Curves worth R17 mil­lion

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

THE Jaguar Clas­sic en­gi­neer­ing team have rolled off their assem­bly floor the first gen­uine Jaguar XKSS to be built in almost 60 years a few weeks ahead of the pro­duc­tion sched­ule.

The me­chan­ics formed the mag­ne­sium al­loy bod­ies by hand over wooden bucks, which first had to be re- cre­ated. There are a few items not pe­riod cor­rect, like the petrol tank, which has been up­dated in the in­ter­ests of safety, and new cast iron blocks, but the 3,4- litre, dou­ble- over­head camshaft in­line- six, fed by a trio of We­ber DC03 car­bu­re­tors, still pushes this car to 160 km/ h in 14 sec­onds.

This is why XKSS is of­ten called the world’s first su­per­car, and was a road- go­ing con­ver­sion of the Le Mans- win­ning D- type, which was built from 1954- 1956.

In 1957, a fire de­stroyed nine cars ear­marked for ex­port to North Amer­ica at Jaguar’s Browns Lane fac­tory in the Bri­tish Mid­lands; with only 16 ex­am­ples of XKSS be­ing built. Jaguar an­nounced in March it would as­sem­ble the nine XKSS cars de­stroyed in the fire.

Eight months later, the first of the nine mod­els made its world de­but at the Petersen Mu­seum, Los An­ge­les.

Fin­ished in non- me­tal­lic Sher­wood Green paint, the XKSS still catches the eye of even mil­lenial kids who other­wise have no in­ter­est in cars.

Or as one cooed at the of­fice: “It is so curvy!”

Each of the nine cars will be com­pletely new, with pe­riod chas­sis num­bers from the XKSS chas­sis log. All cars are sold at a price in ex­cess of £ 1 mil­lion ( over R17 mil­lion) each. — WR.


The top view of the first gen­uine Jaguar XKSS to be built in almost 60 years, now on dis­play at the Petersen Mu­seum in Los An­ge­les.

The fist of nine cars for de­liv­ery to cus­tomers across the globe in 2017.

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