Silverstone Auctions British Marques Sale

Jaguar XJ220s and super-rare custom XJS star at May auction

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleWhat could be better than owning one Jaguar XJ220? How about two – along with a rare distant cousin?

Next month’s Silverstone Auctions British Marques sale offers nearly a combined 1,100hp from the two XJ220s alone.

The incredible supercars form part of a collection dedicated to cars from Great Britain, on offer at Heythrop Park in Oxfordshire on 11 May.

Lot 429: 1995 Jaguar XJ220 – £325,000 to £375,000

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleThe Jaguar XJ220 stunned the world at the 1988 British Motor Show, with the promise of an exotic V12-powered supercar with four-wheel drive.

Many placed deposits, but demand would be hit by a dramatic downturn in the collector car market at the time.

Coupled with this, Jaguar also ditched the 4WD setup, moving to rear-wheel drive and a turbocharged V6 engine. Unsurprisingly, the initial flurry of 1,500 interested buyers fell to just 275 cars being delivered.

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleThose that stayed the course were not disappointed, though. Their £470,000 XJ220 was still beautiful, and would claim the title of fastest production car in the world in 1992.

Martin Brundle, of sports car racing and Formula 1 fame, clocked 212.3mph on the banked Nardo test track, although his record would be beaten after just a year

This particular right-hand-drive Le Mans Blue car has covered an astonishing 700 miles from new, and was found as part of a private collection in Malaysia.

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleIt means the Smoke Grey leather interior is as good as when in left the factory in 1995, and the 549hp 4.0-litre V6 has barely been run-in. Despite that, the car has been subject to a thorough overhaul by XJ220 specialists, Don Law Racing.

More than £25,000 was spent on maintenance, with the fuel tanks replaced, plus a set of new XJ220-specific Pirelli tyres sourced from Jaguar’s Classic Works department.

Lot 410 1997 Jaguar XJ220 – £300,000 to £350,000

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleThe second XJ220 up for grabs is this 1997 left-hand-drive example. Originally delivered to a buyer in Germany, we imagine this Spa Silver car made for fast progress and an impressive sight on unrestricted Autobahns.

Having covered 20,800km (12,925 miles) from new, the car has certainly seen more use than Lot 429, with the lower estimated selling price reflecting that.

It has also notched up six owners in the UK, but does have a fully documented history file.

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleLot 410  has also undergone recent mild restoration work at Jaguar’s own Classic Works department, with an unspecified but ‘significant’ amount spent there.

Included in the sale is an appropriate number plate, with Lot 410 wearing ‘220 XK’ just in case anyone needs reminding what the car is.

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleAlthough overshadowed by later hypercars such as the McLaren F1, the XJ220 still remains a formidable performance machine. If anything, these Big Cats are a comparative bargain.

Being capable of 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds, and setting a lap record around the Nürburgring-Nordschleife is pretty impressive, after all.

Lot 447: 1989 Railton F29 Claremont – £60,000 to £70,000

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleOne of the quirkier lots for sale at the Sale of British Marques is this incredible creation, one of only two ever made.  

Based upon the running gear of a contemporary Jaguar XJ-S, but with bodywork styled by William Towns, the F29 Claremont pays tribute to the classic Railton land-speed record cars of the 1930s.

Towns had previously designed the Aston Martin DBS V8, along with the wedge-shaped Lagonda, but had plans for an updated version of the Jaguar XJ-S convertible.

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleConstantly updating his sketches in hope of producing a car he referred to as the XJX, Towns seemed destined never to see his dream become reality. However, a chance meeting with millionaire John Ransom would change that.

With Ransom providing the money, Towns was able to put his dream into production, with Park Sheet Metal responsible for the streamlined bodywork. The company also constructed the XJ220, providing a neat link with the two lots above.

Priced at £105,000 when new in 1991, just two Railton F29s were produced, with this particular car staying in the possession of William Towns until his death in 2006.

Silverstone Auctions British Marques SaleIt’s powered by a 280hp Jaguar V12 engine, has covered 13,700 miles and comes with an in-depth history file.

Performance was somewhat sedate, with 0-60mph taking 8.1 seconds. The aerodynamic styling allows for a top speed of 143mph.

Although clearly not as quick as the XJ220s, the F29 Claremont is certainly rarer, and could potentially draw just as big a crowd of enthusiasts at any car show.

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