The Jaguar XKSS is the latest car from Jaguar to be reborn, with nine ‘new’ XKSS being built and with a price tag of over £1 million. The first car is now complete.
The Jaguar XKSS is perhaps the most desirable, and rarest, of classic Jaguars, with just 16 cars ever hitting the road after Jaguar’s track exploits with the D-Type ended and Jaguar decided to turn the track chassis in to road cars
But now there are going to be 25 XKSS, and the first of the new XKSS has been revealed in Los Angeles.
As we reported back in March, Jaguar has decided to do with the XKSS what it did a couple of years ago with the Lightweight E-Type, and create exact copies of the iconic car for deep-pocketed Jaguar lovers who can’t stretch to – or get their hands on – an original.
With the XKSS, Jaguar justify making new cars because of the history, where 25 D-Type chassis were planned to become XKSS models, but only 16 were built before a fire at Browns Lane in 1957 destroyed the remaining nine. Jaguar feel they are simply putting history right.
Whilst having reservations about the whole ‘continuation’ model idea, we can’t help but be beguiled by a new XKSS, hand-built by Jaguar Classic using the period ‘lost’ chassis numbers.
The care that appears to have been taken over 10,000 hours to recreate each car is remarkable, with Jaguar scanning original XKSS models to build a digital databank of the car, bodywork made from original spec magnesium alloy and the building of new styling bucks for the craftsmen at Jaguar to hand-wheel the panels.
Under the bonnet sits a 3.4 litre straight six with 258bhp with a trio of Webbers and a four-speed gearbox – just as it should be – and even the instruments are faithful reproductions of the Smith original.
Kev Riches, Jaguar Classic Engineering Manager, said:
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.
From the number, type and position of all the rivets used – there are more than 2,000 in total – to the Smiths gauges on the dashboard, everything is the same as the original cars, because that is the way it should be.
This XKSS revealed in LA isn’t for sale and isn’t a customer car, but is the blueprint for the nine customer cars which will follow, with first deliveries in 2017 to nine very lucky owners.
And just in case you’ve been fired-up to raid your piggy-bank for a continuation XKSS, don’t bother – all the new XKSS cars were sold by June.