Sat Aug 13 2016 21:20:29 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)
1951 JAGUAR XK120 DHC ABBOTT
An important masterpiece of post war British coach building
Mentioned and shown in photographs in a variety of important books about Jaguar and the Jaguar XK 120 in particular
Restored in New Zeeland to probably the highest standard possible
A fine and unique Jaguar in brand new show condition throughout
A potential prize winner on any important Concourse d’ Elegance worldwide
Matching numbers, Engine number: W 3023-7 (matching), Chassis number: 660750 (matching), Gearbox number: JH 5703 (matching)
Original color scheme
With Heritage certificate, articles in books and magazines and an extensive restoration reportage
The year 1948 saw the introduction of one of the greatest post war classic sports cars; the Jaguar XK 120.
The Jaguar XK 120 established revolutionary new standards, the car combined racing car performance with practicality. Above that, the beauty of design was breathtaking with timeless pure lines and elegance. Together with the introduction of the new model, the XK 120 Jaguar launched the new 3442 cc six cylinder twin cam engine.
This superb piece of machinery gave the XK 120 a top-speed of 120 mph, unrivalled in it’s decade. The Jaguar XK 120 open two-seater (OTS) was accompanied by a fixed head coupe (FHC) model in the year 1951. A drop head coupe (DHC) model saw the light of day in 1953.
ABOUT THIS SPECIFIC EXAMPLE
This XK120 is an important masterpiece of post war British coach building. The car is based upon the famous Jaguar XK 120 OTS chassis. The chassis went in 1951 from Jaguar straight to the Sussex based firm Abbot of Farnham. They created in order of a customer (Mr. Mitchell from New Zeeland) a very special four-seater drop head convertible.
This special ordered custom built Jaguar was finished two years before Jaguar cars presented the Jaguar XK 120 drop head coupe two-seater.
Only one Jaguar XK 120 four-seater DHC has been built by Abbott.
The Jaguar XK 120 Abbott was found in a barn in 2002. At the end of 2002, the restoration of the Jaguar started to the highest possible standards by a world renown restoration company from Christchurch New Zealand.
The full frame-off restoration took over 5000 hours to be completed early 2006. At the 2007 Essen Techno Classica the Abbott won the first prize as best restored car of the show. Various classic car magazines published about this unique Jaguar XK 120 Abbott.
Abbott was a traditional coach builder in these days and could be remembered for the estate car conversions it built on big Fords during the 1950s and ’60s, which were marketed under the Farnham name (Abbott was based near Farnham in Surrey, UK). The company’s history encompasses many glamorous names and Bentley, Bristol, Nash-BMW, Lagonda and Rolls-Royce were just a few of the marques bodied by Abbott.
ED Abbott founded the company in October 1929 but its origins go back much further and the company has its roots at the very start of the motor industry. In the late 1920s a contract came in from Lagonda, to build the standard coachwork for its Rapier, and this was followed by other regular work from Frazer Nash-BMW and Talbot. Its high-profile customers included ex-prime minister David Lloyd George and writer Rudyard Kipling, who both ordered Abbott-bodies Rolls-Royces.
Following the wishes of Mr. Mitchell Abbott to create an all-new four-seater bodywork inspired by the ravishing lines of the Jaguar XK 120. All panels were hand beaten of aluminium sheet and fitted on an ash frame. The Abbott design was subtly lengthened to create extra space for the additional rear seats. This could not be done without altering the lines of the original XK 120 design. To realize excellent proportions Abbott rounded the original straight slope of the front wings and made them carry on lower towards the end of the doors. From there on the waist line was made to curve up more expressively as original and sweeping down over longer stretched rear wings. The extra length was created by placing the boot further behind on the chassis. The added length was brilliantly hidden within the shape of the rear wings. Optically this design solution was complimented by oval shaped spats covering the rear wheels. The result was a surprisingly balanced and harmonious design.
The interior was especially fabricated for the Abbott and the design was largely taken over from the XK 120 OTS. The rear bench was of course unique and it followed the shape of the front seats. The dashboard was given a varnished walnut veneer facia with the same overall layout as the XK 120 OTS. All bright work at the exterior were XK 120 OTS items except for the unique windscreen frame.
Most of the other parts used to built the XK 120 four-seater were also early Jaguar XK 120 items except for the door locks which were borrowed from the ‘Jaguar’ SS90/SS100 models. The drop head convertible top had been tailor made for the Abbott. Keep in mind that this automobile saw the light of life a year before the (two-seater) Jaguar XK 120 drop head coupe (DHC) was presented!
As ordered by Mr. Mitchell the automobile was fitted with extras like a pair of fog lamps, a radio, and a tow bar. Abbott completed their work on the special XK 120 early 1952, as they had the car shipped to Mr. Mitchell in New Zealand.
ABOUT THE RESTORATION
The Jaguar has been built up to the highest possible standards. Perfect inside and out. All new wiring was fitted. Nuts and bolts, screws, washers and other small parts of the original type were used.
The restoration took about 5.000 hours of work. More than a 1000 digital pictures are available.
After thirty years on the road the owner decided to restore the Jaguar. He moved the car to a barn where it was partly dismantled and stripped of paint. For some reason the owner changed his mind. He left the car alone and the next twenty years the Jaguar sat quietly in it’s Christchurch barn. After discovery by a local restorer in the year 2002 the car was acquired and an extensive restoration followed.
Before the start of the restoration, the car was studied in detail. Crucial information was found in books and in old photographs. All original parts were put together to see if the car was still complete. It was complete, even the side screens were still around. The hood frame was found to be heavily twisted, and the boot lid had been exchanged with a badly fitting XK 140 item in the past.
The Jaguar was fully dismantled in a photographic recorded process and the body was taken off the chassis. The body and chassis were stripped off paint completely and the bright work was stripped of old chrome.
The ash frame has been fully restored and conserved. The original body panels were repaired and new panels were hand beaten from aluminium sheet. The body job was carried out meticulously, the shape had to be perfect in this phase. All panels and bright work were mounted to check for perfect fit.
The body base structure and the panels were primed with special epoxy for aluminium.
Epoxy is the best primer to protect and conserve the metal. After that a layer of spray filler was applied and sanded way down to smoothen the body. The restoration has been carried out with a minimal amount of filler (thin and crisp restoration). The bodywork was primed, sanded, painted cream white (glasslike).
All chrome parts, including the special Abbott windscreen frame and grille, were stripped of old chrome and triple plated to perfection.
The chassis was sand blasted inside and out, meticulously cleaned, primed and spray painted black according to original specifications. The inside of the tubular chassis was extensively corrosion proofed. Fuel tank has been recreated using the original example.
All mechanics, engine, gearbox, rear axle, steering gear and brake system were fully restored and overhauled within the smallest tolerances. The engine was given some mechanical upgrades like forged pistons. Dyno-tested for three hours before it was mounted to the car.
A new walnut veneer varnished wooden dashboard was fabricated, as original. All gauges like the odometer, speedometer, rev. counter and all switches have been taken apart for full restoration, overhaul, and calibration.
The seat frames, springs and inner material were fully restored and renewed. The seats, rear bench, door panels, dash top and bottom were upholstered with first class red Connolly leather. The floor was upholstered with fine red wool carpet.
The hood frame was stripped of paint repaired and fully restored as were the side screen frames. The soft top, side screen trim and the tonneau cover have been crafted from the highest quality mohair.
We can conclude that this fine and unique Jaguar XK 120 Abbott is in a brand new show condition throughout. A potential prize winner on any important Concourse d’ Elegance worldwide. Matching numbers, and restored with utmost precision. The presence of a complete history file, Heritage certificate, articles in books and magazines, and the extensive restoration reportage, give convincing insight about the importance of this unique Jaguar.
We can be very short about the condition of the exterior of the car as every single detail is in a mint condition. The panel fits are excellent, the chrome is in excellent condition even as the windows, the wheels etc. etc.
The interior is even as the exterior in a brand new condition. All the materials used are period correct and in as new condition. The special Abbott designed wooden dashboard is also as new and all the meters and gauges are in a perfect working order.
Most of the time a just restored car is not driving very well just because everything has to be set.
In this case it is completely different. The car is in the condition of a mint top concours car but the driving is as perfect as from a just prepared holiday/rally car. Absolutely amazing and difficult to describe how superb this Jaguar is driving.
Thu May 01 2014 17:08:33 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)
Using hyperbole to describe the 1964 Ferrari 250 GTO is unnecessary. The car speaks for itself. It is one of the last (of thirty-six) Ferrari GTOs ever built. This particular one, chassis #5571, was the first of the Series II bodies. The 3.0L V-12 produces about 300 horsepower and it completed multiple endurance races, winning its class in the Daytona Continental 2000km (this car's first race), Sebring 12 hour, and Nassau TT.
The driver is Mr. Derek Hill, who won the Ferrari Challenge International Championship in 1995 and the Formula Dodge West Coast in 1996, and raced a Bugatti EB110 at Le Mans. Additionally, he has a special attachment to this car as it was his dad, Fomula One Champ Phil Hill, that raced it in Daytona and Nassau. But what is the car really like? Well, "It's so hard to describe just how incredible it is to drive this car at speed. I mean, it's really a certain kind of ecstasy." We wish we could give you a first-hand account but, just like you, we're relegated to dreaming. If you're still reading, thank you. But we know why you're here, go on now, watch the video.
Open Day Saturday 10th August
Hilton & Moss and Castle Sportscars are pleased to announce that we are once again opening our doors for another one of our ever popular open days.
This one is a tad different from the norm in that we are not only opening up our showroom at Parsonage Farm from 09:30-11:30 for teas and coffees and a peruse of the eclectic mix of classic and sportscars but then from 12:00-14:00 a complimentary hog roast lunch will be served at our workshop and restoration facility at Raynham Road in Bishops Stortford. There you will receive a guided tour of the workshops that are not normally open to the general public where you will see behind the scenes of the largest manufacturer approved bodyshop in the UK and also our fascinating restoration workshops. Members of staff will be on hand to answer any questions you may have during the tour.
As ever with our open days we will be supporting Little Havens Childrens Hospice and we sincerely hope you will help us with this by entering our raffle to win a Lotus Evora for a day to take to the Lotus Factory for a personal guided tour! Only £1 per entry!!
Please let us know if you will be attending in order for us to gauge numbers for the day.
Barry meets up with car collector, customizer, racer and restorer Bruce Canepa and takes an inside look Canepa Design where some of the top restorations anywhere are being worked on every day. Episode 17004