1959 JAGUAR XK150 DHC

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1959 JAGUAR XK150 DHC

Background

The XK was a momentous car for Jaguar. It was fast, beautiful, and as they'd find out in decades to come, pretty timeless, too. While the E-Type (or XK-E stateside) hogged all the attention, the Jaguar XK remains a collectable classic for many car lovers. Its low-slung bodywork is a thing of art, its engine a turning point in Jaguar's history, and its fairly attainable status an opportunity not worth missing. The final version in the XK line was the XK150, a car that received styling and mechanical upgrades before Jaguar jumped on to the aforementioned next big thing in sports cars, the E-Type.

Produced for less than half a decade, the XK150 was available in three body styles: standard coupe, convertible 'Drophead Coupe', and the roadster. Unlike on the E-Type, the powertrain choices included iterations of a 3.4-litre and 3.8-litre straight-six 'XK' engine, with up to 265 bhp. It shared many crucial parts with the preceding XK140 but it was supplied with disc brakes on all four wheels. Impressive considering not many cars at the time had disc brakes at all. But then not many cars could do sub-10 second 0-60 mph, either.

The Vehicle

For this 1959 Jaguar XK150 Drophead Coupe to exhibit similar 0-60 mph times, you'd need to devote some time, patience, and money, because while complete with largely all the bodywork and parts, it does require restoration. Some of the noteworthy bits about this XK150 Drophead Coupe include the original engine and chassis numbers (the vendor is said to have verified that with Jaguar Heritage). He mentions that the car rolls freely, the engine isn't seized, and the majority of chrome bits included with the car are either new or restored.

The vendor further says that according to Jaguar Heritage, it's likely that the car's had a registration plate change in the past; the V5 renewal is under process. And that despite the age and condition, the car is devoid of major rust issues. You can read more details about that in the specific sections below, in addition to checking out the photos in the detailed gallery at the end of the description.

On the Outside

By the time the XK150 was brought out, it was evident that the original XK's graceful appearance wasn't as simple anymore. It was by no means a bad-looking car, the XK150, but in comparison to the XK120, it did appear bigger. There were some changes made to the design, even when coming from the XK140. For instance, the windscreen was no longer a split-type. The characteristic waistline didn’t swoop like on the previous cars. The overall design looked similar, no doubt, but the XK150 is distinguishable, especially for those who know their Jaguars. It was also the final iteration of the car before Jaguar launched the E-Type.

On the XK150 DHC here, while it's a restoration project, it's got nearly the entirety of its bodywork in place. The ragtop is gone, and the left rear panel isn't on the car, although it's included along with nearly all of the chrome trims and bits, lights, spare rim, etc. There's of course some rust and signs of the previous repair done to the car. The vendor mentions that there's just one point on the car where there's perforation due to rust. He adds that all chrome bits are in excellent condition except the rear bumper which was re-chromed at some point earlier in the car's life but it wasn't done well.

On the Inside

The interior of the XK150 also witnessed some changes when coming from the previous XK models. The dashboard was now trimmed in leather, a move away from the earlier models' wooden type. The DHC came with two rear seats, which may not be the most useful, since the space at the back is limited. But this was unlike the roadster which had just two seats. The dashboard design is clean, too, with the glorious Smiths gauges taking up most of the central area of the dashboard. There's also an overdrive switch to the right of the steering wheel, placed better ergonomically than others. The handbrake is positioned close to the passenger seat and the lights are controlled using a single knob in the centre of the dashboard.

All the gauges on the XK150 here are present without any damage, and the seats too have some life left in them. The convertible top isn't on the car (the frame is) and the interior, on the whole, is in a serviceable state. The odometer reads 56,000+ miles but the vendor can't verify if this is accurate. The re-chromed/new bits with the car also include interior fitments like window winders, etc. The car also has a spare rim, and the boot, like the rest of the interior, looks alright.

Underneath

The XK150 could be bought with either a 3.4-litre or a 3.8-litre version of the XK straight-six engine. The car shared the platform and mechanicals with the preceding versions, although there were improvements made on the way. The inclusion of disc brakes was a major one. This car, which left the factory more than half a century ago, has a 3.4-litre engine with twin SU carbs. According to the period specs, that would've made 210 bhp and 216 lb.ft. That, in ideal conditions, would’ve enabled the XK150 to reach 60 mph from a standstill in 8.5 seconds.

It's evident from the photos that the car was worked on in the past (more details below), and the vendor mentions that there's no major rust issue. More importantly, its brakes aren't seized, so the car rolls just fine. The engine has a similar story; it's not seized, either. The car comes with overdrive, and the vendor says that the Moss gearbox is possibly original, too.

History Highlights

The car bears the registration PSN 186, which the vendor is informed by Jaguar Heritage, isn't its original registration, so a plate change must’ve happened in the past. The vendor is in the process of getting the V5 updated with the details of the previous keeper from whom he purchased the car in September 2020. He mentions that the car was previously worked on but then parked in a dry factory. There's no significant structural rust but the rear wings have been removed and only partially repaired, he adds. The matching engine and chassis numbers (also confirmed by Jaguar Heritage) are a strong plus point in favour of the car's originality.

What We Think

Looking at JEC's data, there were only 662 examples of the Jaguar XK150 DHC produced in RHD. And this is one of them. Not only rarity but what's even better about this project is the possibility of restoring this neat XK knowing that the basics are alright. The engine, chassis, bodywork, and interior, all appear to be a good place to start. At an estimated £25,000 - 35,000, it has the chance of being turned into something special without having to spend a crazy amount of money to purchase the base car. Restored examples of similar vintage tend to fetch about thrice the price of this.

Viewing is always encouraged, and as stated this car is with the vendor in Edinburgh. To arrange an appointment please use the ‘Contact Seller’ button at the top of the listing to make an appointment. Feel free to ask any questions or make observations in the comments section below, or try our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

If needed, Footman James classic car insurance and Classic Concierge offer storage options plus we have a list of contacts who can help with transport and shipping.  

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we never stop encouraging bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at those vehicles which are delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using simple cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, return policy does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

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Seller

John Taylor

  • Location: Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
  • Seller Type: Private
  • Odometer Reading: 56132
  • Chassis Number: S62 72 65DN
  • Engine: 3400
  • Gearbox: manual
  • Steering position: RHD
  • Colour: Grey
  • Interior: Grey Leather
  • Estimated Price: £25,000 - £35,000

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