Skip to main content

Jaguar will build a classic XKSS for nine very lucky, very rich collectors

Jaguar Classic has revealed its own work of art within the stunning Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. After looking forward, with the debut of its all-electric i-Pace Concept, the U.K. automaker has drawn upon its rich racing history to produce something truly remarkable.

In 1957, Jaguar honored the Le Mans-winning D-type with a road-going version, dubbed the XKSS. Of the 25 total vehicles produced, nine examples designated for North America were lost in a fire at Jaguar’s factory. At the time, Jaguar didn’t replace the cars, but now, nearly 60 years later, Jaguar Classic is settling up its debt.

Nine XKSS sports cars will be produced for a select group of collectors and customers. Each vehicle will use a period-correct chassis and sell for more than 1 million British pounds ($1,241,900 U.S. dollars).

“The XKSS is one of the most important cars in Jaguar’s history, and we are committed to making the ‘new original’ version absolutely faithful to the period car in every way,” said Kev Riches, Jaguar Classic engineering manager.

The body of the XKSS is made from magnesium alloy, as it was in 1957, and Jaguar Classic built a new styling buck to construct each car using the original hand-wheeling process.

To match these cars as closely as possible to the originals, Jaguar Classic combined original drawings and digital imaging techniques. Engineers started with original frames and commissioned Reynolds, a tube frame manufacturer, to produce bespoke parts using imperial measurements. Each frame is bronze welded, just like the ’50s chassis tubing.

Under each hood sits a 3.4-liter straight six-cylinder Jaguar D-type engine making 262 horsepower. The engine is constructed from new cast iron block cylinder heads, and three Weber DC03 carburetors. Period-specific four-wheel Dunlop disc brakes and Dunlop tires on riveted two-piece magnesium alloy wheels are also part of the package.

Inside, the XKSS features re-creations of original Smiths gauges and gorgeous wood. To improve safety, Jaguar Classic used more robust materials on the fuel cell. Jaguar Classics expects each XKSS will require 10,000 man hours of labor to produce.

“Everything is the same as the original cars, because that is the way it should be,” said Riches.

The XKSS is Jaguar Classic’s second continuation car, following the six Lightweight E-types that debuted in 2014. Jaguar Land Rover Classics will move into a new global headquarters costing 7.5 million British pounds in Coventry, England, in 2017, and plans to expand its operations.

“The XKSS continuation program underlines the world-class expertise we have at Jaguar Land Rover Classic,” stated Tim Hannig, director of Jaguar Land Rover Classic. “We are committed to nurturing the passion and enthusiasm for Jaguar’s illustrious past by offering exceptional cars, services, parts, and experiences.”

Editors' Recommendations

Miles Branman
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Miles Branman doesn't need sustenance; he needs cars. While the gearhead gene wasn't strong in his own family, Miles…
The 949HP LaFerrari returns to Paris, sans top, with the new Aperta
Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta

Ferrari certainly took its time rolling out a convertible version of its LaFerrari hybrid supercar. The the LaFerrari hardtop debuted in 2013 and quickly disappeared after a production run of just 499 cars. But the convertible LaFerrari wasn't publicly announced until this past July (customers likely got an earlier heads-up), and the car itself is just now making its debut at the 2016 Paris Motor Show.

Known as the LaFerrari Aperta, the topless version is virtually identical to the LaFerrari coupe, with some tweaks to accommodate the removable roof. That roof, by the way, is a soft top, although a carbon fiber hard top is optional. To account for the loss in structural rigidity from removing the roof, engineers reinforced the chassis. They also made adjustments to the cooling system, because airflow changes with the roof off.

Read more
Volkswagen’s ambitious I.D. concept should make Tesla very, very worried
volkswagen id concept pictures specs electric cars tesla

When Volkswagen’s Dieselgate emissions scandal hit, the public reacted with surprise, anger, and disappointment. The automaker responded the only way it could — it apologized and promised to change. Moving forward, the brand would focus on “green” products and e-mobility, with 30 all-electric models being launched in the next decade.

Read more: VW takes the Sportwagen past where the pavement ends

Read more
Bentley’s Flying Spur W12 S is for the super rich who want to go super fast
Bentley Flying Spur W12 S

Bentley has announced a faster, more powerful evolution of the Flying Spur in time for the Paris Auto Show.

The new model is known as the Flying Spur W12 S. The S signifies that it uses an evolution of the Flying Spur's twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 engine tuned to pump out 626 horsepower and a 605 pound-feet of torque starting at just 2,000 rpm. That's enough to send Bentley's big sedan from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.2 seconds, and on to a top speed of 202 mph. Notably, it's the first four-door Bentley to break the 200-mph mark.

Read more