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This hero drives his 1991 Jaguar XJR-15 on the street

Jeff Glucker January 23, 2018 Cars You Should Know, Hoonivercinema 19 Comments

At the tail-end of the 1980s, Tom Walkinshaw was dreaming up ways in which he could go to Le Mans and claim victory. He wanted to do so with his Jaguar Sport partners, and he wanted to do so in a Jaguar vehicle. In 1988, the Jaguar XJR-9 was born and it set out to slap other Group C racing teams right across their faces.

In its inaugural season, the XJR-9 took its gorgeous Silk Cut livery and won six out of the 11 races of the World Sports Prototype Championship series. These were races won at places like Monza, Silverstone, Fuji, and Jarama. Most importantly though, this includes a victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Using the XJR-9 as a sort of mold, Tom Walkinshaw Racing produced a road version which was called the XJR-15. The cockpit was made a bit wider and the roof was raised up so normal wealthy humans could sit inside in relative comfort compared to the race car. Still, there sits a 6.0-liter V12 engine out back, which is good for 450 horsepower. And it’s all metered out to the rear wheels by way of an unsynchronized six-speed manual gearbox.

The mighty XJ220 came later and it broke on through the 200 mile-per-hour mark. But the XJR-15 before it was the first road car to wear a full carbon-fiber body. With its V12 howling, it would rip from a stop to 60 miles per hour in under four seconds and could continue on to a top speed of just over 190 miles per hour. This was in 1991, mind you.

Today, there’s one on the road owned by a man named Jasbir Dhillon. He drives it. He takes it to read the morning paper, and he takes it to get some coffee. The wonderful Mr Dhillon drives his road-legal race car on the streets around Nashville, and he does so with a smile on his face.

This man is a hero.