Sixty years ago the Daily Express sponsored the inaugural production car race at the new Silverstone Circuit, which allowed high-powered cars produced for the road to be used on the race track with just a few modifications. The winning car was the iconic Jaguar XK120, launched in 1948 and costing £998. 00! Three of the first cars off the Foleshill, Coventry production line in 1949 went straight up to Silverstone to race, and left the rest of the field standing. At this year’s Silverstone Classic, Jaguar’s original victory is being celebrated in the Daily Express Trophy for Production Jaguar cars. The grid will include pre-1960s XK120, XK140, XK150, MK 1 and Mk 7 Jaguar models. 'Welcoming Jaguar as the Silverstone Classic’s featured marque, sixty years on from the XK120’s original victory, is a magnificent celebration of British engineering and motorsport,' says Ken Prichard Jones, director of Racing at Silverstone Limited. “Many of the Jaguars on the grid have extraordinary racing and ownership pedigrees, and we look forward to on-track action that’s every bit as competitive and exciting as when Jaguar scored victory sixty years ago. 'The Silverstone Classic is all about encouraging investment in the future of automotive engineering by celebrating the past. What could be more fitting this year than a Jaguar feature race, which has attracted more than 40 historic Jaguars to the Silverstone Classic grid?' The Jaguar XK120 that won the first Daily Express International Sports Car Race in 1949 was powered by a six cylinder, XK engine unit that produced 160 bhp and topped 120mph, hence its Jaguar XK120 moniker. This was not only the first pure-bred Jaguar engine: it was the world’s first mass-production engine with twin camshafts and hemispherical combustion chambers. So successful was the XK engine unit that it was used in the iconic C-, D- and E-type cars and continued to power Jaguars into the 1980s. The winning and second placed Jaguar XK120s in 1949 were piloted by Leslie Johnson and Peter Walker respectively.