Cars Jaguar Jaguar D-type

1954 - 1957 Jaguar D-Type

1954 - 1957 Jaguar D-Type
- image 653782
  • Jaguar D-Type
  • Year:
    1954- 1957
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Transmission:
    4-manual
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    250@6000
  • Torque @ RPM:
    4000
  • Displacement:
    3442 L
  • 0-60 time:
    4.7 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    167.8 mph
  • 0-100 time:
    13.5 sec.
  • car segment:
  • body style:

When the 24 Hours of Le Mans started up again after WWII, it took a few years for any one company to clearly dominate the race. The first several races were each wins for different marques, but Jaguar became the first one to win two postwar races in 1953, with the excellent C-Type racer. But, as good as the C-Type was, it was up against the technological marvel that was the Mercedes-Benz 300SL, as well as the Ferrari 375 Plus — a car that was almost more of a giant V-12 engine than it was car. So, even as the C-Type was taking an overall win in 1953, Jaguar was already working on a new version of the car.

The story of the D-Type starts with the XK120, Jaguar’s first postwar sports car. At the time, it was the fastest production car in the world, and so when Jaguar wanted to compete at Le Mans, it just made a competition version of the car (this being the C-Type). But, with the XK120 having debuted in 1948, most of the technology that went into it was prewar and by the mid ’50s there was a lot of new thinking and technology that could be applied — most importantly, a lot of airplane technology.

Continue reading for the full story.

54 photos

Latest Jaguar D-type news and reviews:

A Classic Jaguar is Being Brought Back To Life

A Classic Jaguar is Being Brought Back To Life

Jag confirms build of 25 models

While it’s not exactly as famous as the Jaguar E-Type — no Jag is — the D-Type is still regarded as one of the most iconic Jaguars in history. Only 75 D-Type units were built in the late 1950s after Jaguar initially planned to build 100 units. Apparently, Jag’s failure to reach its intended goal has gnawed at the company for years. Well, Jag’s finally doing something to address that by announcing plans to build the last 25 units of the D-Type. This is not a drill, folks. Jaguar really is going to build the last 25 units of the iconic race car, completing what it should’ve done 60 years ago.

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1958 Lister-Jaguar ‘Knobbly'

1958 Lister-Jaguar ‘Knobbly’

A British classic with unreal performance potential

Throughout the 1950’s, Jaguar was busy establishing itself as a major power when it came to racing at Le Mans and sports car racing in general, owing much to such icons as the C-Type and its successor, the D-Type. By 1957, the Cat Badge had acquired as many as four wins at the iconic 24-hour race, not to mention numerous additional wins around the world. Unfortunately, Jag was stopped dead in its tracks when its Browns Lane factory in Coventry burned down in a fire on February 12th of that year, subsequently destroying the brand’s competition vehicles and the means to produce them, not to mention nine D-Types slated for road duty in XKSS specification. However, rather than throwing in the towel, Jaguar responded by turning to its motorsports partner Lister Motor Company, and a deal was struck wherein Lister would supply a body and chassis, while Jaguar would outfit it with an engine and drivetrain components. Thus, the iconic Lister-Jaguar ‘Knobbly’ was born, and with it, further competition success for the British automaker. Equipped with a lightweight aluminum body, advanced suspension and brakes, and a powerful six-cylinder engine, these curvaceous racers had the right stuff to once again propel its drivers to the top of podium.

These days, the Lister-Jaguar ‘Knobbly’ is considered highly collectible, with some examples easily fetching several million dollars at auction. We managed to catch one at the Mecum Auction in Monterey, California, this past August, and present it here for your lust and admiration.

Continue reading to learn more about Lister-Jaguar ‘Knobbly’.

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Le Mans-Winning Jaguar D-Type To Be Auctioned In Monterey

Le Mans-Winning Jaguar D-Type To Be Auctioned In Monterey

The iconic Ecurie Ecosse D-Type is looking for a new owner

Introduced in 1954 and specifically for racing, the Jaguar D-Type went on to become one of the most iconic race cars ever built, scoring no fewer than 164 outright wins in 11 years, including three consecutive victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Naturally, the cars that triumphed at Le Mans are the most sought-after nowadays, and collectors will have the chance to bid on one such model at RM Sotheby’s auction event in Monterey on August 19-20.

The car in question is the Ecurie Ecosse-liveried D-Type that won the famous race in 1956. Driven by Ninian Sanderson and Ron Flockhart, the blue Jaguar won the event one lap ahead of Stirling Moss’ Aston Martin DB3S. The D-Type also defeated a Ferrari 625LM and a Porsche 55A/4 RS in the process.

Raced between 1955 and 1960, and then again in 1970, chassis no. XKD 501 scored a total of six overall wins. Four came in its first year on the track, the fifth was at Le Mans, and the sixth was at the only event it was entered in for 1970, 15 years after its inception. The car scored another 11 podium finishes throughout its career, making it one of the most successful D-Types. The car was raced at Goodwood, Mille Miglia, Silverstone, and Brands Hatch, among other race tracks in Europe. All but one of its 29 events were raced under the colors of Ecurie Ecosse, known for its signature metallic blue livery with the St. Andrews Cross on the front fenders.

Now offered from its third private owner, the XKD 501 comes with extensive documentation and has been restored to its original Le Mans specification. It has the same 3.4-liter six-cylinder engine (250 horsepower) with three Weber carburetors that is mated to a four-speed manual transmission. The independent front suspension, live rear axle, and four-wheel disc brakes are as authentic as they get, being sourced from Jaguar during the restoration.

Its impressive racing heritage and excellent condition means it won’t change owners for cheap, though. Much like other Le Mans winners, it will fetch big bucks when it crosses the auction block. There’s no official estimate, but it’s safe to assume we’re talking about a few million dollars.

Continue reading for the full story.

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2016 Lister Jaguar Stirling Moss Edition Prototype

2016 Lister Jaguar Stirling Moss Edition Prototype

It’s nearly identical to the car Moss drove at Silverstone in 1958

Racing was very competitive back in the 1950s and had far fewer regulations as to the limitation of car modification. As such, Brian Lister needed to stay ahead of customer cars on the track, so he created the “Works” Knobbly racing cars that featured a truly lightweight body made out of magnesium – a material that is lightweight, but expensive to source and extremely hard to shape and manipulate. In 1954 Brain Lister met Sir Stirling Moss and the two immediately became friends, with Moss racing for Lister on three separate occasions in one of these “works” Knobbly cars. Moss took pole at Silverstone on July 19th of 1958 and secured a win in a magnesium-bodied Lister that wore the number plate “MVE 303.” Because of this win, Lister is now offering up a limited-run continuation of the “Works” Knobbly.

This continuation of the model comes after a continuation of the Knobbly with an aluminum body, but will only be limited to 10 examples, all of which will be heavily targeted by historic racing fans. The most important part about the Lister Knobbly Jaguar Stirling Moss continuation model is the fact that it too has a hand-formed magnesium body, which also adds even more value to this continuation model, as no magnesium-bodied Listers from the 1950s have survived thus far.

Lawrence Whittaker, the CEO of Lister Motor Company, said, “The launch of these Stirling Moss editions represents a truly unique opportunity. None of the original magnesium-bodied ‘works’ Lister Knobblys survived from the 1950s, so the fortunate few who get to own a Stirling Moss edition will be getting a period-correct continuation ‘works’ Lister made using the same techniques as the original. Secondly, as magnesium is such a difficult-to-source material and requires incredible skill and craftsmanship to form, the Lister Jaguar Knobbly Stirling Moss edition will be the only magnesium-bodied car you can buy – either as a road or racing car – anywhere in the world.”

Adding even more fluff to this continuation model is the fact that this is only the second time that Stirling Moss has put his name on a car, and it is expected to be an instant classic. With that said, customer deliveries are expected to Fall of 2017, so let’s take a closer look at the Lister Jaguar Stirling Moss Edition before all examples are snatched up.

Continue reading to learn more about the Lister Jaguar Stirling Moss Edition Prototype.

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Jaguar To Restart Production Of Classic XKSS

Jaguar To Restart Production Of Classic XKSS

Only nine models will be built, each priced at $1.5 million

Following the success of the of the Jaguar E-Type lightweights back in 2014, Jaguar Land Rover’s Special Vehicles Operations, the same performance division that also gave us beauties like the Jaguar F-Type Project 7 and the Range Rover Sport SVR, has now set its sights on another iconic Jaguar: the XKSS.

For those who are too young to remember, the Jaguar XKSS was the road-going version of the D-Type race car. The British automaker really had no plans to build the model and the decision to do so only came about as a last-ditch attempt to recoup the investments made to the D-Type after the automaker withdrew the car from racing competitions. That decision eventually led Jaguar, under the directive of co-founder Sir William Lyons, to convert the remaining unsold D-Types sitting in the company’s Browns Lane factory into road-going cars. In truth, "conversion" might seem like an overstatement because Jaguar really didn’t do much in the process. It merely added a passenger side door and removed the divider between the two front seats. It also removed the large fin behind the river’s seats. Side screens were also added on both sides of the car and a standard-issue, foldable fabric roof was thrown in for good measure. Despite the changes, the XKSS was essentially the D-Type in road-going clothing. Jaguar ended up building 25 units of the XKSS, but was only able to sell 16 of those models. The other nine were all destroyed in a fire at the Browns Lane plant back in 1957, never to be seen again.

That story leads us to today, where the story of the burned down XKSS models comes full circle. Jaguar’s announcement that the nine XKSS models that were burned down 59 years ago will be rebuilt for a select group of customers and collectors. Each of the nine XKSS units that will be rebuilt is expected to cost at least $1.5 million with deliveries scheduled to begin in early 2017.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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Saint Patrick's Day Special: 7 Famous Green Cars

Saint Patrick’s Day Special: 7 Famous Green Cars

It’s St. Patrick’s Day and the traditional "wearing of the green" has already begun among Irish communities around the world. Held on the traditional death date of Saint Patrick, the foremost patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick’s Day has been celebrated by the Irish in Europe since the tenth century. In the U.S., where it is not a legal holiday, it has been celebrated since the late 18th century with prominent displays of the color green, big parades, and considerable consumption of alcohol.

While we wouldn’t say no to a pint of Ireland’s finest beer, we thought we should stick to celebrating the "wearing of the green" by showcasing some of the most famous green-painted cars in history. Talking about cars is what we do best and we think it’s the greatest way possible to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day as well. Keep reading to have a look at my green picks and let me know if there’s a car you would have included on this list in the comments section.

Have a great St. Pat’s Day and remember that drinking and driving don’t go well together. Have a pint or two, but stay safe!

Continue reading for the full story.

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1954 - 1957 Jaguar D-Type

1954 - 1957 Jaguar D-Type

When the 24 Hours of Le Mans started up again after WWII, it took a few years for any one company to clearly dominate the race. The first several races were each wins for different marques, but Jaguar became the first one to win two postwar races in 1953, with the excellent C-Type racer. But, as good as the C-Type was, it was up against the technological marvel that was the Mercedes-Benz 300SL, as well as the Ferrari 375 Plus — a car that was almost more of a giant V-12 engine than it was car. So, even as the C-Type was taking an overall win in 1953, Jaguar was already working on a new version of the car.

The story of the D-Type starts with the XK120, Jaguar’s first postwar sports car. At the time, it was the fastest production car in the world, and so when Jaguar wanted to compete at Le Mans, it just made a competition version of the car (this being the C-Type). But, with the XK120 having debuted in 1948, most of the technology that went into it was prewar and by the mid ’50s there was a lot of new thinking and technology that could be applied — most importantly, a lot of airplane technology.

Continue reading for the full story.

Read more
1955 Jaguar D-Type Auctioned

1955 Jaguar D-Type Auctioned

Revered by Steve McQueen, who drove the road-going XKSS version, and three-time overall winner of the Le Mans 24 hours race, the D-Type is one of the most famous Jaguars ever. Since with fame usually comes fortune, the few remaining D-Types out there command outrageous prices at auctions, and the following example is likely to provide more proof of that when it goes on sale on March 14, 2015. In fact, the car is expected to fetch around $4 million, which would put it right up there with some of the most expensive Ferraris from the era.

One of only 54 cars produced for privateer customers, this XCD 530 chassis has been used mainly for ice racing, believe it or not, as the car was originally sold to a Finnish professional tennis player who was also known for his racing exploits in F3 midget cars and a Jaguar C-Type. Curt Lincoln, the original owner, apparently wanted to circumvent a large import tax on his D-Type and instructed Jaguar to make the model appear used.

Updated 03/16/2015: As expected this 1955 Jaguar D-Type turned out to be a real success: this Saturday it was auctioned at Amelia Island for $3,675,000.

Click past the jump to read more about this 1955 Jaguar D-Type.

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Jaguar's SVO Division Plans To Revive XK SS

Jaguar’s SVO Division Plans To Revive XK SS

The XK SS is a bit of an enigma in Jaguar history. Based on the Jaguar D-Type race car that won Le Mans in 1955 and 1956, it’s not only one of the rarest Jaguars ever built, but also one of the most beautiful. A planned production run of 25 was cut short when a fire broke out in Jaguar’s factory in Coventry, England, destroying nine. Most of the remaining 16 made their way to the U.S. Steve McQueen ended up with one and nicknamed it “The Green Rat.” He and “The Rat” were such a terror on the streets of Los Angeles that the LAPD Sherriff put up a steak dinner bounty for the officer who brought him in.

Not every XK SS has such an interesting story, but according to Netherlands-based Autovisie, Jaguar might be looking to create a few new ones. John Edwards, the Chief Executive of Jaguar Department of Special Vehicle Operations, says his department’s next project could be building the final nine XK SSs that were consumed in the factory fire. He and others within Jaguar SVO are looking at three or four ideas, but the XK SS is definitely a front-runner.

Last year Jaguar SVO announced it would be building six “new” Lightweight E-Types using original specifications and construction methods from 1963. All six have already been spoken for. Like the XK SS, Lightweight E-Type production was also cut short, but for different reasons. Edwards says good stories like this are a requirement for SVO cars. Delivering the final nine XK SSs almost 60 years late would definitely make for a compelling story.

Click past the jump to read more about the Jaguar XK SS.

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Video: Evolution Of Jaguar - From C-Type To F-Type

Video: Evolution Of Jaguar - From C-Type To F-Type

Although it has been missing from top-level motorsport for more than two decades now, Jaguar remains one of the world’s most successful race car manufacturers. Between the early 1950s and the early 1990s, the Brits brought home no less than seven 24 Hours of Le Mans trophies, just enough to place them right below Ferrari and above makers such as Bentley, Alfa Romeo, and Ford. Jaguar’s Le Mans success returned under the spotlight with the F-Type Project 7, a limited-edition sports car built to commemorate the company’s success in France.

And the folks over at XCAR thought it would be a great idea to look back on the F-Type’s spiritual predecessor, the E-Type, and the other two spectacular racers that preceded it, the C-Type and D-Type. Not only that, but the Brits also managed to round up all three vehicles on the same track for a 19-minute history lesson that covers nearly 24 years of good old Jaguar days.

It all begins with the C-Type, a track-exclusive car built to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It did so by dominating the 1953 race against heavy competition from Cunningham and Ferrari. XCAR also has a thorough look at the D-Type, yet another Jag confined to the race course. Built between 1954 and 1957, the D-Type was even more successful than the C-Type. It won the famed Le Mans event three times in a row between 1955 and 1957 and among its victims were various Ferraris, Aston Martins, and Porsches.

Finally, the video focuses on the E-Type, know as one of the most beautiful sports cars of the 20th century. When it debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in 1961, the E-Type had a 3.8-liter engine that delivered 265 horsepower and staggering performance for the era — naught to 62 mph in six seconds and a top speed of 150 mph. By 1970 displacement had increased to 4.2 liters, but the six-banger was dropped in 1971, when Jaguar offered a 5.3-liter, V-12 mill rated at up to 295 ponies and 300 pound-feet of torque.

Of course, there’s more to the E-Type than raw power and torque, but we’ll let you discover more by watching XCAR’s video. Hit the play button above for the greatest Jaguar trio to ever hit the street and track.

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Jaguar F-Type Project 7 Made Its Dynamic Debut; D-Type Won 2014 Le Mans Classic

Jaguar F-Type Project 7 Made Its Dynamic Debut; D-Type Won 2014 Le Mans Classic

The Jaguar F-Type reinvented the way we looked at Jaguar. For the first time in years, it had its claws out and the F-Type was one ferocious feline that caused rival companies to tremble in fear. So if that was the F-Type, how do we describe the F-Type Project 7? A big cat on steroids? Whatever the case may be, the F-Type Project 7 finally made its debut at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and boy oh boy, did it make an impression!

The F-Type Project is the fastest and most powerful production car Jaguar has ever built. Those aren’t hollow words, either, because the company has a long and exquisite history that includes some of the most iconic sports cars ever built. But none of those models could’ve held a candle to the F-Type Project 7.

So it was pretty special seeing the F-Type Project 7 at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. But what made it more memorable was seeing the fastest Jag ever partake in a parade alongside the Jaguar D-Type, the very car that inspired the F-Type. It was a nostalgic look at Jag’s past and present, culminating in the D-Type scoring an incredible victory at the 2014 Le Mans Classic.

The day couldn’t have gone better for Jaguar. It successfully showcased its new pride and joy while also reliving history with another Le Mans win for the D-Type.

Those claws really do look quite menacing, don’t they?

Click past the jump to read more about the Jaguar F-Type Project 7.

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Video: Chris Harris Races the Goodwood Revival RAC TT 2013

Video: Chris Harris Races the Goodwood Revival RAC TT 2013

Chris Harris was at this year’s Goodwood Revival RAC TT 2013 where he seemed to have lots of fun. Harris and teammate, Anthony Reid, came to within a few laps of winning the Goodwood Revival, while driving the one-off Lister-Jaguar Coupe, but a rain-slicked track and a minor hiccup in the last few laps cost the race for the Jag.

Even though his team did not bring home first place, Harris described the experience as the best one ever. Check out the video to see why he found the RAC TT, the Lister-Jaguar and all of the other racecars so cool.

The Lister-Jaguar Coupe is powered by a Jaguar D-type in-line-six engine combined with an aerodynamic aluminum body that ensured the best driving dynamics. For a car launched in the 1950s, the Lister Jaguar Coupe delivered incredible performance figures for its era, including a 0-to-60 mph time of 11.2 seconds.

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Gooding & Company puts a Jaguar D Type race car up for auction

Gooding & Company puts a Jaguar D Type race car up for auction

As classic an automobile that the Jaguar E Type was in the 1960s and 70s, it never could have come about without the factory built D Type race cars of the 1950s. If you missed out on the opportunity to own and experience this classic vertical finned racer with its pronounced round fenders well this might just be what you have been waiting for. That is because the auction house Gooding & Company is putting a classic 1956 Jaguar D Type up for auction on January 23rd, 2010. Besides the English automotive icon, Gooding will also auction off a rare Pininfarina 1959 Ferrari 250 GT Series I Cabriolet, a beautifully appointed 1956 Maserati A6G/54 Berlinetta, Hollywood’s 1934 Hispano-Suiza J-12 T68 Cabriolet as well as a top performing 1932 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750.

The 1956 Jaguar D Type is powered by a 3.8 Liter straight six cylinder power plant that is capable of producing an estimated 300 HP, quite a feat for the 1950s. The quite large inline engine is mated to a four speed manual transmission because that is what they had back then. The car begun its racing career in 1956 competing in California and enjoyed continued success at tracks such as Santa Barbara, Bakersfield, Palm Springs, Riverside, Paramount Ranch and Pomona. Making the D Type even more of a collector’s item is that over the car’s entire production run, only 87 units were ever made, and after a bit of wheel banging action there are most certainly less than that left in the world.

Press release after the jump.

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