We tend to think of the XJ220 when it comes to Jaguar supercars, but that wasn’t the first. Not by a long shot. No, that honor belongs in perpetuity to the XKSS. And since Jaguar was in town to reveal the “new” model at the LA Auto Show, they brought one by Jay Leno’s Garage for a spot of tea and crumpets, so to speak.
If you’ve been monitoring these pages (or those of most any other automotive news outlet), you’re likely already familiar with the story of the XKSS and its rebirth.
Essentially a road-going version of the Le Mans-winning D-Type racer, the XKSS was built in limited quantities and could very well be considered the world’s first supercar. It was all power and purpose, with low weight and no frills.
Sadly Jaguar lost a few examples in a fire at its Browns Lane factory back in 1957, so when the Jaguar Classic department was looking for its next undertaking to follow the Lightweight E-Type, the XKSS was the natural choice.
Jaguar is now crafting nine “continuation” examples, each built to the same exact standards as the originals. And you can bet they’re all being snapped up by people just like Jay, with deep pockets and endless love for classic automobiles.
Little wonder, then, that Leno has spent a solid half-hour talking shop in this latest video with JLR Classic director Tim Hannig about everything that’s gone in to creating this contemporary classic. He doesn’t even get to drive the thing, but already brought us that experience with an original a couple of years ago.