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The XK140 replaced the XK120 in September 1954. After the immense popularity and success of its predecessor the XK140 had a lot to live up to. Although the XK140 never recreated the motor sport success of the XK120 because Jaguar were now running the C-type and developing the D-type, the 140 was a commercial success. Don’t be fooled by the XK140’s less sporty image though; the 140 took everything that was great about the 120 and built on it.
Although the XK140 retained the same clean, flowing lines of the XK120 there were many improvements to the car hidden underneath. The engine was more powerful from standard, steering was improved by a new rack and pinion system, tighter handling and a smoother rider were achieved by the old leaver arm dampers being replaced by telescopic shock absorbers and the engine was moved forward. Another advantage of the engine moving forward was that more room was created in the cockpit allowing the taller driver far more legroom than in a 120. The roofline of the XK140 was also lengthened to allow room for two tiny rear seats and the screen was moved forward. Full bumpers were fitted and lashings of chrome gave the 140 a more executive look without overwhelming the simple lines of the car.
The XK140 was again available in three body styles; the Open Two Seater (OTS), the Drop Head Coupé (DHC) and the Fixed Head Coupé (FHC). In addition to this there was a more comprehensive options list. The Special Equipment (SE) option remained with the added option of the ‘C-type’ head pushing the cars power output up to a claimed 210bhp. The 140 was also offered with an Overdrive and an Automatic gearbox giving the potential customer a full range of options to suit their needs. Exports still ruled the day in 1954 therefore much like the XK120 most XK140s were built in left hand drive and exported.
XK140 OTS 'SE'
XK140 DHC with roof down
XK140 Production Figures