- Delivered new to Garage de Claparede, Geneva, Switzerland
- Competed against the Alloy XK120 in the Stekborn-Eichholzli Hill Climb
- Bought and restored by Urs Schmid
- Presented in its original factory colours and specification , with steel wheels and spats
A lovely example of the Jaguar XK120 roadster, and highly unusual in being supplied new to Switzerland and never, so far, having left the country.
The car was ordered by Garage de Claparèd of Geneva, with manufacture beginning on 28 June 1950 and delivery taking place on 26 July 1950. This makes it one of the very earliest steel-bodied cars to arrive in the country. The Jaguar enjoyed quite a bit of local competition in that first decade.
Lausanne garage owner Robert Jenny, a Jaguar XK120 devotee and an active member of the Ecurie La Meute team, borrowed the car to contest the Steckborn-Eichhoelzli hillclimb on 24 April 1955, enjoying an exciting high speed duel with seasoned racer Albert Scherrer (who won out, it should be said).
After this outing, little is known of the car through to the early 1970s, when Swiss XK connoisseur Urs Schmid came upon it at a car dealer’s premises in Moelin, north-western Switzerland. As it was rather dilapidated, he had it restored before selling the car on in 1975 to Hans Zimmermann, owner of a shoe-manufacturing company in Romanshorn, and a very keen member of Switzerland’s classic Jaguar-owning community.
Enthusiastic though he was, Zimmerman ordered modifications that perhaps today would be questioned. He swapped the original steel wheels for wires, which also entailed changing the back axle to obtain new hubs; he repainted the car red; and he had the interior retrimmed in the kind of soft goatskin used by his shoemakers!
When Georg Doenni of GB Classic Cars, Roggliswil, Switzerland, purchased 670387 in 2011, all of these changes were reversed to the exact specification of the car as it left the factory, and as it is today. This work also entailed re-installing the spats over the rear wheels to complete the tapering contours that are so emblematic to the pure and early XK120 roadster. With the outward appearance of the car now on the way to factory-perfect once again, a complete overhaul of the drivetrain was undertaken by GB Classic Cars, with the engine rebuilt by the renowned Mollet workshop in Dulliken, Switzerland. What you see today is a fabulous example of this all-time Jaguar great with a Swiss backstory that almost certainly makes it unique.