CLASSICS

Classic Jaguar E-type to celebrate anniversary in style

Specially restored E-type coupés and roadsters will commemorate the icon’s 60th birthday

Only 12 of these rare creations will be made in honour of one of the most beautiful cars ever made. Picture: SUPPLIED
Only 12 of these rare creations will be made in honour of one of the most beautiful cars ever made.   Picture: SUPPLIED

On March 15, Jaguar will celebrate the 60th anniversary of the iconic E-type sports car through the creation of 12 limited-edition restored cars.

The first two have been unveiled as the first matched pair of E-type 60 Collection cars.

The E-type made its world debut in Geneva, Switzerland on March 15 1961. The public reaction to the lone coupé available for test drives was so strong that Jaguar rushed a second E-type, a roadster, from the factory in Coventry, UK to Geneva overnight.

Six decades later, the E-type 60 Collection pays tribute to these two legendary cars: the opalescent gunmetal grey coupé 9600 HP driven flat out by Bob Berry to make the launch itself; and the British Racing Green roadster 77 RW driven by Norman Dewis, who was told to “drop everything” to get to Geneva the next day.

Six 9600 HP-inspired, E-type 60 Edition, fixed-head coupés are finished in unique “flat out grey” paintwork with “smooth black” leather interior and 1961 tribute details.

Six E-type 60 Edition roadsters mirror 77 RW with unique “drop everything green” paintwork and a “suede green” leather interior and 1961 tribute details.

Each smooth black, leather-trimmed coupé features a stylised route map plotting the key locations along the route taken by Berry, with an overhead sketch of the E-type and the words, “I thought you’d never get here”, recalling the reaction of Jaguar founder Sir William Lyons to Berry’s arrival just minutes before the unveiling.

For the six suede green, leather-trimmed roadsters, the engraving tracks the route taken by Dewis on his last-minute drive to Switzerland, with a sketch of the car and another Lyons’ quote — this time his instructions to Norman: “Drop everything and bring the open top E-type over.”

Johnny Dowell, artist and designer “King Nerd’, said: “This was a fantastic opportunity to design and engrave the stories of two epic drives by two Jaguar legends in these iconic and special cars. A permanent reminder of the anniversary, everywhere these E-types go, the memory of Bob Berry and Norman Dewis will travel with them.”

Bespoke design elements include a commemorative, E-type 60 logo, which adorns the bonnet badge, fuel cap, chassis plate and clock face in the tachometer developed in conjunction with Julian Thomson, Jaguar design director.

Each E-type 60 Edition features a specially developed, close-ratio, five-speed manual gearbox, mated to the 197kW, 3.8l, in-line, six-cylinder Jaguar XK engine.

The motor benefits from an authentic 1961-style alloy radiator, with electric cooling fan and electronic ignition for everyday usability, as well as a polished stainless steel exhaust system. This new exhaust system is dimensionally identical to the standard, mild steel system but produces a slightly deeper tone and offers greater longevity.

A Jaguar Classic infotainment system with satellite navigation and Bluetooth connectivity, in addition to the centre console, the bonnet badge, clock face within the tachometer, fuel cap and chassis plate are all finished with a commemorative E-type 60 logo created by Jaguar Design, featuring the years 1961-2021.

A light, beech-rimmed steering wheel, as fitted to 1961 cars, features a 24-karat gold horn push.

Every car is supplied with a tailor-made, E-type 60 car cover, tool roll and jack storage bags to complete the enhancements and exemplify the attention to detail lavished on each vehicle.

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