Jaguar D-Type Review
Jaguar D type is one of the sport car produced by Jaguar cars Ltd. The car shares several components such as basic Straight 6XK engine, 3.4 liters and 3.8 liters with the C-Type. However, the car is different from the C-Type because of its monocoque construction which brings aviation techniques in the motor industry the aerodynamic efficiency techniques employed makes it one of the most efficient cars on the road.
History and Racing Performance
The history of D-Type can be traced back to the 1954, 24 hours of Le Mans race where fuel starvation occasioned by fuel filters problems forced the car be stopped several times to have the filters replaced . This made it difficult for the car finish in a top position and allowed Ferrari to be declared the champion of that event.
Since 1955, the car has undergone a number of modifications including upgrading the engine with large valves while its bodywork has been modified to enhance its efficiency. Its aerodynamic superiority is evident in the maximum speed the car is capable of. The car is capable of 172.8mph. At the 1955 Le Mans series, the competition was between Mercedes Benz 300 SLR s and Mike Hawthorn’s D type. An accident involving one of the Mercedes cars where a driver and 80 spectators died made Mercedes to withdraw from the championship. This gave Jaguar D-type an opportunity of winning the race.
In 1956, the D-Type won the race using the small Edinburgh based team. In 1957, the D-Types won most of the top positions in the Le Mans with 5 cars taking the top 5 out of 6 places. The new rules in Le Mans races which were enacted in 1958 limited the size of the engine to 3 liters brought the dominance of D-type to an end. Jaguar developed a 3 liters engine which was used in the 1958, 1959 and 1960. The engine was unreliable and lacked the power to compete effectively.
The structural design of the D-type jaguar is revolutionary and utilizes the aeronautical techniques and technology. The car has a cockpit section constructed using aluminum alloy. The small cross section guarantees torsional rigidity while the elliptical shape reduces the car drag. The front bulkhead has an aluminum tubing sub frame which a final drive with a suspension has amounted to the rear bulk head. The car has a tail as the carrier of fuel. This is a practice that is common in the aviation industry. The aerodynamic body work the car boasts of is the work of Malcolm Sayer who gathered ideas at Bristol Aero plane Company. He imported the ideas to the D –type Jaguar but insisted on a reduced frontal area to increase the cars efficiency. It resulted in to a bulging front which enabled the car to move at a very high speed.
The car shares a number of features with the outgoing C-type they both have a rear suspension and disc brakes. It has a brand new lubrication system with a revised engine developed way back in the 1955 and which made utilized large valves.