First seen during the 1960s, the Jaguar V12 engine was used in some truly great competition cars. Today we have taken a look at three of these, all which are the first of their kind. The most recent of the trio is the first XJR-12 built by Tom Walkinshaw Racing ahead of the 1990 season. It was raced at Le Mans that year and subsequently was also campaigned in North America. Retained by TWR until 2003, chassis 190 has been raced in historic events since. At the recent Estoril Classics, the current custodian raced the car for the first time and immediately scored two Group C wins.
Before TWR built the V12-engined Le Mans winning Jaguars, the British team built and raced the similarly engined XJ-S competition cars. Featured today is the very first, aptly numbered TWR 001. It was raced by Walkinshaw himself and Chuck Nicholson in the 1982 European Touring Car Championship to four wins. Hidden in plain sight, the car was later sold by the Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust as a show car but it was later discovered that it was actually the original TWR 001.
That same year, Bob Tullius and his Group 44 team debuted the Jaguar XJR-5 that was built for the IMSA GTP class. Successful in its own right, the V12-engined machine also planted the seed of what would become Jaguar's successful return to sports car racing. Featured today is XJR-5/001, which was raced by Tullius himself during the 1982 season with a second place finish as the best result. Now in Dutch hands, it was recently demonstrated at a variety of events.

Enjoy the links:

1990 Jaguar XJR-12 (J12-C-190)

1982 Jaguar XJ-S TWR Group A (TWR 001)

1982 Jaguar XJR-5 (XJR-5/001)