1958 Jaguar XKSOLD

1958 Jaguar XK150 Fixedhead Coupe for Restoration *Barn Find*

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We are proud to offer to the public market a very special Jaguar which has been hidden from the world since 1969. After being laid up for a period of forty years in a barn, on blocks from 1969 to 2009, this XK150 was ‘discovered’ by a serious motor-enthusiast and multiple motoring-club member in 2009, who, forgetting that he already had several projects on the go, decided that an XK150 restoration was the next itch to scratch. Understandably, this was a bridge too far for his already overloaded private workshop, so after some gentle persuasion, here is the once-loved XK150 Fixedhead Coupé, ‘AE 34’.

This car is steeped in period history. Its first owner was the West Bromwich garage owner Alan Eccles - a renowned racing driver of the period and latterly a team owner from c1957-1970. He was best known for racing Formula 3 500cc in the 1950’s, then Cooper, Lotus and Chevrolet.

Ordered new by Alan in 1958, this XK150 remained at supplying dealers, Ashmores, until he took delivery and registered the car in 1959. It was specially ordered with the unusual optional gearbox: the ultra rare close-ratio version, thought to be less than 200 XK’s were so fitted.  This was perhaps because he was a racing driver after all – also the car still retains the very unusual added-extra of a rear tow bar. Correspondence with the family of the late Alan Eccles confirms that the tow bar and GB badging were fitted specifically so Alan could pull his 500, then his Formula Junior race car behind him to UK and European race meets. Given the recent interest in historic race car transport – restored, this car would make a very interesting slant on that theme.

The cars’ story moves on, through a few owners [all detailed in the accompanying green buff logbook] to the immediately previous owner to the current enthusiast. In late 1969, having run the car for two years and, incidentally, keeping a detailed maintenance log [all on file] - this then young engineer took a job abroad. Unable to bring himself to part with his beloved Jaguar, which was then running well, he decided to store it away, up on blocks and covered with rugs, in the barn at his Shropshire home - for what he imagined would be a two or three year period at the most. However, one overseas posting led to another, then another and yet another & so on. And somehow, when home on leave, there always seemed to be much more important "family" things to attend to rather than commission his XK150. He did visit the sleeping car when he could, turn the engine over now and then with some oil down the bores, plus he did carefully store all the seats away in the attic. He promised himself that, one day, he would use the car again but eventually, after 40 years, he realised that was now rather unlikely.

And thus, one must remember that this car was registered for the road, 55 years ago, in 1959 and went into aforesaid barn in 1969. Therefore, although now needing a total restoration one could say that it represents, mechanically at least, in effect a TEN YEAR OLD XK150 - which must, at the very least, be intriguing?

Very importantly, this car was originally registered with the registration ‘AE 34’ which since 1959 has always carried a small chrome dot between the 3 and the 4 to denote the engine capacity, 3.4. This plate is on the V5C which accompanies the car and also on the official heritage certificate of the vehicle. Even the Jaguar key ring has an ‘AE 34’ plate attached. Whilst the registration number is transferable, we feel strongly that it has a very special association to this car and, therefore, the two components together retain a higher value than they would individually.

Now offered publicly at auction for the first time in its history, AE 34 is sure to make for one of the most rewarding and deserving restoration propositions. Please be under no illusion that this barn find car requires nothing short of a complete restoration, but take comfort in the fact that virtually all component parts are in situ. For instance, bodywise, it is clear that the boot floor and sills are unlikely to be salvageable - however, all the panels including the bonnet, doors, wings, roof and boot lid can be restored. The complete original red interior is in the car and still carries the factory chalk markings on some of the seat undersides to denote which car on the production line they were destined to adorn. Also onboard is the original Motorola ‘wireless’, with the correct registration AE 34 on the original faded label. The close-ratio gearbox is still present and the engine, whilst not running, does turn.  The wheels and brakes are not seized and the car rolls freely meaning it can be transported from the sale on a suitable trailer. There is a rumour that the car may have also been fitted with the factory ‘Powr-lok’ limited-slip differential but this cataloguer is unable to confirm at this time.

It should also be noted that the engine numbers on both the head and the engine block match those on the body ID plate, the Heritage certificate and the V5C.

In our opinion this is one of the finest bases from which to restore a very fine 1950’s motor car. With skill, patience and a sympathetic eye this could be one of the most beautiful examples of the marque when complete. We look forward to seeing the finished article on the concours lawn of a major UK event soon!

Reference Number 271023

as of 4/14/2014

Car 1958 Jaguar XK
Transmission Manual Shift 
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