By the time the XK150 was launched in May 1957, Jaguar had won Le Mans four times and was about to do so once again - what a backdrop against which to market a new sports car. Though the newcomer was a logical progression of the XK140, subtle changes to the bodywork gave this final iteration of the XK models a distinctly more modern air. The split windscreen was replaced with a single sweep of toughened glass and the scuttle height was raised, along with the waistline. The bonnet was widened and the bulkhead on the Roadster was moved rearwards by four inches. Inside, the walnut dashboard of the XK140 was replaced by one trimmed in leather. Thinner doors gave more interior space. The standard engine was the 3.4-litre DOHC straight-six unit of the XK140, but most early 150s were fitted with the optional SE version that sported a cylinder head with larger exhaust valves and a pair of 1.75-inch SU carburettors. Still more power was available from 1958 in the form of the 'S' engine and its straight-port head linked to three SUs, for which 250bhp was claimed. The XK150 was also the first production Jaguar to be equipped with disc brakes. At launch, the XK150 was offered in Fixed Head Coupe (FHC) and Drophead Coupe (DHC) guise, the Open Two-Seater Roadster (OTS) following in 1958. By the time the model was superseded by the E-Type, some 4,445 FHCs, 2,672 DHCs and 2,265 OTSs had been produced.
Now offered, is a right-hand drive two-owner XK150 Drophead Coupe finished in Carmen Red with Red interior and Black hood. A home-delivered export model built in 1959, it is said to have been ordered with an overdrive gearbox, 16-inch wire wheels, twin fog lamps and a stainless steel luggage rack. The XK started life in Liberia, returning to the UK in circa 1970. The vendor informs us that in his care it has always been garage maintained and attention has always been given as required. In the last five years, this has included new: wiring throughout; horns; radiator and water hoses; brake discs, flexible hoses, Kunifer metal pipes and cylinder seals; stainless steel exhaust system; road springs and front and rear dampers; hood; set of Pirelli tyres. 'UKV 872' reportedly has a slight leak from the top of the gearbox, a worn driver's door window regulator, some corrosion in the bottom of the doors, a somewhat perished windscreen rubber and a sticking ammeter needle (the vendor tells us a tap on the fascia does the trick!). Evidently the car has never had seat belts but does feature a couple of non-standard items - namely XK150 'S' badges and a 37-gallon fuel tank. As the vendor says, this well-travelled XK150 has a "mellowed patina" and could be much enjoyed exactly as it is or further improved by its next owner. The Jaguar comes complete with driver's handbook and JDHT Heritage Certificate.