduced in 1949 and the Drophead Coupe (DHC) made its debut in 1953. According to Nigel Thorley in his “Jaguar the Complete Works” there were a grand total of 12,055 XK-120’s that left the factory. Of these, 7,612 were Roadsters and 1,765 were Drophead Coupes. The top speed was 120 MPH and the four speed manual transmission would move an XK 120 from 0-60 in 7.5 seconds.
The XK 120 DHC we are offering for sale is a lovely example of this rare, convertible version of the XK 120. Offered as an alternative to the OTS variant, the XK 120 DHC offered much less of a sportscar feel and more comfort for its passengers.
This particular XK120 DHC was imported in France in the late 1980s. The then owner was a Jaguar enthusiast and restored many models. In 2007, he decided to part with the car. At this point, this XK 120 was in good condition, only in need of a thorough engine service and soft top replacement.
While in the current owner’s care, these two points were addressed by the installation of a brand new soft top. The engine was overhauled as well by a very good vintage car specialist. Last but not least, two seats in the style of the early E-Types were installed for a better side support. The original seats are also available.
As a 20+ year restoration, this XK 120 DHC requires some cosmetic care to be brought to concourse condition. The enthusiast will be delighted to use it « as-is, » since the car shows a lovely patina and is in perfect working order.
As the rarest variant of the XK 120, the Drophead Coupe offers the comfort features of the FHC Coupe version, coupled with the obvious drop-top desirability. This XK 120 is available in France with its French registration.