Testing the E-Type Series III back in 1972, Road & Track magazine reckoned the new V12 power unit, ‘a sheer delight, by itself almost worth the price of admission. The V12 is a lovely piece of machinery, lovely to listen to and lovely to behold. The exhaust has that hurried sound characteristic of a multiple-cylinder engine where the many explosions per revolution make it sound as if it’s running faster than an engine with fewer cylinders. The idle is smooth and quiet with none of the mechanical busyness one normally experiences from the likes of a Ferrari or Lamborghini V12. And the smoothness lingers throughout the rev range.’
One consequence of the E-Type’s long process of development had been a gradual increase in weight, but a good measure of the concomitant loss of performance was restored in 1971 with the arrival of the sensational Series III V12. Weighing only 80lb more than the cast-iron-block 4.2-litre XK six that it replaced, the new all-alloy, 5.3-litre, overhead-camshaft V12 engine produced 272bhp, an output good enough for a top speed well in excess of 140mph. Further good news was that the 0-100mph time of around 16 seconds made the V12 the fastest-accelerating E-Type ever.
Other mechanical changes beneath the Series III’s more aggressive looking exterior included ventilated front disc brakes, anti-dive front suspension, Lucas transistorised ignition, and Adwest power-assisted steering, while automatic transmission was one of the more popular options on what was now more of a luxury Grand Tourer than out-and-out sports car. Flared wheelarches, a deeper radiator air intake complete with grille, and a four-pipe exhaust system distinguished the Series III from its six-cylinder forbears, plus, of course, that all-important ‘V12’ boot badge. The interior though, remained traditional Jaguar. Built in two-seat roadster and ‘2+2’ coupé versions, both of which used the long-wheelbase floor pan introduced on the Series II ‘2+2’, the Series III E-Type continued the Jaguar tradition of offering a level of performance and luxury unrivalled at the price.
Manufactured in October 1973, this Series III E-Type roadster has covered an unbelievably low 2,500 miles from new- having been cared for and caressed by its current custodian since 1990. At this time the car was restored to an exceptional standard ( costing in excess of 50,000 GBP then!) . It comes with a large history file and a total breakdown with the restoration along with a variety of bills, MoT’s and receipts to substantiate the mileage.
Finished in iconic primrose, over chocolate bean interior this has to be one of the lowest mileage V12 roadsters to be offered on the open market.