After 6725 hours of painstaking restoration, the unique 1954 XK120 will make its UK debut later this week
The one-off Pininfarina-bodied Jaguar XK120 that made its first post-restoration appearance at last year’s Pebble Beach will be shown in the UK for the first time this week.
Specialist Classic Motor Cars took 6725 hours to complete the restoration, and in August the car won an award at the Californian concours d’elegance.
At the London Classic Car Show at ExCel, which takes place on February 15-18, the 1954 SE will make its first UK public outing on the CMC stand.
Nigel Woodward, managing director at CMC, said: ‘We are excited to be bringing this rare Jaguar to the capital. The car is no stranger to being the centre of attention. It turned heads when it was unveiled at the 1955 Geneva Motor Show, as well as at its second unveiling at Pebble Beach, and we are confident it will do the same at the London Classic Car Show.
‘The car’s life is a bit of a mystery, as there is not much information about its whereabouts after it was last seen in 1955. CMC purchased it in 2015 from a German gentleman, who had bought it in the USA in 1978 with the intention of restoring it, but never got round to it. We took on the challenge of restoring it, and an epic 6725-hour journey then began.
‘This was one of the most challenging restorations ever undertaken by CMC. We managed to restore every aspect of it, from the unique body and structure through to paint, trim and mechanical elements, whilst saving as much of the original car as possible.’
Chassis S675360 was first delivered to Automotive Hall of Fame inductee Max Hoffman, an Austrian-born, New York-based importer of luxury European automobiles.
During the pre-restoration forensic inspection, it was found that Pininfarina had used the original XK body as the basis, and that a previous owner had painted the exterior in burgundy and covered the seats with tan leather.
Some of the original parts were impossible to find, such as bumpers and chrome work, so CMC remade them by hand from photographs. The technicians also had to scan the front and rear end of the car in order to make mock-ups of the lights.
CMC’s stand will also feature a mid-restoration 1958 Aston Martin DB MkIII – a work-in-progress that spent 35 years of its life in storage.