As the XK120 came to a production close in 1954 and the XK140 was offered to the world. Jaguar offered not only the possibility of a 20MPH increase in top speed as the name suggests, but a lot more in the way of track technology for the road. As the C-Type evolved into the D-Type the XK140 benefited from numerous performance upgrades over its predecessor but the best of all was the MC (or SE in Europe) option. While the XK140 received better suspension in general, upgraded brakes, more interior space and slight exterior changes, the MC option boasted maximum performance for the enthusiasts who wanted a quick road car, or even a car to take to the track as a privateer entrant which many did. The MC option gave customers 210HP as opposed to the regular 190HP, thicker torsion bars, wire wheels, dual exhaust, and of course the infamous C-Type Head with bigger valves and more compression. The ultimate gentleman’s racer of the period, the 140 could be outfitted in numerous colors and a variety of additional options were available.
The example on offer here, a 1957 Jaguar XK140 MC, Chassis # S813021DN, according to its JDHT Certificate was delivered to a Mr. Patrick W. Moore of New York, NY. Final assembly was completed for its ordering customer on November 22nd, 1956. Factory records show that this example was incredibly well optioned from new with a variety of very special features. Not only was it a factory MC optioned car but it was also ordered with a Close Ratio gearbox, Overdrive, and special White Piping on the seats. A very rare combination with only 27 MC’s believed to have been fitted with overdrive from the factory, add in a Close Ratio Gearbox, and it could easily be one of a handful.
Early history is not exactly known other than it has come to be known that the car was always in the tri-state (NY/NJ/PA) area its entire life and that by 1977 it was still in the hands of the original owner. Upon its acquisition by its second owner in 1977 the car was reported to be highly original and showing original low miles. It wasn’t long after that the owner used the car as collateral in a real estate transaction. The car went into storage and was nearly forgotten about until 1995 when the loan was paid and the car acquired once more by its second owner. It was always covered and in both outdoor and indoor storage. While the paint was peeling, interior cracked and the car in rough overall condition, remarkably it ran and drove with little trouble even after long storage. At this juncture the car was sent to marque expert George Hughes of Authorized Imported Cars of Flemington, NJ. There it stayed until 2008 when a total nut and bolt restoration was authorized.
The restoration entailed a total body off strip of the entire car down to the chassis. Everything was completely stripped and the car was restored, piece by piece, each component, from the ground up. The engine and transmission received a total rebuild as did the transmission and all related components including the suspension and brakes. The body work was completed correctly with any minor rust cut out and replaced with metal. Only when the body was completely straight and with perfect gaps was the car then primed and blocked until completely flat. The correct factory color of Cream laid over expert body work. The contrasting interior was finished to its original specification of Black leather with white piping, also completed to a very high standard. The only change to the interior at this time, beyond original, was the addition of a wooden veneer dash fascia and a moto-lita steering wheel, both tasteful and common upgrades. The nicely chromed wire wheels were freshly wrapped with correct style tires, the trunk and engine bay correctly detailed along with a new top and restored side curtains.
The car was completed in 2010 and to date has been carefully stored, and seldom driven with only 317 sorting miles contributed to the original 52,239 miles. It has been shown locally but ideally is a fresh restoration ready for JCNA Judging and should be considered a real contender for any concours, even on a national level. More recently the car has received fresh brakes and detailing in preparation for its sale. As a result it is a turnkey example that has been properly dialed in by the experts at Authorized Imported Cars.
Cosmetically the car shows tremendously well with consistent show quality work everywhere. The paint is smooth, flat and deep throughout. The gaps and panel fitment are consistently correct and tight everywhere with good door fitment, not an easy thing to achieve on an XK during a restoration. All of the chrome, rubber and glass show incredibly well with no flaws noted. The headlights and tail lamps show as new and even the door jams have been nicely tended to and are consistent with the rest of the work completed. Upon entering the interior one finds nicely completed upholstery work to factory specifications, correct materials, and tightly fitting the proper contours of the seats, dash, door tops and rear stowage compartment. No item was skipped or overlooked and the presentation is near flawless.
The Engine bay is very tidy and shows as a fresh restoration does with cleanliness everywhere and attention to correctness paramount. One item to note is that the Heater is absent but restored and included in the sale, it was simply not installed as the owner originally intended to use the car and the heat was of no practical interest. Otherwise we can note many original spot welds that have been preserved during the restoration along with nice seems in the metal and overall a good body that shows to have been accident free, in the engine bay. Comparing the Data plate, engine number, head number, and JDHT Certificate all coincide to this being a matching numbers example. The trunk continues the trend of concours restored, properly trimmed and nicely detailed as well. Entering the spare wheel compartment shows that nothing was skipped with all of the tools restored and in place along with a matching spare and nicely detailed spare wheel well. The underside shows light signs of use and road dirt from the 317 miles traveled but otherwise is not over restored or excessively shiny. It is exactly as it should be finished from the factory and presenting as restored and in order with no issues of any sort noted.
The real enjoyment of course is starting this fabulous 104MC, it starts instantly and easily with the automatic choke coming and going exactly as it should when cold. It idles steadily showing strong oil pressure when warm and holding temperature as well. This example has had the benefit of being driven just enough to work out any post-restoration kinks, but not enough to deteriorate any of the comprehensive restoration. Engaging the clutch is accurate, selecting a gear is very precise and driving the car overall exudes a job well done and a very tight feel. There are no shakes or rattles and the entire car is very well put together. The engine revs freely to the upper scale of the RPM’s and makes fantastic power; Overall a dialed in XK140MC with no known needs and a car that could be driven to any local concours on any given Sunday.
Jaguar produced some very special road cars in the 1950’s, the XK120, XK140 and XK150 all have their special attributes, and there are always a few to choose from on the open market or in an auction room. The reality however is that the XK140 combines near XK150 technology with the classic uncompromising style of the XK120, the ultimate presentation of Jaguars base-line for success on both the road and the track. Considering the unique options of close ratio gearbox, overdrive, and a real MC car from the factory in classic colors this is well ordered car that has been expertly restored by a JCNA winning Marque Specialists. A sporting opportunity for any enthusiast or serious collector and offered with JDHT Certificate, top, top bows, side curtains, pre-restoration photos, heater box, tools, jack, and spare.
Available Documentation: (Click on the links below to view the file)