This one-off Jaguar could be one of the standout surprises of the show.
This year’s annual Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance will host the reveal of the new Mercedes Vision Concept rumored to be a convertible version of the Maybach 6 and the BMW Roadster Concept that will spawn a successor to the Z4 . While these concept cars will potentially steal the show, this Jaguar restoration project could turn out to be one of the standout surprises. Why, you may ask? Because it’s quite possibly the rarest Jaguar ever made.
A team of 13 staff at Classic Motor Cars have been painstakingly restoring a Jaguar XK120 SE back to its former glory. After working on the top-secret project for the last two years, the team will be lifting the wraps off the completed car for the first time at Pebble Beach. Over 12,000 examples of the XK120 SE were built between 1948 and 1954, which were sold as roadsters, drophead coupes, and fixed-head coupes. Under the hood was a 3.4-liter straight-six that made the XK120 SE capable of reaching a top speed of 125 mph which was impressive for the time. But what makes this car special is that it’s a one-off example with a bespoke body produced by Pininfarina.
“We always said that we would unveil the car for the first time at Pebble Beach and that is exactly what we are going to do,” said Peter Neumark, Chairman of the Employee Ownership Trust that runs CMC, who originally found the car. “I will have the privilege of taking the cover off the car at the world famous Concours d’Elegance in California and I think that car collectors and aficionados from around the world are going to be astounded by what they see.” The one-off Pininfarina XK120 SE was commissioned by New York car importer and avid gearhead Max Hoffman, and was first shown to the public at the 1955 Geneva Motor Show.
It was later acquired by a new owner in Germany who intended to restore it. Sadly, they never got round to it, and the rare Jaguar was left to rust. It was then sold to Classic Motor Cars which took on the challenge of bringing it back to life. After working on the project for thousands of hours, the finished car will soon be revealed to the public at Pebble Beach on August 20. “There is little trace of the car’s history, but we are certain that there was only one XK120 by Pininfarina produced, which makes this one of the rarest Jaguars in existence,” said David Barzilay, Chairman of CMC’s operating board.