XK140 DHC hood colour

Hi All,
I have recently purchased a 1956 (late 1955 manufactured) XK140 DHC which is in largely original condition and my intention is to keep as much of that originality as possible whilst using and enjoying it. The age old dream!

One issue I face is the hood (believed to be original) is like a crisp so will need replacement (or at least a new outer fabric) if I’m to enjoy top-down summer motoring.

So far not a problem but the existing external colour looks like a light sand whereas the heritage certificate states it was originally gunmetal. I’m not sure how accurate the factory records were and can’t find any photographs or examples of the gunmetal fabric to compare.
Has anyone come across this before or could you please help shed some light on the topic?

Appreciate your feedback,

Ian, welcome to the forum. According to Philip Porter’s 2012 edition of “Original Jaguar XK”, XK140 DHC hoods were supplied in six colors: Black, Blue, Fawn, French Grey, Gunmetal, and Sand. Typically, the Heritage Certificates are correct about original colors.

It’s possible the hood was replaced in the past with another color. Gunmetal was a medium gray color, and it may not have been available then. (It may be a hard color to source even today.)

Look for clues as to whether your car has a replacement hood. Originally, it would have had full chrome pin beading. The pin beading was tacked in above the windshield, above the rear window, across the back below the rear window, then curving up over the side windows. Additionally, the plastic rear window would have zipped up the sides and across the top allowing it to be opened.

Hi Mike, thanks for your reply and helpful feedback. All the trim features you mentioned are present and the rear screen has 2 side zips that meet at the top. What doesn’t help is that at some point the hood has been painted in a what looks like a coloured sealer. I’ve checked behind the seams as best I can and would still describe the colour as beige/sand, albeit quite grubby looking!

You may well be right in saying gunmetal hood fabric might be scarce but would be great if I knew what it should look like and try to find the nearest match available.
I really was expecting to find some online library photographs but so far have drawn a blank and hoped someone may have a car with the correct colour hood or possibly an old photograph??

Apologies it’s not the most technical of topics as a first post but would be great if I could learn enough to be confident I’m doing the right thing to keep the car looking as it should.

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