Jay Leno recently released an episode of Jay Leno’s Garage featuring the 1938 Hispano-Suiza Dubonnet Xenia. It’s a special episode for a number of reasons. First and foremost, this is the only version of the Hispano-Suiza Dubonnet Xenia ever built. Secondly, that first fact makes it one of the most valuable automobiles in the world. Thirdly, just look at it!
The Hispano-Suiza Dubonnet Xenia was built to demonstrate inventor, Andre Dubonnet’s independent suspension system. The system was a success, featuring in Alfa Romeo, GM, Fiat, and Delahaye models. However, what made this vehicle truely special was the styling. The bodywork was constructed by Jaques Saoutchik, it remains unique to this day. The design itself was originally penned by Jean Andreau. It channels aircraft features into a teardrop shape with a hint of art-deco about it. One of the more unusual features is the parallel-opening doors.
The Xenia sits on a modified Hispano-Suiza H6B chassis. It features a 7983 cc aluminium inline six-cylinder engine complete with 160bhp. The transmission is a four-speed manual. Currently, the car is on display at Mullin Automotive Museum alongside some of the most expensive machinery in the world. We were lucky enough to get an up-close look at it when we it was at Goodwood Festival of Speed a few years ago, not nearly as lucky as Jay though. He got to drive it!