1956 Jaguar XK140 Drophead Coupe - £139,995

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This is a 1956 Jaguar XK140 Drophead Coupe UK RHD offered in remarkable original condition.

Launched at the 1954 London Motor Show as the successor to the sensational XK120 which had appeared in 1948, the XK140 was broadly similar to the outgoing model but considerably more refined with a host of mechanical improvements.

Under the bonnet the XK140 retained Jaguar's well-proven 3.4-litre twin-cam six, which now produced 190bhp in standard trim thanks to higher-lift camshafts and revised porting – up 30bhp from the standard XK120 and easily capable of speeds in excess of 120mph. A close-ratio gearbox enabled better use to be made of the increased performance, as did stiffer torsion bars on the front suspension and new telescopic shock absorbers to the rear. Steering was also improved with the adoption of the rack-and-pinion set up from the Le Mans-winning C-Type racer.

The superbly trimmed cabin was also notably roomier as the engine and bulkhead were now three inches further forward, a modification which also improved weight distribution and handling. External changes were limited to a wider radiator grille, rear lights incorporating flashing indicators, and larger bumpers front and rear. Three body styles were offered, fixed-head, roadster and drop-head, the latter being the rarest (and the most attractive) of all. A total of 8,951 XK140s were made before it was replaced by the larger XK150 in 1957, of which just 2,789 were drop-heads and only 479 were right-hand drive – just 249 of which are known to survive    

This particular car is one of those few survivors, a genuine right-hand drive drop-head coupe that was supplied new by Attwood's of Wolverhampton in January 1956. Although the V5C records just two owners from new (father and daughter), we have established that the car had one previous local keeper before it was acquired by Arthur Fieldhouse of Park Drive, Wolverhampton, in 1958. He kept the car right up until his death in 1997, at which point ownership was transferred to his daughter who lived just a few doors away. Residing in the same garage for 50 years, the car has covered less than 30,500 miles from new, a total which is warranted by the previous owner and is clearly borne out by it's fine condition.

The car is said to be totally original and unrestored throughout, right down to the carpets, the hood and the tool-kit in the boot. The rear springs are still encased in their original leather gaiters with the original grease nipples intact. Apart from a few very small areas which have been touched up in the distant past, the paintwork also appears to be wholly original and close inspection of the chassis shows no signs of any previous welding or other repair work, not even to the sills. The doors still open and shut beautifully with perfect panel gaps, a tribute to the great skill with which these cars were made in the first place – and seldom equalled on restored cars.  

The car has been stored on blocks since at least 1997 with all the brightwork, both inside and out, carefully preserved with grease and still in excellent condition today. The woodwork and leather trim is similarly original and outstanding with the kind of patina that only comes from decades of light use and loving care. Every gauge, switch and light on the car still works exactly as it should.

Although the hood on this car may need replacing and the carpets are somewhat thin here and there, it remains the finest, most original example we have ever seen. The XK Register has confirmed that all the numbers match on this car and are as it left the factory. This car formed an integral part of the JD classics XK collection for many years.

This is a very rare opportunity to buy possibly the most original XK140 in the world today.