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Jaguar XK150: Buying guide and review (1957-1961)

Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961) Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961) Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961) Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961)
It’s no exaggeration to say that when the Jaguar XK120 was unveiled at the 1948 London Motor Show it changed the face of sportscars. Here was a car that made rivals look outmoded and was fast, yet it was also relatively affordable. So it surprised nobody when Jaguar massively under-estimated demand for the car, which would prove to be a huge hit on both sides of the Atlantic. 
 
But even the XK120 was looking dated by the time it was given an update in 1954 to become the XK140, which in turn evolved into the XK150 in 1957. Modernised in many ways, the 150 was the ultimate iteration of the XK theme and itself would sire various versions. The big step forward for the 150 was the adoption of disc brakes, which Jaguar had developed with Dunlop and used very effectively on the later C and D-types. This feature gave the 150 technical credibility and, apart from the very low-volume Jensen, a feature the competition lacked. A new B-type cylinder head increased power, which had progressed from the 120’s 180bhp to the 140’s 190bhp, to 210bhp.
 
Visually, the 150 was far more changed than the 140 had been over the 120. The old two-piece flat windscreen was looking very dated now and it was replaced by a wraparound one-piece item. The dramatic fall and rise of the wing line was considerably straightened and the cabin widened. This was achieved by putting the doors on a diet; the slimmer versions benefited the interior space considerably. 
 
For many, this extra practicality makes the XK150 the most sought after of the three XK models. Driving it is still a vintage experience though; an E-Type feels far more modern in comparison for example. But the XK150 isn’t slow. It’ll keep up with modern traffic easily enough, but what really impresses is the XK engine’s flexibility as it’ll go from a standing start to 100mph in 36.4 seconds – using only top gear throughout. For a car launched in 1957, that’s pretty damned good. 
 
The XK150 has probably been better revered in more recent years, when it could be judged as a stand-alone car rather than compared alongside its peers in period. The concept was, not surprisingly, ageing by the end of the decade, but it was the ultimate example of the incredible XK range.
 
Which one to buy?
 
If you’re on a budget, an XK150 coupé is the way to go as these fetch far less than their open-topped siblings. If you can afford an open car, you’ve got a choice of two configurations: Open Two-Seater (OTS) or Drophead Coupé (DHC). The former looks the prettiest but its weather equipment is basic, which reduces the car’s usability. The latter has a much more usable folding roof, but it doesn’t sit flush when stowed, which gives the car an ungainly appearance. 
 
Despite its prettier lines, the OTS is less sought after than the DHC, and hence it’s less valuable. It’s also less usable, so whether you’re buying as an investment or to enjoy some touring in, the XK150 DHC is the way to go. 
 
If your pockets are especially deep, seek out an XK150 S, which is the ultimate incarnation. The most powerful XK150 of all, genuine cars are rare, but quite a few regular examples have been uprated – so check that you’re getting the real deal. With a so-called straight-port head and triple two-inch SUs, power was raised to a claimed 250bhp. 
 
The horsepower race was on in the States, and to compete Jaguar added XK engines enlarged from 3.4 to 3.8 litres, and offered an S variant of the 3.8 which, supposedly, produced 265bhp (although this was actually much nearer 200bhp!). 
 
There were thus 12 different XK150s available before production tailed off in late 1960, in readiness for the launch of the E-type.
 
Performance and specs
 
Engine 3781cc, six-cylinder
Power 265bhp @ 5500rpm
Torque 260lb ft @ 3000rpm
Top speed 135mph
0-60mph 7.2sec
Fuel consumption 16mpg
Gearbox Four-speed manual overdrive
 
Dimensions and weight
 
Wheelbase 2591mm 
Length 4496mm
Width 1638mm
Height 1397mm
Kerb weight 1473kg
 
Common Problems
 
• The XK150’s construction consists of steel panels over a steel chassis, so there’s plenty of metal to corrode. It all needs careful inspection but home in on the lower portions of the front and rear wings, the B-posts and the boot floor. Also check the sills. 
 
• The chassis tends to last well but the outriggers can rust badly and the anti-roll bar mountings can dissolve – repairs for this latter area can be surprisingly costly. Also analyse the front mounts for the rear leaf springs; repairing those properly can also be expensive. 
 
• The XK engine will just keep going if it’s looked after. That means regular oil changes and ensuring the coolant doesn’t get too dilute; if anti-freeze levels aren’t maintained internal corrosion is guaranteed. 
 
• A worn engine will display the classic signs; blue exhaust smoke under acceleration and low oil pressure; a healthy powerplant will display at least 50psi at 3000rpm. 
 
• The parts to rebuild an XK straight-six are costly, so even if you do everything yourself you can’t expect to do it on a shoestring. Get it done professionally and the cost can treble or even quadruple. 
 
• Most XK150s have a four-speed Moss manual gearbox with no synchro on first gear. As the synchro is integral with the gear, and those gears are no longer available, you’ll just have to double-declutch once things have worn out. The layshafts and roller bearings wear too, but these can be sourced easily enough. 
 
• A three-speed automatic gearbox was offered as an option and although it’s strong it wears out eventually. Listen for scraping noises under acceleration and see if it’s slow to change from second to third. If it is, a rebuilt gearbox isn’t too costly but the labour to take the transmission out then refit everything can double the bill. 
 
• Sagging leaf springs at the back is par for the course, while tired bushes are also common. These are easily fixed though; overhauling the suspension is likely to transform the way the car drives. 
 
Model history 
 
1957: The XK150 goes on sale in the UK, superseding the XK140, with a 3.4-litre engine that produces 190bhp in standard form, 210bhp in SE form, while pushing out a more impressive 250bhp in XK150 S spec. Big differences include a new windscreen, servo-assisted disc brakes all round plus a wider grille. There’s a choice of four-speed manual (with or without overdrive) gearboxes, along with a Borg Warner three-speed auto. There’s also an improved hood design plus wind-up windows for all cars. 
 
1959: Larger 3.8-litre engine sees standard power increase to 220bhp, with the most potent S model now produces 265bhp. By this point the SE had been killed off, leaving regular or S editions only. 
 
1961: The E-Type supersedes the XK150. 
 
Owners clubs, forums and websites 
 
• www.jec.org.uk
• www.jaguardriver.co.uk
• www.jaguarownersclub.com
• xkclub.com 
 
Summary and prices 
 
If you’ve settled on the idea of buying an XK150, then there are a lot of different price points to consider. As a basic guide, you should pay around £115,000 for an outstanding 3.4-litre Coupe model, with more average examples costing between £45,000-£75,000. For a Roadster you could be looking at up to £225,000, although expect to find something usable for £100,000-£135,000. The big money is paid for the 3.8-litre S model, but in general you can add around 15 per cent onto the price if it’s an S-spec car. 
Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961) Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961) Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961) Jaguar XK150 buying guide (1957-1961)
Last updated: 24th May 2016
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Jaguar XK150 cars for sale

22 Search results
Jaguar XK150
3000 225000 GBP
  • 1959 Jaguar XK150 S FHC

    POA POA

    This is such a special car, not only is it 1 of just 44 3.4 S spec FHC models ever built for the home market, this genuine UK car was owned by the famous Coombs & Sons (Guilford) in 1961, then in 1965 owned by Phil Henshall, the founder of the original XK Club who kept the car until 1976. The car was then exported to Australia and it stayed with just one owner for 35 years. An extensive history file keeps record of maintenance and restoration work in Australia where it was kept in regular use and probably the biggest test in almost sixty years was a 2,264 mile rally from Melbourne to Darwin involving around 45 hours of driving time. This was the XK register Commemorative run in 1996 which the car completed with ease. In 2013 the XK returned to the UK, was re-issued with its original registration mark 939 KPK and has had just the one owner since. This really is wonderful opportunity to purchase a genuine UK S spec XK that has true provenance and a well documented history that makes the car very unique and difficult to repeat. During the 1960's, when owned by the founder of the XK Club, the car had to go back to Jaguar with major engine issues and at this point the engine was officia

    • Year: 1959
    • Mileage: 58399 mi
    For sale
    Classic and Sportscar Centre
  • 1958 Jaguar XK150 3.4 Roadster

    £139,995 £139,995

    Many consider the XK150 Roadster as the ultimate XK with its truly stunning, elegant looks. Jaguar launched the Roadster in 1958 to meet demand from the U.S and today it is the Roadster version that is arguably the most sought after of the whole XK range. This wonderful top class example was supplied new in the U.S by Jaguar Cars New York, despatched on the 1st July 1958. The majority were supplied new in the U.S and this particular car was carefully sourced in Florida by the last owner over seventeen years ago and brought over to the UK for a full body off restoration and conversion to right hand drive. The car was chosen prior to rebuild for several reasons to include being a matching chassis and engine number car, and for the superb original structural condition of the car. We know from the history file that this XK was in regular use in Texas throughout the 1980's and by 1997 was found for sale in the State of Florida. The XK was purchased in need of restoration and was shipped to England where a no expense spared restoration was carried out. Over a six year period the XK was fully stripped down to the bare chassis and subject of a top class rebuild to show condition. The bare

    • Year: 1958
    • Mileage: 3000 mi
    For sale
  • 1958 Jaguar XK150 3.4 DHC

    £109,995 £109,995

    This beautiful automatic Jaguar XK150 3.4 DHC has arrived with us in excellent order having being subject of a major programme of work in 2013. UWK 398 is a genuine matching numbers car, still retaining the 3.4 litre engine it left the factory with. The Jaguar left the factory in Cream with Red upholstery and was one of just 595 LHD DHC automatic examples ever supplied. UWK 398 was supplied new by Jaguar Cars New York and first registered to D B Ortman. The Jaguar spent 41 years with the same family in the U.S before being sold to the UK with a guarantee from the dealership that the car had only covered a genuine 29000 miles. This XK150 now has a recorded mileage of just 31,000 having had substantial programme of restoration work and some use in the UK since. The car is finished in Cream/Old English White with Red upholstery as it left the factory and presents beautifully with chrome wire wheels and Black mohair hood. In 2013 a Bristol based restoration Company stripped this car to bare metal, carried out any new metal work required and completely re-painted the car in Old English White. The interior was sympathetically restored with original door cards being rebuilt using aged, fa

    • Year: 1958
    • Mileage: 29000 mi
    For sale
  • Jaguar XK150 RHD 3.4 Roadster

    POA POA

    Mayfair 020 7125 1400 | Maldon 01621 879579 Jaguar XK150 Special Equipment RHD Roadster This excellent 3.4 Roadster is an original 1958 Special Equipment car that was originally delivered to San Diego, California before being re-imported to the UK where it received a full professional chassis-off restoration with final assembly and detailing by noted specialists the Fullbridge Restoration Company. At this time the car was sensitively converted to RHD and has subsequently benefitted from a number of additional upgrades to improve performance and handling including JD Sport front brakes with four pot callipers, JD Sport engine cooling system and JD Sport 16 inch chrome wire wheels. With less than 1000 miles covered since the restoration was completed in 2013, the car remains in fantastic cosmetic condition and from a mechanical perspective has effectively just been 'run-in'. Finished in the classic colour combination of Jaguar Dark Blue with Grey interior and accompanied by a good history file with numerous invoices and a photographic record of the restoration, it now offers its new owner a chance to acquire a highly desirable and sensibly upgraded classic British sports car in nearl

    • Year: 1958
    For sale
  • 1958 Jaguar XK150 3.4 S Roadster

    $225,000(£183,892.50) $225,000(£183,892.50)

    1958 Jaguar XK150S Roadster Chassis No. T831825DN Engine No. VS1681-9 Cream with Red Interior With its sensuous, wind-cheating body, dual overhead cam engine, and 4 speed manual gearbox and overdrive, the Jaguar XK150 became the final evolution of the much-lauded XK 120 and 140 models. The XK150 incorporated a more blended front fender, smoother body surfacing, and the windscreen moved back to allow for a larger hood. The highly desirable “S” roadster featured a smooth, one-piece windscreen void of any side vent glass and accented by beautiful chrome trimmed side glass. This sweeping trim line blended into the windscreen, creating a tidy upper body that could be quickly converted into a roadster simply by rolling down the windows and stowing the top. A small interior cover elegantly capped the rear deck. The exterior was further devoid of side mirrors, fog lamps, an antenna, or hood mascot – adorned only by two delicate chrome “S” emblems along the upper leading edge of each door. Fewer than 900 XK150S left hand drive examples were built. The 150S offered a significant performance advantage over the base model with its three 2 inch SU carburetors, straight-port head, upgraded camsh

    • Year: 1958
    • Mileage: 2630 mi
    For sale
  • 1959 Jaguar XK150

    £3,000 £3,000

    Completely original 1959 Jaguar XK150! Part of a recent estate sale before which it had been stored for the past 40 years! Over $3k has been invested to get this Jaguar running, driving and stopping perfectly. The opportunity to own an original XK150 as nice as this does not come around often. Take a look around and give me a call with any questions. John Snell

    For sale
  • Jaguar XK150 S RHD 3.8 Fixed Head Coupe

    POA POA

    Mayfair 020 7125 1400 | Maldon 01621 879579 Jaguar XK150 S 3.8 Fixed Head Coupe. Black with Tan hide. One of only 118 right hand drive 3.8 S fixed head coupes built. An original matching numbers UK right hand drive example. Original factory colour specification. One lady owner until 2007. Retrieved from over 35 years in heated storage by its second owner. 57,311 miles from new, original registration number. Major recommissioning by JD Classics including full bare metal repaint, cylinder head overhaul, engine bay detailing, suspension overhaul, new brakes, stainless steel wire wheels and new tyres, full rechrome. Superb original interior with optional factory wood rim steering wheel. A rare and correct example in superb condition. Please contact us for more details.

    • Year: 1960
    For sale
  • JAGUAR XK150 DROPHEAD COUPE

    £99,995 £99,995

    1958, finished in Carmen red with grey leather interior and a black mohair hood. This is an original manual with overdrive UK RHD car with matching numbers. The car has had a full restoration and we have recently re-commissioned the vehicle after long-term storage. The valuable registration number 1 BKX is transferable but is included in the price of the vehicle. Old style buff log book, chrome wire wheels. Stunning example.

    • Year: 1958
    For sale
  • 1960 Jaguar XK150 SE Roadster

    $142,500(£116,465.25) $142,500(£116,465.25)

    1960 Jaguar XK 150 SE Roadster s/n S832124DN, Engine stamped V7524-8 Light Cream with Red Leather One of the 1950s most iconic motor cars, the Jaguar XK series have always had a strong following. With a growing numbers of shows, clubs, and events catering to these cars, they continue to be in demand. As the final model in the XK production line, the 150 made several technological advances over the 120 and 140, and provided a bigger cockpit area which accommodates a larger driver more comfortably. The 150 was also the first Roadster equipped with roll up windows. Of the three variations produced, the XK 150 Roadster is by far the most valuable and sought after. In total, just 1,339 150 Roadsters were produced, considerably less than in the 120 or 140 series. This car was built at the time the factory was transitioning to the production of the very limited 3.8L engine of which only a few Roadsters were produced with in late 1960, and in 1961, before the Series I E-Types were introduced. This car is the higher horsepower SE model, and one of the first cars built with the elongated heavy taillights featured on the rare 3.8 series of late 1960 through 1961. Its chassis number denotes it

    • Year: 1960
    • Mileage: 60101 mi
    For sale
  • 1958 Jaguar XK150 S 3.4 OTS

    POA POA

    This one owner Jaguar is a very original car that is currently undergoing a Show/Driver level restoration. It is getting increasingly harder to find good, honest original cars such as this one! The fit on this roadster is very good, and the car many factory features and original parts such as 4-speed with overdrive, original air filter box, carburetors, voltage regulator, and much more. This car has always been well serviced and maintained. The top is relatively new, as well as the tires. Most of the original parts and hardware under the bonnet are in good serviceable condition. In 1961 the original owner had an unstamped 3.8 block installed by the dealership for greater performance, but the head is the original one that came with the car. It also has dual exhaust. It comes with a Heritage Certificate of Authenticity which verifies it is still in its original color combination. Part of this XK-150S’s history is that it was raced and comes with programs and a very thick binder of documentation from birth until present. Upon completion of its restoration, this XK-150S roadster will present an excellent opportunity for the Jaguar collector to have a sought after classic Jaguar that wi

    • Year: 1958
    • Mileage: 4177 mi
    For sale
  • 1959 Jaguar XK150S

    $139,500(£114,013.35) $139,500(£114,013.35)

    This 1959 Jaguar XK150S Roadster wears an exquisite color combination. Cotswold Blue with red leather interior. This matching numbers example has been owned by the same gentleman for the last 40 years. It's an absolutely beautiful un-restored original car that's nothing but honest and also comes with it's heritage certificate. It's also in excellent mechanical condition. Don't miss this one for only $139,500.

    • Year: 1959
    For sale
  • 1958 Jaguar XK150

    $21,500(£17,571.95) $21,500(£17,571.95)

    This 1958 Jaguar XK150 Coupe is an excellent matching numbers car to restore. Blue with brown interior. It comes partially dissembled with the motor and transmission out of the car. For only $21,500.

    • Year: 1958
    For sale
  • 1961 Jaguar XK-150 DHC

    POA POA

    (SOLD) This low mileage very nice original XK-150 DHC, numbers matching Jaguar has been well cared for and garage kept. It was part of a Jaguar collection and was off the road for over 20 years prior to our purchase. Has recently completed a show driver restoration by Classic Showcase. With superb craftsmanship and excellent fit as well as attention to details. The restoration process includes; complete repaint, color sand and buff, engine and transmission rebuild, all system gone through top, boot, rubber seals, and chrome. The 3.8 engine was rebuilt to factory specifications rebuilt clutch, all new brake parts, restored shocks, new suspension bushings, gas tank restored and epoxy sealed, new fuel pump, all electrical components, gauges, knobs, switches rebuilt, or replaced, top bows and seat frames restored, stone guards restored, new manifold and exhaust system. Lots of time was spent performing metal work and fitting the body and doors. New interior were fitted by our craftsman

    • Year: 1961
    • Mileage: 69080 mi
    For sale
  • 1960 Jaguar XK-150 3.8 DHC

    POA POA

    (SOLD) This Jaguar is a superb example yielding a rare engine size of 3.8. This was the largest displacement engine of the period for an XK-150. The 3.8 engine was featured near the end of the production of the XK. Also, a significant difference in the rear tail light fixture. No expense was spared in this impeccable and proper restoration to the highest standards by Jaguar Professionals. During this extensive restoration the engine, transmission, drive train and all systems were gone through, body was taken to bare metal, fitted to perfection, interior trimmed in a beautiful green color contrasting combination, brite work re-plated to show level and all hardware panels in proper finish. It would be hard to find any XK-150 DHC, let alone one of the finest in the world restored to a Show level. This is a great opportunity to own a rare and spectacular vehicle that has matching numbers. This is for the discerning collector who demands the best quality.

    • Year: 1960
    For sale
  • 1961 Jaguar XK-150 FHC

    POA POA

    (SOLD) The third and final iteration of the XK range, started with the XK-120 in 1948 and continued with the XK-140 in 1954. By 1957 the XK design was looking a little dated, and Jaguar had set new standards with the introduction of a monococque design, the Jaguar Mk 1, the previous year. At the time it did not grab the worlds attention in the way that its predecessors had. However in hindsight it became recognized as a superb car, with more refinement than any previous XK. As before with the XK range, standard (steel wheel) and special equipment models were available, but a bewildering range of models was to evolve. First, in 1958 the S model was announced, equipped to special equipment specification, and with a more powerful engine, though still of 3.4 liter capacity. Late in 1959 further options became available with the introduction of the 3.8 liter engine, and the XK150 was available not only in 3.4 liter versions, but two versions (normal and "S") of the 3.8. All three body versions were available with all the engine options. Production all but stopped after 1960, but a very few cars appear to have been manufactured in 1961.

    • Year: 1961
    • Mileage: 36867 mi
    For sale
  • 1961 Jaguar XK-150 3.8 DHC

    POA POA

    (SOLD) This XK-150 received a spectacular, no-expense spared restoration done by Jaguar professionals in one of the finest shops in the United States. It has only been campaigned and shown since 2011, where it received three 100 point scores, and became a JCNA national champion. In 2012, it has been shown in two JCNA sanctioned shows, and scored 100 points in each!

    • Year: 1961
    For sale
  • 1960 Jaguar XK-150 DHC

    POA POA

    (SOLD) This classic XK 150 has undergone a complete professional restoration and has always been garage kept and only driven sparingly since its restoration. This Jaguar is an excellent running and driving vehicle ready for driving and showing.

    • Year: 1960
    • Mileage: 39235 mi
    For sale
  • 1960 Jaguar XK150 3.8 DHC

    POA POA

    This Jaguar is currently undergoing a comprehensive restoration to a show/driver level, but may be painted or customized with performance upgrades and/or comfort options of your choosing. To date, this Drop Head Coupe has been thoroughly gone through and its body has been disassembled, photographed, and taken to bare metal with all proper body work being fitted to perfection. The interior is in the process of being re-upholstered by master trimmers in our upholstery department, along with a proper and perfectly fitted convertible top. The brite work will be re-plated as needed, with all hardware panels done in their proper finish. A rare vehicle with limited ownership and matching numbers, this XK-150 yields a rare engine size of 3.8 liters, which was the largest displacement engine of the period that was available for this model. The 3.8 engine model had a few distinct changes, amongst them a significant difference in the rear tail light fixtures. With an estimated completion date of spring 2015, this iconic and very unique XK-150 will present a great opportunity for the collector or enthusiast seeking to add a rare piece of Jaguar history to his or her collection. A pictorial DVD

    • Year: 1960
    • Mileage: 29577 mi
    For sale
  • Jaguar XK150 Drophead Coupe

    £129,950 £129,950

    HOME STOCK EMAIL JAGUAR XK 150S DROPHEAD COUPE 3.8L MANUAL The Jaguar XK150 was produced from 1957 to 1961 and was the first production car available from Jaguar to feature disc brakes all round. Of the 2,672 Drop Head Coupes produced only 663 were right hand drive. First Registered 31st October 1959 Finished in Old English White with Red Leather Interior 4 Speed Manual Gearbox with Overdrive 3.8L "S" Complete with original registration document, handbook and previous MOT certificates Right Hand Drive Red Carpets Black Roof £129,950 FURTHER INFORMATION FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ON THIS VEHICLE PLEASE EMAIL OR CALL OUR SALES TEAM SALES@SUPERVETTURA.COM T. +44(0)1344 620072 M. +44(0)7541 888310 FACEBOOK /SuperVettura TWITTER @SuperVettura INSTAGRAM /SuperVettura

    • Year: 1959
    For sale
  • 1958 Jaguar XK150 S OTS

    POA POA

    Chassis number: S830674DN History. Harold Sunshine graduated from the Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Arts in 1928 and would go on to be a textile designer operating his own company Harold W Sunshine & Co. Harold ordered the car in 1958 whilst living in Paterson, NJ. In 1966, Harold would become the Director of the Empire division of the Jaguar clubs of North America. In 1969, Anthony R Conigliaro of Brooklyn, NY, purchased the car. Italian born, Anthony ran his company Maranello Garages Inc. which focused on the repair of Ferrari’s, Jaguars and other ‘exotic’ cars. Anthony drove the car for a year before putting the car up on blocks, where it sat untouched for almost 45 years until it was repatriated to the UK by the current owner. This matching numbers car has 21,000 miles and is completely original and unrestored. Mostly original paint and all of its original delivery literature and tools are included. This is an opportunity to recommission / restore a completely original XK150S OTS that is in incredibly sound order. POA MAKE ENQUIRY First Name Surname Email Telephone Contact Address Company Address 1 Address 2 Address 3 Address 4 Postcode Image Gallery prev next

    • Year: 1958
    For sale
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