Paris

5-6 February 2014

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Lot 13

1956 Jaguar XK140 SE Drophead Coupé

  • Chassis no. S818897BW
  • Engine no. G8807-8S

Sold for €67.200


210 bhp, 3,442 cc DOHC inline six-cylinder engine, three-speed automatic gearbox, torsion bar independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 2,591 mm

  • Rare LHD, automatic gearbox, SE example
  • Formerly owned by Albert R. Pincus
  • High-quality restoration


The Jaguar XK120 was introduced in 1948 as an open roadster, which was officially called an “open two seater”, and it gained a comely fixed head coupé sibling in 1951 and a convertible, or drophead, example with roll-up windows in 1953. For 1955, it was redesigned with larger torsion bars, better brakes, and rack-and-pinion steering. The engine had higher-lift camshafts, resulting in increased horsepower, which was now rated at 190. There were also some modest appearance changes, as the grille now had fewer bars that were spaced farther apart, the bumpers were made to full width, and flashing directional signals were located in the front wings, just above the bumper.



The new model was designated XK140, and two “Special Equipment” variants were added, the XK140 M, which included a crankshaft dampener, wire wheels, a dual exhaust, twin fog lamps, and windshield washers, and the XK140 MC (also known as SE), which added the big-valve cylinder head from the C-Type, raising horsepower to 210. The three body styles continued in production through to mid-1957, with each available in any of the three variations. A Borg-Warner automatic gearbox became optional on fixed head and drophead models.



This XK140 SE was completed on 13 September 1956, and it was delivered to Jaguar Cars in New York on 5 October. It was one of a very few Special Equipment XK140s with left-hand drive, an automatic transmission, and the C-Type cylinder head, and it found its way to the collection of World War II hero, author, and car collector Albert R. Pincus. During his ownership, it was completely restored, repainted from the original cream to light grey metallic, and upholstered in burgundy leather. During his tenure, it won many awards.



In December 2010, it was imported into France and registered with its current number of BE 743 XG. Since then, it has been maintained by Americo Car Garage in Argenteuil. In the last three years, it has seen the replacement of all its anti-vibration mounts, the installation of an electronic ignition, the replacement of the brake master cylinder, the reconditioning of the hot water heater, and the replacement of the fuel pump.



It comes with a file of service invoices since 1988, a photograph collection from the restoration, and many historic documents. Included with the car are its jack and tools, an English owner’s manual and service and workshop manuals, with the latter also in compact disc form, and a French translation of the driving instructions. Also included is a bespoke car cover in British Racing Green.






Moteur six-cylindres en ligne, 3 442 cm3, 210 ch, deux ACT, boîte automatique trois rapports, roues avant indépendantes par barres de torsion, pont arrière rigide avec ressorts semi-elliptiques à lames, freins hydrauliques à tambours sur les quatre roues. Empattement: 2 591 mm.



  • Rare version SE conduite à gauche et boîte automatique
  • Ex-Collection Albert R. Pincus
  • Restauration de haut niveau




Présentée en 1948 sous la forme d'un roadster désigné officiellement « open two seater », la Jaguar XK 120 gagnait en 1951 une superbe version coupé, puis en 1953 une carrosserie cabriolet avec vitres remontantes. En 1955, elle connaissait une évolution, avec des barres de torsion plus grosses, de meilleurs freins et une direction à crémaillère. Le moteur recevait des arbres à cames plus pointus, ce qui faisait passer la puissance à 190 ch. On notait aussi quelques modestes changements esthétiques, les lames de calandre étant moins nombreuses et plus espacées, et les pare-chocs occupant toute la largeur de la voiture. Des clignotants trouvaient place sur les ailes avant, juste au-dessus des pare-chocs.



Le nouveau modèle prenait le nom de XK 140, et deux versions « Special Equipment » apparaissaient au catalogue : la 140 M, qui comportait un amortisseur de vilebrequin, des jantes à rayons, un double échappement, deux phares antibrouillard et un lave-glace, et la 140 MC (connue aussi sous l'appellation SE), qui bénéficiait en plus de la culasse Type C à grosses soupapes et dont le moteur développait 210 ch. Les trois styles de carrosserie restaient au catalogue jusqu'à la moitié de l'année 1957, tous disponibles dans les trois versions. Une boîte automatique Borg-Warner était disponible en option sur le coupé et le cabriolet.



Sortie d'usine le 13 septembre 1956, cette XK 140 SE était livrée le 5 octobre à Jaguar Cars, à New York. Il s'agit d'une des rares XK 140 Special Equipment dotée d'une conduite à gauche, d'une transmission automatique et de la culasse Type C. Elle a trouvé sa place dans la collection d'Albert R. Pincus, héros de la deuxième Guerre Mondiale, auteur et collectionneur d'automobiles anciennes. Alors qu'elle était en sa possession, elle bénéficiait d'une restauration complète, sa couleur passant de crème à un gris clair métallisé, avec une sellerie en cuir bordeaux. A cette époque, elle remportait de nombreux trophées.



En décembre 2010, elle était importée en France et immatriculée BE 743 XG. Depuis, elle a été entretenue au garage Americo Automobile, à Argenteuil. Au cours des trois dernières années, elle a vu le remplacement de toutes les fixations anti-vibrations, l'installation d'un allumage électronique, le remplacement du maître-cylindre de frein, la réfection du radiateur de chauffage et le remplacement de la pompe à essence.



Elle est accompagnée d'un dossier de factures d'entretien depuis 1988, d'un ensemble de photos de la restauration et de nombreux documents historiques. Elle est livrée avec son cric et ses outils, les manuels d'entretien et d'atelier (ce dernier également sous la forme d'un CD), et une traduction en français des instructions d'utilisation. Une housse sur mesure de couleur « British Racing Green » vient compléter l'ensemble.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more