Replicas of C-type, D and E-types

It strikes me as odd that there is no forum here dedicated to replicas of the C, D or even the E-type models. I’ve been a serial replica owner, and currently am, I suppose, on my last at my age. It’s a 1988 Lynx XKSS, but I have owned two Lynx D-types, built a 1952 Le Mans C-type and for years wrote a monthly column for the JDC in the UK. I know there is interest in replicas in the USA because one manufacturer of replicas sells all his cars to the States, but there seems to be no mention on this site. I have no wish to offend, but are they a taboo subject here?

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beauty, i have seen and heard at donnington inteersteing question/ jj

Tony,

I have no problems with a good replica, as long as it is respected as that. That XKSS looks absolutely fantastic.

I feel that if someone faithfully builds a replica from scratch it can stand alone as a thing of beauty and a testament of some serious engineering skill.

More photos please.

Matt

If we start at the beginning, this is the first replica I bought over 20 years ago, a rather rare Lynx short nose D-type. Lynx built a number of long nose cars because that is what everyone wanted it seems, but few short nose. This is me at Goodwood having a good time:-

Then I got really bitten by the bug and added this to the stable:-

So I now had two:-

One long and one short nose. truly beautiful cars in hand-rolled alloy.

The years roll by and I am a happy chappy, or was until I discovered why Jaguar had won Le Mans in 1951, and 1953 but not 1952. Little known in Jaguar annals, they had completely changed the shape of the C-type for more top speed on the Mulsanne straight. Three cars were built, none finished, and they were destroyed by Jaguar. So that was the end of that. Well, it was, until the bug bit me again, and the long nose was sold to build the missing link:-

This really was a labour of love, taking me five years of research before we could start work on the build. it was no pastiche, but was a full-in replica, and as such was invited twice to the Goodwood Revival and the Festival of Speed.

This was a parade lap, and on my left was Sir Jackie Stewart. The car was also driven by Sir Stirling Moss:-

So now I had a C & a D, but I sold the C because it merited more than I could give it and needed to be seen, and in the end had the short nose converted into the XKSS you see at the beginning of this thread

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Not taboo at all, there’s just never been any call to create a category for replicas. We have a few categories already that have very little traffic, but were very requested at the time. A category with little traffic never really flies. If there is enough interest in a category for replicas, we’ll certainly take that into consideration.

Personally, I’d love to have a 1953 C-type replica, as my grandfather was a mechanic for Jaguar at Le Mans that year. Unless kits became a lot cheaper though, or me a lot wealthier, that won’t happen!

Great Photos Tony…I only got into replicas 3 years ago when i was looking for a new project …once i saw the C type i was hooked but was amazed at the prices…always thinking that replicas or “Kit Cars” that many call them were cheap…how untrue is that with the best builds selling for high prices…Fortunatly i found Realm engineering at the cheaper end of the replica market who are manufactureing GRP bodies this gave me a way in to build what 99% of car folk would just see as a beautiful C type…The 1% being able to spot that its a Realm from a distance…this is a friends recently completed RealmIMG-2302

Ok All…opening up to the world here…if your into Replica Jaguars there is a forum…only started last year and just trying to add content so was kept quiet till there was a base of info…The forum Replijag.com was started by a friend and based in the Neatherlands…sections to cover most of the common Jaguar Replicas and a section dedicated to Realm self builders…new sections can be added for you favorite…please feel free to register and join in…it will be a “no nonsense” type of forum with the same type of rules as Jag Lovers and the UK E type forum…there may be a slight delay as you register becaus admin will have to authorise you…Steve

Just a little input from me, with regard to the most widely-replicated car in the world - the AC Cobra (with a little input from Shelby). Some top-end replicas here in the UK are truer to the original design and contain more parts from original cars than some of the originals. It’s a very murky area, and when it comes to Goodwood etc., it’s possibly best not to look tooooo closely…

These days there is some real engineering craftsmanship and passion to be seen in replicas. There are replicas, then there are replicas.

I mentioned it here in Jaglovers because for the most part it seems to be USA-based. There has been for many years a section of the Jaguar Drivers Club for replicas, and I was the monthly correspondent for years. it is full of knowledgeable people. May I mention, based on the post above, that Realm under Adrian Cocking have sold on the rights to their XKSS models to AK Sportscars. However, Realm still sell the kits for the C & D-type. You can find the JDC site here:-

Moreover - but with a caveat that you will need deep pockets - the new Lynx are up and running in Coventry again. As soon as Covid is over I shall be going and take some photos. Their supreme workmanship can be seen here:-

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Finally, do you consider the new “continuation” Jaguar lightweight E-type, D-type and XKSS cars to be “real” or “replicas”? I fall definitely into the latter category, having criticized them all along. These are supposed to be tool room copies of the real thing, but they are negative earth and have electronic rev-counters as one example of their idiocy. Now the very best of C-type replicas is always said to be one of the dozen made by Peter Jay in 1982, and they are much sought after. To see how the market values the continuation Jaguars there is a bankruptcy sale at Elkhart Lake in October, and one each of the D, E, and XKSS are being sold with no reserve. They cost about £1.4 million new. Will they fly, or will they bomb? I think they’ll fly, purely because they have been sold - if not actually built - by Jaguar and carry the correct chassis numbers. As I have often said, each car cost £700,000 to build and the chassis plate cost the extra £700,000. The last Peter Jay C-type fetched around £280,000 if I recall correctly. Anyway, you can follow the sale here:-

Hi Tony:

As a member of the JDC for many years I followed both you and your cars, predominantly through the period when Martin Payne was editor of the E-type Register. I struck up a correspondence with Martin that lasted for some 13 years until his sad passing in 2009 and recall seeing many photos of “Madam CYN” and others at Stable Yard. Indeed, the “Jaguar Driver” published my eulogy to him following his death.

Your example of the 1952 Le Mans C-type was outstanding, albeit not my favourite representative of the type. It was ostensibly a result of Stirling Moss making a frantic representation to Lyons regarding the 300SLs speed that resulted in the restyling of the bodywork and, as I recall, they recognized afterwards that the average speed of the regular car would have been sufficient for victory.

I have no problem with replicas providing, as has been mentioned, they are identified as such. It is interesting that when asked if he would accept the “continuation” Lightweight E-types at Goodwood, Lord March’s response was an emphatic, “No!” Also, there was a quite heated back and forth when the Lancia D50 replica came on the scene some years ago about it’s inclusion in vintage racing. I recall being down at Watkins Glen some years ago when, while wandering through the paddock, we came across a C-type. The bonnet was up and the car was surrounded by a sizable crowd with much speculation was being made as to the car’s authenticity, peering at the top of the RF suspension upright I was able to deduce that it was not the real thing. It turned out to be a Tempero, a very impressive replica indeed in my opinion. Unfortunately, as both you and Nick mentioned above, even the replicas these days demand deep pockets. I have often argued that the only thing I would give up my XK120 for would be a replica, ideally short-nosed, D-type, but that too is now sadly a distant dream.

Thanks for your input and photos, Tony.

Best.

Chris (Martin’s Mon Ami Mate).

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Goodwood and the replicas; now therein lies a story. For many years Lord March refused to accept replicas, but with the value of cars climbing to stratospheric levels he has had no choice but to change his tune. When I took the C-type to Goodwood in 2009 there were two D50 replicas and a shark nose Ferrari too, as well as my C-type. But his reasoning in this was sound; at that time he had taken the decision to allow “proper” replicas which, like mine, were tool room copies with FIA papers. His reasoning was that he would accept replicas of cars that no longer existed to please the spectators. A bold and sage decision in my opinion. However, six years ago saw the 60th anniversary of the D-type, and a race was programmed for the Revival; except that people wouldn’t risk their precious cars. So, giving but two examples, XKD 505 and 506 were allowed to race, and worse than that Ben Eastick’s replica which he has campaigned for many a year. It is rumoured that of the 37 Ferrari 250 GTO’s made, 47 exist. How? Because people are having duplicates made to race to preserve the original. In this I would of course exclude Nick Mason, who has owned his GTO for nearly forty years and continually campaigned it, as he has all of thr 10/10th cars. So now we have to accept that the only way we are going to see serious classic racing is by watching the replicas, which in themselves are now far removed from the originals. The Crosthwaite and Gardner new alloy block lightweight engines can produce 75bhp more than the originals, the suspension is far removed, and so on. My Lynx XKSS (I have to be careful here because I have oft been criticized for just saying “my XKSS”) puts out 325 bhp and 400 lb/ft of torque, far removes from what Steve McQueen drove in the day.

It is sad to see that Lord March has now been reduced to putting out the begging bowl, saying that if the Festival and the Revival are to continue we need to chip in. I was a member of the original Goodwood Supporters’ Club, and now he has relaunched the name and is asking for donations. I can understand, because to put on the best classic racing show must cost far more than the revenues of the Goodwood estate can support. No horse racing this year, no motor racing - nothing. In the end we have to be thankful for small mercies

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I forgot to say that still have the E-type 38 years on. After 125,000 miles she had a second rebuild in 2014 and was returned to her original 1961 colours. Sadly, you must know I am sure that Petronel died in October 2016.

Hi Tony,

Wonderful pictures! Thank you for raising this issue. Like Nick said, it’s not taboo at all, but no one has asked for it before.

We’re both all for it, and think it would be a great addition to Jag-lovers. I’ll add the new category right away.

May I use one of your pictures of the “missing link” as the category header? It’ll be displayed in the main list of categories on the forum home page, as well as at the top of the category topic list.

Regards,
Gunnar
(Admin)

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Please feel welcome to use any of the pictures you wish. Replicas today are a very important part of the subculture of classic cars. Some deride them, but as I always signed off my articles “living the dream”.

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Thanks! Replicas category coming up!

Tony:

The E-type looks great. On my first trip back to England in some 30+ years my wife and I were lucky enough to meet up with Petronel who, along with John Burton, met us at the pub where we were staying. The following day we visited her at Stable Yard and enjoyed a good chat and cup of tea. She had become Martin’s correspondent when he could no longer manage to write to me and we maintained an email connection following his death. She also kept us posted on her travails and when the emails stopped we feared the worst. An email to John confirmed things. My biggest regret was never having the opportunity to meet Martin in person.

Chris.

And the Replicas category is ready! To kick things off, I’m moving this entire topic (thread) over to the new category. See you there!

There was a programme on one of the UK terrestrial channels a few years back about the building of, I think it was, replica E-types, possibly lightweights, I don’t know. Someone interviewed Lord March in the paddock and asked if he would accept them to race at Goodwood. There was a pause, and with a wry grin he said that Goodwood didn’t accept replicas. He was standing in front of a row of Cobras that I know very well, all of them post-2000…

Following the comment above about negative earth replicas with electronic rev counters, it’s worth noting that AC Cars (such as it exists these days) has had a few goes at making ‘continuation’ cars, or replicas, in recent years, including production runs of ‘MkII’ cars, i.e. copies of the later transverse leaf spring road cars. Not one of these has a cable drive tachometer, or is positive earth. They’re not subtle about it, either - one of their ‘modern’ Cobras is all-electric. According to the sales blurb, they have achieved something truly remarkable - they are to make the first-ever electric version of a vehicle which accelerates more slowly than its petrol forebear. 0-60 in 6.7 seconds? The '63 petrol version could do it in 5.6…

Lovely site and Frank Ludgate must be a replica? Surely nobody gets to look and sound so sharp at 80 without a total rebuild?

One fairly serious moan though - not so much because of its use by Lynx but because it will encourage the torrent of misdescription and mendacity by lesser players…

The Lynx D is NOT “faithfully recreated as a toolroom copy” by any stretch of the imagination. It never was. You regularly see the toolroom copy description applied to Realms and even Triumph-based Le Mans kits by over-eager and under-scrupulous auctioneers, but to see Lynx repeat the error is a pity. I have a copy of one of the earliest road tests wherein the company was (correctly) quoted to the effect that no part made by Lynx was exactly the same as the corresponding D component.

A toolroom copy D or XKSS is available from several sources (from whom I have bought many of the same parts Jaguar buy) but nothing made by any incarnation of the wonderful Lynx designers survives a two second glance under the bonnet.

Not having been allowed to see under the bonnet at Jaguar Classic, I didn’t know the continuation cars were negative earth (mine is +ve) but I did know they had stepper-motor tachs (mine is not merely cable-driven but correct chronometric).

I think Adrian Cocking’s Realms are superb value and I loved my short and long noses. For the undecided, however, the Realm C is inherently more correct and practical, because the originals were tubular-framed too, and that means the interior can look correct as well as the engine compartment, unlike his other kits with the big tunnel