Science vs Power

First and foremost Enzo Ferrari believed that his cars should be both powerful and beautiful. But the power of the 4.4 litre straight 6 beneath the bonnet of the 121 LM was not enough to stave off the technical advances of Mercedes and Jaguar during 1955. Jaguar’s approach was in stark contrast to that of Ferrari. The engineers who created the ‘D’ Type maximized the potential of the production-based XK engine by clothing it in groundbreaking aerodynamic bodywork designed by Malcolm Sayer. That the ‘D’ was also one of the most beautiful sport racing cars of all time was largely incidental . During the early laps of the 1955 Le Mans 24 Hours, the 121 LM of Eugenio Castellotti is chased by Mike Hawthorn’s D Type during their stirring battle for the lead. Castellotti will retire while the Jaguar took the first of 3 consecutive wins at Le Mans for the D Type.


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