Jaguar XJR-12, chassis number J12-C-190, can stake a claim to being the iconic Big Cat.
One of only three new build XJR-12s, 190 raced at Le Mans in 1990 when Jaguar Racing took the second of its two wins in three years and was the fastest Jaguar in qualifying that year, as well playing the role of camera car.
The car was subsequently used at Daytona and Sebring in 1991 and then very nearly won the team’s final race, the 1993 Daytona 24 Hours.
The car is unusual in having run in both the Group C category of the World Sports-Prototype Championship in Europe and the IMSA Grand Touring Prototype championship in the USA. The car appeared in both Silk Cut and Bud Light liveries.
Totally up to date, with a freshly checked engine with a minimum of 12 hours’ life left, the car will be delivered with a new crack check of major components and a spare set of wheels.
Chassis number: J12-C-190
Engine: DD 555
Gearbox: 5-speed manual
Colour: Silk Cut Racing livery
Jaguar’s return to global sports car racing coincided with the high watermark of late 80s / early 90s endurance racing. Grids saw closely-fought races between Jaguar, Mercedes and Porsche as endurance racing rivalled the popularity of Formula One, with unpredictable, entertaining racing amongst first class driver line-ups.
British fans had much to be proud of too. Jaguar Racing was put together by Sir John Egan as part of the renaissance of the brand post-privatisation from British Leyland. The ultra-successful TWR team under team boss Tom Walkinshaw put together a world class team of engineers, mechanics and drivers to beat the best that Mercedes and Porsche could muster.
The team’s results were impressive and in line with the high expectations of the management and their British fans: the team won the World Sportscar Championship in 1987, 1988 and 1991, the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1988 and 1990 and the Daytona 24 Hours in 1988 and 1990 as well.
The XJR-12 was really the ultimate development of the V12-engined cars, being a logical evolution of the XJR-9 designed by Tony Southgate.
Chassis J12-C-190 was a stalwart of the Jaguar Racing team, first appearing at Le Mans 1990 (which the team won) and then subsequently at Daytona and Sebring in 1991 and finally Daytona 1993.
Highlights of the car’s racing life were as follows:
• one of only two new XJR-12s built for Le Mans 1990
• the fastest qualifying Jaguar for Le Mans (3.30.10, by Davy Jones) and the camera car during the weekend
• one of the few Jaguar Racing cars built for and run in both Group C and IMSA races; equally, one of the few cars that ran both the Silk Cut and Bud Light liveries
• star of the Big Cats’ last race (Daytona 1993), running in the lead for many laps until a broken valve spring forced retirement just 80 laps before the end of the race
Drivers and results were as follows
• 28 February 1990, Silverstone UK, driven by Andy Wallace
Le Mans 24 Hours 1990:
• car number: 4 / livery: Silk Cut
• drivers: Michel Ferté, Davy Jones, Luis Pérez-Sala, Eliseo Salazar
• grid position: 7 / race result: DNF, engine
Daytona 24 Hours 1991:
• car number: 3 / livery: Bud Light
• drivers: John Nielsen, Kenny Acheson, Eddie Cheever
• grid position: n / a – did not race after a practice accident
Sebring 12 Hours 1991:
• car number: 3 / livery: Bud Light
• drivers: John Nielsen, Davy Jones, Raul Boesel
• grid position: 5 / race result: 5
Daytona 24 Hours 1993:
• car number 2 / livery: Bud Light
• drivers: Davy Jones, Scott Goodyear, Scott Pruett
• grid position: 6 / race result: DNF, classified 10
The car was placed in the TWR Musuem after racing and then passed to a private owner, and thence to the current owner who has run her sparingly at Peter Auto events.
The car comes complete with a set of spare wheels and up to date lifing and engine data. The engine has at least 12 hours of life yet (after a recent refresh) and the usual components will be freshly crack-tested before delivery.
Unusually, the owner also wishes to include a pair of driver helmets with the car: one from John Nielsen dated 1990 (the year that he won Le Mans) and one from Davy Jones, who raced the car so often.
Group C racing, and its IMSA GTP relative, produced a golden era of endurance racing for a decade of fans. Coming at the same time as ‘Mansell Mania’, the success of Jaguar’s Big Cats at Le Mans, and international races worldwide, struck a patriotic chord that many fans still feel today.
Opportunities to buy V12-engined, Silk Cut-liveried Jaguar Group C cars are few and far between. This car has the unique distinction of a clear and successful history on both sides of the Atlantic and is presented absolutely ‘on the button’ and ready to go, from a well-known and prestigious collection.
Cost-effective to run, comfortable to drive and eligible for all the most prestigious meetings, chassis 190 is ready to roar again.