Back in the day, the Jaguar C-Type succeeded at Le Mans twice – one time with an injured and drunken Duncan Hamilton manning the wheel. But the Jaguar D-Type, with its dolphin fin, managed the feat three times.
Chassis XKD 501 has been owned in the past by Scottish motor racing team Ecurie Ecosse – being the one that was crowned as the overall winner during the 1956 edition of the world’s greatest endurance race. It was driven back then by Ron Flockhart and Ninian Sanderson. Heading to auction at RM Sotheby’s Monterey event, the XKD 501 is the only Le Mans-winning C- or D-Type that has retained its original condition – so you might be guessing right it’s going to cost more than an arm and leg. As such, there isn’t even an estimate for the pristine retro racer – but since it’s also the first team-series production D-Type as designated by its chassis number we’re pretty much warranting a record price.
For example, back in 2014, the same auction house took home $4,996,248 for chassis XKD 520 – which has nothing of the motorsport pedigree of XKD 501. Speaking off, the model not only won the race but it did it with seven laps ahead of a Ferrari 625 LM Spider and also in front of Stirling Moss in his Aston Martin DB3S. In total, it covered 2,507.19 miles (4,034.93 km) at an average speed of 104.47 mph (168.12 km/h) – and this was back in 1956.