In-Motion Outtakes: Jaguar XJ220 – Saturday Night Special

Walking along with my head consumed by other things, I nearly missed this. A twin-turbo V6 500 bhp Jaguar XJ220, capable of an eponymous 220 miles per hour.

The XJ220 was an ambitious project developed by a team of Jaguar employees in their after hours, earning them the sobriquet ‘Saturday Night Club’. It was unveiled at the 1988 Birmingham Motor Show, arriving amidst a flurry of supersupercars kicked off by the Porsche 959, Ferrari 288 GTO and Honda NSX, and later joined by newcomers Bugatti EB110 and McLaren F1 (this last model probably the most complete expression of the sports car from that period, and in the opinion of this author, still yet to be surpassed).

The original concept was modified for production – the V12 replaced with a boosted V6 and the body shortened by 10 inches. Unfortunately, its arrival coincided with a global financial downturn and delivery of customer cars didn’t begin until 1991. From an initial 1400 orders, only 350 were produced.

I suspect this example is the one that resides in the Fox Collection. Given its location when photographed, it would appear to have been taken for a freeway squirt, and was in the process of coming out of the off-ramp and re-entering the freeway in the opposite direction.

It doesn’t really set my heart on fire, but I never thought I’d see one on the road.