'We claimed 120 mph (for the XK 120), a speed unheard of for a production car in those days' - William Heynes, Chief Engineer, Jaguar Cars. When Jaguar resumed car production in 1945, it dropped its pre-war sports car line to concentrate on saloon manufacture. But at the 1948 Motor Show the firm astonished the public by announcing a new two-seater roadster, the 'XK120' name reflecting its top speed. The XK120 heralded the arrival of Jaguar's famous 3.4-litre twin overhead camshaft XK engine, intended for the Mark VII saloon, then two years away. Its chassis was essentially a shortened version of the simultaneously announced Mark V saloon, with torsion bar independent suspension. The XK120's comfort and roadholding set new standards for British sports cars and, of all the XK series cars, its name alone reflected its top speed. In May 1949, on the Jabbeke to Aeltre autoroute, an example with its hood and side screen in place recorded a speed of 126mph and no less than 132mph with the hood and windscreen detached and an under-tray fitted. The car was in almost instant demand and it caught Jaguar by surprise. The first 240 examples retained coachbuilt aluminium bodies before Pressed Steel hulls took over. The open two-seater model was joined by a fixed-head coupé version in 1951 and a drophead coupé followed in 1953. The 120 lasted until 1954 before making way for its XK140 successor. It was to prove the most popular of the series, with 12,078 examples built, of which 1,175 were right-hand drive roadsters like that offered here. Purchased by current vendor in 1968, the XK was restored in the late 1980s/early 1990s (see restorer's letter on file) and currently displays a total of 20,295 miles on the odometer. Repainted in green, 'EBN 514' boasts a new hood, a new interior and a stainless steel exhaust system. The car also incorporates various modifications including faired-in front sidelights/indicators, rear lights cut into the wings, a leather bonnet strap, MWS wire wheels and electric opening of the doors, boot and spare wheel tray. Described by the private vendor as in generally very good condition, this early XK120 is offered with sundry restoration invoices, MoT to March 2012 and Swansea V5 document. It is expected that further information concerning its history will be available by time of sale.