The Jaguar D-Type is a sports racing car that was produced by Jaguar Cars Ltd. between 1954 and 1957. Designed specifically to win the Le Mans 24-hour race, it shared the straight-6 XK engine and many mechanical components with its C-Type predecessor. Its structure, however, was radically different, with innovative monocoque construction and slippery aerodynamics that integrated aviation technology, including in some examples a distinctive vertical stabilizer.
Engine displacement began at 3.4 litres, was enlarged to 3.8 L in 1957, and reduced to 3.0 L in 1958 when Le Mans rules limited engines for sports racing cars to that maximum. D-Types won Le Mans in 1955, 1956 and 1957. After Jaguar temporarily retired from racing as a factory team, the company offered the remaining unfinished D-Types as street-legal XKSS versions, whose perfunctory road-going equipment made them eligible for production sports car races in America. In 1957 25 of these cars were in various stages of completion when a factory fire destroyed nine of them.
Total production is thought by some to have totaled 71 D-Types, including 18 for factory teams and 53 for privateers (plus an additional 16 D-Types were converted into road-legal XKSS versions). Jaguar is quoted as claiming it built 75 D-Types.
The design applied aeronautical technology, revolutionary at the time. The "tub", or cockpit section, was of monocoque construction, mostly comprising sheets of aluminium alloy. Its elliptical shape and comparatively small cross-section provided torsional rigidity and reduced drag. To the front bulkhead was attached an aluminium tubing subframe for the engine, steering assembly, and front suspension. Rear suspension and final drive were mounted to the rear bulkhead. Fuel was carried in the tail and the designers followed aviation practice by specifying a deformable Marston Aviation Division bag in place of a conventional tank.
Mechanically, many features were shared with the outgoing C-Type. Its front and rear suspension and innovative all-round disc brakes were retained, as was the XK engine. Apart from the new lubrication system, the engine was further revised as development progressed during the D-Type's competition life. Notably in 1955, larger valves were introduced, together with asymmetrical cylinder heads to accommodate them.
Elements of the body shape and many construction details were used in the Jaguar E-Type from 1961 to 1969.
Lynx Motors was founded in 1968, principally to repair and maintain specialist sports and racing cars, but quickly made their name restoring and maintaining many of the original Jaguar C-Types, D-Types and E-Types. The company soon evolved from the Jaguar restoration business to build very close replicas of Jaguars rarest and most famous sports and racing cars. Their cars would be referred to as a "tool-makers copies", and the company would introduce the Lynx C-Type, D-Type, and a road-going XKSS following shortly afterwards.
For sports and racing car enthusiasts, there is nothing more evocative than the memory of the original Jaguar D-Types roaring to victory at Le Mans. The Lynx D-Type offers discerning owners the unique opportunity to experience a part of Jaguar's rich sporting pedigree. The cars feature many enhanced Jaguar E-Type mechanical components, blended with a lightweight, yet tough all-aluminum monocoque structure resulting in an excellent power-to-weight ratio. The result is a tremendous driving experience. The Lynx D-Types can be offered options; for example, they can encompass the long nose or short nose style, single or full width screen, with or without a tail fin.
Most mechanical parts are original Jaguar parts, including the XK engine block, hand-built to Lynx racing specifications. Underneath, the fine independent rear suspension system of the D- and E-Types is retained, with inboard brakes and all. Every Lynx D-Type is meticulously hand-built to the highest standard by experienced craftsmen, and Lynx Motors has become a household name in car manufacturing.
This Stunning Lynx D Type was commissioned by Jerry Stampler, at the time the President of the UK Jaguar Club, and used in Vintage Racing there in the UK for several years. Purchased by the Seller, the car is now on its second owner and continues to run Vintage Racing Events Stateside. Finished in the Briggs Cunningham livery and featuring the Short Nose and Vestigial Fin this car looks fast standing still. It is quite fast and is very competitive on the track.
With the introduction of the Jaguar Continuation D Types in 2016, these Lynx D Types represent a tremendous value for the Enthusiast or the Vintage Race Driver. Now is the time to buy one!