Jaguar to Build 25 Continuation D-type Race Cars for Well-Heeled Enthusiasts
The first prototype will make its debut this week at Retromobile in Paris
It all started with the six "missing" Jaguar E-type "Lightweight" competition models that Jaguar had originally planned to build for a total of 18 cars, but for whatever reason—just didn't. Then it was the nine XKSS road cars, derived from D-type racers, that burned in a factory fire while under construction.
Beginning in 2014, Jaguar painstakingly completed these production runs, creating brand-new lightweight E-types and XKSS models that are so authentic that they were given the actual serial numbers of their lost counterparts.
And now it's the D-type's turn. Perhaps Jaguar's most celebrated historic racing car with its slippery profile and eye-catching tail fin (which helped with stability on the high-speed Mulsanne Straight), the D-type won the 24 Hours of Le Mans outright for three consecutive years from 1955 through 1957.
Jaguar planned to build 100 D-types in-period, but as things turned out, just 75 would be produced. Now, the company will build the remaining 25 cars originally planned for at its Coventry factory.
"The Jaguar D-type is one of the most iconic and beautiful competition cars of all time, with an outstanding record in the world's toughest motor races. And it's just as spectacular today," says Tim Hannig, Jaguar Land Rover Classic Director in a press release.
"The opportunity to continue the D-type model's success story, by completing its planned production run in Coventry, is one of those once-in-a-lifetime projects that our world-class experts at Jaguar Land Rover Classic are proud to fulfill."
The continuation D-types will be available in either 1955 "Shortnose" or 1956 "Longnose" specification, to be decided by the individual client's wishes.
The first engineering prototype has been completed as a Longnose car and will be unveiled for the first time in public at this week's Retromobile classic car event in Paris, France.
No pricing information is yet available, and while a continuation car will likely ask for less money than the period examples which failed to sell at nearly $9 million and $10 million at last month's Scottsdale collector car auctions. Stay tuned to Automobilemag.com for more Retromobile coverage later this week.