D-Type Continuation

1955 Jaguar D-Type Continuation

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Elkhart, Indiana | October 23-24, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

This time last week we were talking about Jaguar’s XKSS continuation series of cars. This week, it’s time to talk D-Types. This is, perhaps, the most legendary Jag. The D-Type won Le Mans three straight years: 1955, 1956, and 1957. The company managed to get 71 built, though they planned on building 100.

Which leads us to this. A couple of years ago Jaguar announced that they would finish off the 25 cars to get them to the 100 they initially wanted (though the 25 they didn’t build were intended to be XKSS examples, and nine of those never got built due to a fire… the math works, trust me).

These continuation cars were built by Jaguar using the same processes they used in 1955. Power is from a 3.4-liter inline-six. You could get them in short or long-nose form, and this is an example of the former. It’s covered less than 200 miles with its first owner.

The D-Type we featured in 2013 failed to sell with a high bid of $6.2 million. This one, supposedly built the same way, should bring significantly less. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

XKSS Continuation

1957 Jaguar XKSS Continuation

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Elkhart, Indiana | October 23-24, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The XKSS was the road-going version of the Jaguar D-Type racing car. Basically, Jaguar had unsold D-Types that they converted to sell to Americans who wanted a high-performance sports car. They planned to build 25 of them, but a fire broke out at the factory in February 1957 after only 16 were sold.

So in 2016, Jaguar decided they would build the other nine that never got completed back in the day. From scratch. They digitally scanned a few surviving XKSS cars and built the new ones using the same construction methods from the 1950s. Major changes include a modern fuel cell and redesigned seats. Power is from a 3.4-liter inline-six that Jaguar rated at 250 horsepower in 1957.

So what do we have here exactly? Well, it depends on how much of an asshole you want to be (pardon my French). Whoever edited the Wikipedia article for these referred to them as “replicas” (presumably the page was edited by an actual XKSS owner or some Jag purist). At the same time, this is a factory-built XKSS. It wasn’t built by Tempero or some other actual “replica” builder. True, it might not be an “actual” XKSS from 1957, but it’s still a Jaguar product. It’s almost certainly more authentic than any “continuation” Cobra out there.

When Jaguar announced this program, they noted that they were going to charge over $1 million for them. And they sold. But this is the first time one of the “new” ones has come up for sale. An XKSS from the ’50s will run you over $10 million. This one, which was built in 2017 and has 51 miles on it, will sell without reserve. So we’re all about to find out its real value. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.