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Manufactured between 1954-1957, the Jaguar XK140 served to succeed the XK120 model. While the XK120 model has a more sporty appearance, the XK140 still proved to be a commercial success. A total of 8,937 Jaguar XK140 vehicles were produced between 1954-1957.
Exterior changes marked some differences between the XK140 and the XK120. Increased front and rear bumpers with overriders and flashing turn signals are a couple of crucial elements that were introduced with the XK140.
Upgrades the marked the difference between the XK140 and the XK120 included:
- Increased interior space
- Improved brakes
- Higher suspension travel
- Telescopic shock absorbers
Jaguar XK140’s were made available in three different versions:
- Fixed Head Coupe
- Drophead Coupe
Roadster models had a light canvas top that could fold out of sight behind the seats. Leather interior pervaded roadster models, including dashboards. Reduced door top and scuttle paddle positions allowed roadsters.
Operating with four-speed manuals, Jaguar XK140’s, later on, became the first Jaguar sports vehicle that offered automatic transmission.
Rack and pinion steering design made the XK140 more comfortable to operate.
XK140 Fixed Head Coupe
Fixed Head Coupes featured:
- Lengthened roof
- Windscreen placed further forward
- Reduced front wings
- Longer doors
All of these elements added up to easier entry with more interior space.
XK140 Drophead Coupe
XK140 Drophead contained:
- Bulkier lined canvas top
- Fixed windscreen
- Small rear seat
- Walnut-veneered dashboard and door cappings
XK140’s Unique Design
Part of what separates XK140’s from the pack is the long hood design of the vehicle. Underneath the hood sat 210 horsepower thanks to:
- 3.4 liter
- Cast-iron inline-six
- Two SU Carburetors
- Aluminum head
- Dual-overhead camshafts and valves
The XK140 featured an engine that was moved forward. One advantage that was gained from moving the engine ahead more from the XK120 was taller drivers had more legroom to operate the vehicle. Lengthening of the XK140 roofline allowed room for two small rear seats.
Full bumpers and chrome additions gave the XK140 a more administrative look compared to its predecessor. Around the time of 1954, car exports still dominated the market. The XK140 was built with a left-hand drive for exportation.
The grill size of the XK140 remained largely the same as the XK120 but became a one-piece cast unit that included fewer and broader vertical lines.
XK140 Name Origin
XK120’s received their name from:
- X=Experimental engine type
- 120=top speed in miles per hour
Improvements upon the XK120 led to enhanced power as the next line of speedy roadsters.
During 1953, 1955, 1956, 1957, the Jaguar XK140 proved itself as a new and improved model with near consistent victories at the 24-hour marathon of LeMans.
Additional rally victories for the XK140 were achieved through:
- Circuit of Ireland
- Monte Carlo Rally
- Scottish Rally
- Morecambe Illumination Rally
Stock XK140’s could hit a top speed of 125 mph. The average 0-60 mph speeds were 8.4 and 9.1 seconds.
End of the XK140
Production of the Jaguar XK140 model ran through 1957 and was replaced by the XK150.
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