Jaguar E-Type XKE Serie 1

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Keywords: jaguar e-type, e-type, jag etype, e-type jaguars, eagle e-type, etypes,e-type jaguar uk, eagle e-type jaguar, eagle speedster, eagle low drag gt
Description: Introduced to a stunned world in March 1961 at the Geneva motor show, The E-Type racing heritage was clear.

The Series 1 3.8-litre cars used the triple SU carburetted 6-cylinder engine from the Jaguar XK150S and all 3.8 models used the Moss ‘non-synchro first’ gearbox throughout.

All E-Types featured fully independent suspension and four- wheel servo-assisted disc brakes. Jaguar was one of the first car manufacturers to equip cars with disc brakes as standard, developed from the Le Mans- winning Jaguar C and D-Types.

The Series 1 can be easily recognised by glass-covered headlights (up to mid- 1967), small ‘mouth’ opening at the front, side lights and tail lights positioned above the bumpers, and exhaust tips under the number plate in the rear. The first 92 right-hand-drive and 386 left-hand-drive roadsters featured the outside bonnet locks, but by August these had been superseded by internally- positioned bonnet locks.

The initial separate bonnet louvres remained until around the end of 1961. By RHD Roadster chassis No. 358 and LHD No. 582, footwells were added to the previously flat floorpans, and the first delivery date was in January 1962.

Before the end of that year a recessed panel was added behind the seats and these two modifications significantly improved foot and leg room.

The famed aluminium dashboard was discontinued in September 1963 from RHD Roadster Chassis No. 752 and LHD Chassis No. 4803. Production of the 3.8-litre model ended on 10 August 1964 and was replaced by the new 4.2-litre model.

Jaguar built 12 special E-Types for competition use in 1963, plus three further unused chassis ‘tub’ units.

They incorporated a body made entirely of aluminium instead of steel, and the engine featured a bespoke aluminium dry-sumped cylinder block and ‘wide angle’ cylinder head fed by the state-of-the-art Lucas mechanical fuel injection system. Some of these cars also used a 5-speed ZF gearbox. Today, the examples racing in historic events show they would have been a match for the legendary Ferrari 250 GTO, and Briggs Cunningham ran a team of three at the 1963 Le Mans 24- Hour race.

Lightweight No. 4 (86 PJ) is the most correct and original of the survivors and was entrusted to Eagle for a sympathetic restoration and return to the original exterior colour. Many lightweight style cars have been built up around an original E-Type, and Eagle built one such car around an all-aluminium body and engine. ‘26 PJ’ has proved to be extremely competitive on the current historic race scene.

In 1962 Malcolm Sayer, the aerodynamics expert responsible for the original E-Type design, built a Coupe model for use in international GT racing around a lightweight steel monocoque body. The project was sold to ‘privateer’ racer Dick Protheroe in mid 1963 and used with great success. He transferred his registration number ‘CUT 7’ to this car and this is how it’s still recognised today.

Two of the original 12 lightweights were also modified with a low drag Coupe body. No.5 is the most well known, the Lindner Nocker car registered ‘4868 WK’ and raced at the 1964 Le Mans 24-Hour. No.6 carried an even more dramatic low drag body conversion with a longer nose and is recognised as ‘49 FXN’.

The original ‘Low Drag’ models were the inspiration for our own Eagle GT Coupe which combines the dramatic shape with our ethos of building a very comfortable, safe and capable road car designed to cross continents with ease.

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