Since its introduction in 1961, the Jaguar E type set new standards for performance, roadholding and aesthetic appeal. It was, in the truest sense of the word, a show stopper at Geneva in 1961, and it remains – along with perhaps the Mini and the VW Beetle – one of the world’s most recognised and revered automotive designs.
Introduced in 1968 in response to a combination of Series 1 design flaws and, perhaps more significantly, to increasingly stringent U.S automotive legislation, the Series 2 E type – whilst perhaps not quite the style icon of its elder sibling – was arguably a better car. Whilst the stylish head and rear lights of the Series 1 car were replaced by rather more workmanlike items, they actually did a better job. Similarly, the Series 1 brakes – always something of a weak link – were replaced with uprated units which ensured far greater stability and were far less prone to fade after sustained use.
There was an improved cooling system and new seats were fitted ensuring a more comfortable ride, especially over long distances. The interior and dashboard were also redesigned, with rocker switches replacing the classic Jaguar toggle switches which had hitherto been used. Series 2 engines lost the distinctive polished aluminium cam covers (replaced by rather unsightly black “ribbed” equivalents), but a huge improvement was made by the introduction of the all-synchromesh 4 speed gearbox, which replaced the rather ponderous “Moss” item used on Series 1 cars.
This superbly restored example is an original Left hand drive car, and has been in a well known European collection for over 30 years. It has matching numbers and is wonderfully finished in midnight blue with tan interior and mohair hood. Sitting on chrome wire wheels, it also boasts a period radio, and to find an E-Type in such a condition and specification is extremely rare indeed. Vastly underrated relative to their Series 1 counterparts, it is surely only a matter of time before values of Series 2 cars truly take off, making cars such as this undoubtedly a sound investment for the future.