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1956 Jaguar XKSS Roadster

The D-Type was unveiled in 1954 as a successor to the highly accomplished C-Type. Jaguar was eager to continue their success at Le Mans and in World Championship sports car racing, so engineers started with a virtual clean-sheet design to stay at the sharp end of the highly competitive field. The C-Type’s tubular space frame was ditched in favor of an ingenious semi-monocoque chassis design that featured a central body tub with bolt-on subframes. The proven XK inline six was punched out to 3.8 liters and fitted with a wide-angle cylinder head and triple Weber carburetors (with Lucas injection appearing later). Dunlop disc brakes, which had proven to be the C-Type’s trump card, were again fitted to all four corners. The slick, aerodynamic and lightweight D-Type would win numerous races the world over, including the coveted 24 Hours of Le Mans on three occasions.

Jaguar had developed a successful customer program with the D-Type and in addition to the 18 Works cars, delivered 53 customer cars to privateer teams. However, once the 3-liter rules came into effect, the D-Type lost its advantage on the track. The last 25 chassis were to be converted to “XKSS” specification – which was little more than a thinly-veiled racer for the road. However, after 16 cars were completed, a fire ripped through the Brown’s Lane factory, destroying 9 cars and all of the tooling. In one fateful night, the Jaguar XKSS met an abrupt end. With only 16 examples completed, the XKSS is among the rarest, most desirable of all road-going Jaguars. With values reflective of their rarity and near-mythical status, it is little surprise that numerous replicas have been built– some truer to form than others.

Lynx Motors stands head and shoulders above all others in the world of handcrafted Jaguar recreations. Founded by Guy Black in 1968, Lynx Motors of England earned its reputation by servicing and racing original C-Types and D-Types. With their vast experience and intimate knowledge as well as a world-class restoration facility, Lynx began to create stunning recreations of the D-Type and XKSS based on Jaguar mechanicals. Each Lynx-built car is individually handcrafted out of aluminum to precise, concours-correct standards. Suspension components and drivelines are sourced from road-going E-Types for ease of maintenance and repair. Their low-volume, hand-crafted nature ensures exclusivity yet they are also usable on the road and well-suited for driving enthusiasts. Lynx Jaguars are highly collectible in their own right and values reflect their exquisite quality and desirability.

This 1956 Lynx XKSS is the 9th of 11 built to date, and one of two configured in left-hand drive. It presents in superb condition, showing just 491 miles. It was built between 2014 and 2015, using a late 1970 E-Type as a donor that supplied its chassis number, suspension components, and running gear. Lynx bases each XKSS on a bespoke, handmade aluminum tub which is constructed and finished to exacting standards. It is skinned with handcrafted alloy panels, formed in the same manner as Jaguar used when building the original XKSS. The body and tub are built to precise dimensions and scale to ensure the Lynx is virtually identical to the factory-built XKSS. Close inspection reveals the outstanding craftsmanship and care that went into the creation of this truly breathtaking car.

It is finished in traditional British Racing Green over black, in tribute to Steve McQueen’s car. Riding on period correct Dunlop knock-off alloy wheels and Vredestein Sprint Classic tires, the look is pure 1956. The all-alloy body is in excellent condition, with high levels of fit and finish. Paintwork is excellent and shows very little use which is reflective of the supremely low miles. It is correctly detailed with the correct style XKSS windscreen, covered headlamps, subtle alloy bumpers and of course the seemingly incongruous luggage rack that Jaguar famously installed in-lieu of a proper boot.

Lifting the alloy bonnet reveals a well-detailed 4.2-liter XK inline six (lifted from the 1971 donor car), which has been updated with early style polished cam covers and a trio of Weber carburetors as used on the factory-built cars. The engine bay is finely detailed and has been meticulously sorted to ensure reliable running. Special attention was paid to the cooling system which now features an alloy radiator. In addition, clutch action has been improved and a fuel cutoff added for safety. Lynx craftsmanship is exceptional, and even the factory dry-sump tank is replicated for accuracy, though this engine uses a standard wet-sump arrangement. The engine runs beautifully, feeling eager and very powerful. The side-exit exhaust emits a growling, evocative soundtrack.

The quality of the Lynx continues to impress inside, with simple seats covered in black leather, and a basic, upholstered dash panel. A subtle nod to Mr. McQueen is the “cigarette glove box” which was a unique feature on his XKSS, to keep his ever-present smokes and lighter at hand. This is the only known Lynx car to feature that detail. There are few concessions to luxury, of course, but it is nonetheless a cozy and reasonably comfortable place to spend time enjoying that sonorous engine and the magnificent view out the windscreen. Performance is thrilling as one would expect from a tuned 4.2 in such a lightweight package.

The Lynx XKSS is an exquisitely built machine that proudly carries the spirit of Jaguar’s legendary Le Mans racers. With prices for the original 16 XKSS chassis’ exceeding seven figures, these highly cherished Lynx cars rarely appear on the open market. We are delighted to offer this fabulous example - lightly used and meticulously maintained in top order by a noted Jaguar collector, vintage racer, and enthusiast. It has been gently used and shown at numerous events, including the International Jaguar Festival in 2016. It remains fresh and ready for any number of driving events worldwide.

Please note the car is titled as a 1970 Jaguar.

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