Introduced in 3.8-litre form in 1961, the Jaguar E-Type caused a sensation when it appeared, with instantly classic lines and 150mph top speed. Its design owed much to that of the racing D-Type: a monocoque tub forming the main structure while a tubular spaceframe extended forwards to support the engine. The latter was the 3.8-litre, triple-carburettor, ‘S’ unit first offered as an option on the XK150. An optimistic 265bhp was claimed, but whatever the installed horsepower, the E-Type’s performance did not disappoint; firstly, because it weighed around 500lb (227kg) less than the XK150 and secondly because aerodynamicist Malcolm Sayer used experience gained with the D-Type to create one of the most elegant and efficient shapes ever to grace a motor car.
This matching-numbers ‘Series 1’ E-Type roadster was delivered new to the USA in June 1963 and sold via Jaguar Cars, New York to its first owner, one E C Reicholderfer. The accompanying Jaguar Heritage Trust certificate records the original exterior finish as Opalescent Golden Sand – a rare colour – with Tan interior and Sand hood.
While in the USA the E-Type benefited from extensive refurbishment, being treated to a bodywork restoration at MAACO (1990-94); new leather, carpets and Hardura trim from G W Bartlett (1990); new windscreen (1991); new body and trim seals from XKs Unlimited (1991); and re-plated brightwork by Classic Chrome (1992). More recently, in June 2012, the car had the exhaust replaced in the USA and underwent full re-commissioning, the engine, drive train, paint, trim, electrics, suspension and steering all receiving attention. There is a detailed 8-page printout of a $20,000 bill in the extensive file of US history, and the car also comes with handbooks, a UK V5C registration document and an MoT certificate valid until February 2017. Running well, it represents a wonderful opportunity to acquire one of these iconic British sports cars finished in a particularly rare and highly desirable original colour scheme.