Lot 172 - 1955 Jaguar XK140 Drophead Coupé
|Estimate||£35,000 - £45,000|
The XK140 was introduced in late 1954 and sold as a 1955 model. Exterior changes that distinguished it from the XK120 included more substantial front and rear bumpers with overriders and flashing turn signals (operated by a switch on the dash) above the front bumper. The grille remained the same size but became a one-piece cast unit with fewer and broader, vertical bars. The Jaguar badge was incorporated into the grille surround. A chrome trim strip ran along the centre of the bonnet and boot lid. An emblem on the boot lid contained the words "Winner Le Mans 1951–3".
The interior was made more comfortable for taller drivers by moving the engine, firewall and dash forward to give three inches more legroom. Two 6-volt batteries, one in each front wing were fitted to the Fixedhead Coupé, but Dropheads and the Open Two Seater had a single 12-volt battery installed in the front wing on the passenger side. The XK140 was powered by the Jaguar XK engine with the special equipment modifications from the XK120, which raised the specified power by 10 bhp to 190 bhp at 5500 rpm, as standard. The C-Type cylinder head, carried over from the XK120 catalogue, and producing 210 bhp at 5750 rpm, was optional equipment. The Drophead Coupé had a lined canvas top that lowered onto the body behind the seats, a fixed windscreen integral with the body (the Roadster's screen was removable), wind-up side windows, and a small rear seat. It also had a walnut-veneered dashboard and door cappings.
Out of a total of 8,937 XK140's built only 480 were righthand drive Drophead Coupés, with this particular example being a genuine UK delivered car, built on 20th May 1955 and despatched on 7th June via Henlys of London through dealer Brooklands of Bond Street and first registered on 14th July to J. Doltis Limited of London. The accompanying Heritage Certificate confirms the car retains its all important original engine and the body number matches that of the chassis plate. The Heritage Certificate also informs us it left the factory in British Racing Green, however, according to the green log book that is contained in the cars file, the colour was changed to blue in 1968 which it wears today. The hood frame is present along with the walnut veneer dash and biscuit interior. Retaining its original registration mark of RLT 777, the car was purchased by the vendor in November 2008 from an esteemed XK specialist as a barn find and had already been off the road for some time with the view to restore the car. To find a rare car like this, in this condition, is a remarkable find and offers the new owner an original, UK delivered, matching numbers and largely complete car with which to make a wonderful project.
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.