Let’s Try To Figure Out the Jaguar XJ220’s Best Angle
We got a fresh photoset of one of the prettiest cars of the '90s here for you.
The Jaguar XJ220 is a vehicle that few will ever see in real life, but almost every car enthusiast can recognize. That’s probably because toy companies and poster printers went HAM (rightfully) sharing images of this majestic machine when it was new in the early ’90s. Speaking of images, we’ve got a new batch of great XJ220 shots here and that’s all the excuse I needed to bring this car up.
- Car: 1993 Jaguar XJ220
- Location: Dogmersfield, Hampshire, United Kingdom
- Photog: Unknown (images owned by Collecting Cars, shared with permission)
- Camera: Unknown
This particular car is actually up for auction on a site called Collecting Cars — that’s how we got a fresh high-rez photo album to share. So if you see this post before Sunday, October 24 and you’ve got [checks listing] $340,000 to throw down (as of this writing) maybe this is your next car?
For the rest of us, we can just enjoy the album and try to answer what the best angle on this car really is. At first, I was all about the silhouette. But I really like the head-on front perspective, too. And then, oh man, the rear three quarter… the XJ220 just keeps getting prettier the more my eyes eat it up. What say you?
The basic posted specs on the XJ220 were: 3,240 pounds of curb weight, 542 bhp and 476 lb-ft of torque from a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6, and a pretty long reign as “the world’s fastest production car” through the mid-’90s. The car apparently hit 217.1 mph on Italy’s Nardo Ring with its emissions equipment stripped, and 212 mph with the cat converters in place. The record runs had Formula 1 driver Martin Brundle behind the wheel. Years later, Brundle revisited the car for a Fifth Gear TV segment that’s now on YouTube, check it out for some first-person perspective on this interesting machine.
As impressive as the car is in a performance setting, even if it fell a hair short of the 220 mph top speed promised by the XJ220’s name, I think the design is really what cemented its status as an all-time legendary vehicle. For that, we can largely thank Keith Helfet — the man credited with creating the XJ220’s look. He did an interview with Petrolicious in 2017, which contains some cool insights on the car’s creation:
“‘I had to make the nose shorter to bring it back into proportion,’ he recalls, explaining that the original concept was considerably longer. Taking inspiration from the one-car production run of the 1966 XJ13, Jaguar’s other mid-engined road car, almost all of the XJ220’s lines were initially explored through clay sculpting, rather than being ‘penciled’ in order to get a true feel for an elegant proportion in a tactile way that is lost on paper and certainly in programs.”
The car in these photographs, number 29 of the 285 XJ220s built, is painted LeMans Blue with a Smoke Grey interior. The auction listing, if you want to bid (ha!) or just explore a few more photos of the thing, is on Collecting Cars.