The highlight of our week was the Sir Stirling Moss XK120 being awarded a prize at the London Concours. Back at the workshop, we enjoyed mercifully cooler weather, but with this has come torrential downpours which do rather hinder test drives and customers colleting or dropping off cars. None the less, the workshop remains very busy with both XKs and other classics in for servicing, upgrades and restorations.
This beautiful, fully restored Jaguar XK120 OTS has largely been restored by the owner over the past 17 years. The car is almost finished and has come to us for a few finishing touches such as the wiring and all mechanical aspects of the car being checked over. We found that one of the cylinders had no compression and the fault lay with the cylinder head. The head has now been removed, rebuild and refitted. This XK was started for the first time last week and now runs beautifully. We cannot wait to be able to return the car to her owner.
This charming 2CV van belongs to our long-term customer Tony Hall. Many of you may have come across Tony's regular articles in the XK Club Magazine, XK Gazette, where he is currently chronicling the restoration of his Jaguar XK140 DHC. This will be the latest in a long line of classic Jaguars we have helped Tony to restore.
Tony is a true classic car enthusiast with his stable including Minis, a charming little trials car, a Vauxhall VX4/90 race car and this 2CV. The 2CV is in regular use on Tony's farm and he popped it down to us this week to have some brackets welding in for seatbelts to be fitted. We are able to offer a full range of welding and fabrication services to the classic car community across Hampshire and further afield.
Work progresses well on the Jaguar XK150 DHC 3.8 S full restoration. Almost all the original parts have been refitted to the bodyshell and any adaptations required have been made. Next week will see the hood frame, doors and windows set up before stripping the car back down for paint. This level of attention to detail is very time consuming however it is the only way to produce a truly first-class restoration.
We know this is an exceptionally special and rare car and we have been doing some research into the production figures to try to establish how many were built. Only sixty-nine right hand drive XK150 3.8 S drophead coupes were built but only a handful were for the UK market. Research continues on this subject, but it has been suggested that as few as nineteen cars were built for the UK.
Once again it is not only Jaguars which have been in the workshop this week. We cater for all sorts of classics. This charming pair of British classics, an MG C in the foreground and a Morgan Plus 8 in the background, are here for a throttle issue and a service and MOT respectively. We have also carried out a front suspension rebuild on the Morgan as it has excessive play in the trunnion bushes.
This XK150 came in with wipers only working on one speed, a very limited sweep and no auto park. After discussing his options, the owner chose to have our wiper upgrade system fitted consisting of a new motor, new wheel boxes, better wiper blades and a full custom-made linkage and motor mount.
Jaguar XKs are known for having poor wipers. The XK120 suffers being only single speed. The XK140 and XK150 suffer with thermal cut out issues causing the wipers to stop when you need them most! They are additionally handicapped with a limited sweep on the screen. Many issues with XK wiper systems are down to lack of maintenance. Wiper motor rebuilds are a time-consuming and specialist job which is rarely carried out even during restorations. If you are looking of a larger screen sweep and more powerful wipers, particularly on the XK120, then our wiper upgrade is the way to go. We offer both full rebuilds of original wiper systems and upgrades so whatever your needs, please get in touch.
Last week we returned the Stirling Moss XK120 FHC to its owner after many months of work. This week the car was invited to the London Concours to be displayed as part of 'The Pursuit of Speed' class. This class celebrated the innovative technologies of the crowned speed kings through the decades. It featured some truly stunning and special classic cars including a 1959 Mercedes 300 SL Gullwing and a 2018 McLaren Senna. Despite this truly stiff competition we are delighted to report that the XK120 won the class as well as receiving many admiring comments. It is a delight to see this special car recognised in such a way and to see the XK120 acknowledged as the cutting-edge supercar of its day. Jaguar truly moved motoring technology, along with the public's expectations, forward in the 1950s and with that laid the groundwork for what is now the Jaguar heritage.