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Discover what made the future: Keith Helfet, XJ-220

Keith Helfet grew up in South Africa and studied Engineering. Whilst initially not a promising academic, it wasn’t until he turned his focus towards art and design that he started to shine.

Helfet joined Jaguar in 1978 and so began a career spanning over two decades with the famous British car brand. Sir William Lyons was an admirer of Helfet’s design work and in 1993 brought the furious XJ-220 on to the scene.

The XJ-220 became the fastest production car in 1992 with a top speed of a staggering 349 km/h and was also listed on the 1 January 1990 at £290,000 – and yes, not adjusted for inflation and excluding VAT.

Helfet was also a part of the first locally designed and produced a fully electric car that unfortunately came to a halt in 2012. He now runs his own design company inconspicuously named, Helfet Design.

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