Jaguar unveils new E-type at Earls Court Motor Show! Crowds flock in to see new racing Lightweight! It’s the show star of 1963!
Except, of course, it is very much 2014 and we are at the heart of the Goodwood Revival…
Apart from that it’s all true, as visitors to the re-created motor show exhibition have been finding all weekend.
The car is of course the E-type Lightweight of which Jaguar has confirmed it will make just six more, using continuation chassis numbers, over the next 12 months.
The car on show is chassis number zero, a hand built prototype which has so far been seen in the flesh only at Pebble Beach. Making this very much a true ‘Earls Court’ show debut!
Manning the stand is Kev Riches, a Jaguar man of 40 years – and a Series I E-type owner since 1982 – who also happens to be Jaguar’s top man for re-created classics with the historic arm of the firm’s new Special Vehicles operation. Kev knows every rivet of the car.
Echoing what it is that visitors to the stand want to know first, we put together 12 questions for Kev to answer…
Is it a genuine E-type?
That’s the first question I am always asked. To which my answer is absolutely yes. This first prototype is a re-creation of 1963 E-type Lightweight number 11, the six to follow will all be made using tooling made from scanning the prototype. The first panels are coming out of the tooling now. The six cars will use the six remaining original chassis numbers that Jaguar took out in 1963 but never used. The car will be assembled in Browns Lane by Jaguars workers.
How much is it?
All we are saying is north of a million.
Can I buy one?
No, all six have been sold.
Will it be eligible for historic racing?
We are talking to the FIA about that now. The car meets all Clause 12 classifications and we believe it will be eligible for just about everything.
When will be see one racing in the Goodwood Revival?
I would love to say next year but I can’t say that will definitely happen.
Has the car been brought up to modern-day standards in any way?
Nothing at all. It is actually a 1963 time warp car. It is as if it’s been taken straight from 1963 into 2014.
How does it drive?
Brilliant, but nothing like a modern car of course. It’s very quick and agile, with good steering. It has 340bhp and it weighs a tonne. The engine is 3.8 wide angle head straight six, Lucas PI fuel injection, though Weber carbs are available if an owners prefers. Both PI and carbs were available on the Lightweight in period.
What colours will the six cars be?
White, blue, racing green, red, classic silver and grey.
What are your top six sexy details on the car?
The Advell rivets – same as on a Spitfire. The wheel spinners, from the D-type. The widened rear wheel arches (only later versions of the 12 original Lightweights had this feature). The E-type badge on the steering wheel. The lovely fuel filler. The bonnet straps. The details around the boot latch. How many’s that? (See them in the gallery above.)
And a free watch with every car?
No, not free (we believe it’s £35,000 – ed). It’s a Bremont, limited edition of one per vehicle, and has details like a face that matches the tacho and strap and trim that match the car’s colour. It even features the car’s chassis and engine numbers.
As an E-type owner yourself, what would you give for one of the six?
My right arm?
Your next Jaguar re-creation project?
You will have to wait and see.