62 years have passed since the production of the last Jaguar D-type, a notorious and successful British sports racing car, but Jaguar has recently announced continuation of the production of their classic race car. The triumphant and exclusive D-Type, which won the 1956 Le Mans race is one of the most expensive British cars in history, being sold for £16.6m in 2016. The new-generation multi-million-pound recreations of the D-type will perfectly replicate the original model exist as rare and exclusive models.
How many Jaguar D-Types were made?The first-generation sports race car by Jaguar underwent production between 1954 - 1957, however only 75 out of 100 planned models were built, leaving 25 chassis numbers unused. 'Mr. Jaguar' Sir Williams Lyons had the ultimate vision to convert the remaining 25 D-type racers into road-car versions back in 1957, and Jaguar Classic is now honouring his ambition by creating the remaining sports cars. Despite wanting the remaning 25 models to be resurrected as road-cars, the new generation D-types will be for use on private roads and racetracks only, as they will be not be road registerable.
The first example has already been built and was unveiled at the Salon RetroMobile show in Paris on 7 February 2018. The engineering prototype was built to the 1956 Longnose specification - clients will have the choice of either 1955 Shortnose or 1956 Longnose specification bodywork, dependant on preference. The outstanding 24 D-types are set to be hand-built at Jaguar Land Rover Classic Works in Warwickshire, UK in due course, with every aspect of each D-type being created to authentic, original specification.
Tim Hannig, Jaguar Land Rover Classic Director said:
"The Jaguar D-type is one of the most iconic and beautiful competition cars of all time, with an outstanding record in the world's toughest motor races. And it's just as spectacular today. The opportunity to continue the D-type's success story, by completing its planned production run in Coventry, is one of those once-in-a-lifetime projects that our world-class experts at Jaguar Land Rover Classic are proud to fulfil."
Performances that made history: Jaguar D-type at Le MansThe design of the D-type, which was revolutionary at the time the sports car was first produced, was based around aeronautical technology resulting in a monocoque chassis, establishing easily identifiable and unique styling. Powered by the six-cylinder XK engine, the D-type was a truly innovative model with regards to its design and performance, leading various Jaguar D-types to triumph in the Le Mans 24-hour race - the world's most historic and prestige sports car race. The D-type's top speed is an impressive 172.8mph and was achieved on the Mulsanne Straight of Circuit des 24 Heures.
As a result of three consecutive Le Mans victories between 1955 and 1957, Jaguar Classic would like to honour the success of the historic sports car by reviving the remaining 25 D-types that were always planned to be produced.
The production of the new D-types is the third continuation vehicle from Jaguar Classic and will follow the same concept of the rebuild of the Jaguar Lightweight E-type, which saw the prestige automotive brand resurrect the 'missing six' lightweight E-types from 1963. Only 12 of out 18 were originally completed and the remaining six were hand-built by skilled jaguar craftsmen back in 2014.
As well as the continuation of the E-type, Jaguar also executed the rebuild of nine XKSS - arguably one of the most desirable road cars ever made - in 2017-18, all worth £1 million each. With only 25 XKSSs being built upon original launch and production, it remains one of the rarest and sought-after cars in history. The production of the new XKSSs will replace the nine models that were regrettably destroyed in 1957 as a result of a fire breaking out at Browns Lane Plant, the site of Jaguar production until 1998.
Stratstone Lightweight E-typeStratstone are fortunate enough to have acquired one of the 'missing six' lightweight E-types, which were hand built with original 1960s production methods and mechanism in 2014.
Since being in possession of the rare and exclusive Lightweight E-type - also known as No. 15 - Stratstone has flaunted it at numerous different events, allowing attendees and motoring fanatics alike to see the prestige and sought after race car first hand. The Lightweight E-type made its debut at Le Mans in 2016, has been showcased alongside the Concorde at Car Cafe XL, competed around Thruxton Race Circuit against five other special vehicles to support a segment for Vanity Fair, in addition to making an appearance at many other exciting events.
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