1966 Jaguar XKE 2+2 Series 1

If Les Vingt Quatre Heures du Mans has been responsible for the new E-type Jaguar, then that Homeric contest on the Sarthe circuit will have been abundantly justified. Here we have one of the quietest and most flexible cars on the market, capable of whispering along in top gear at 10 mph or leaping into its 150 mph stride on the brief depression of a pedal. A practical touring car, this, with its wide doors and capacious luggage space, yet it has a sheer beauty of line which easily beats the Italians at their own particular game. ­— John Bolster in Autosport, 1961

Conceived and developed as an open sports car, the Jaguar E-type debuted at the Geneva Salon in March 1961 in coupe form. The car caused a sensation — spontaneous applause breaking out at the unveiling — with its instantly classic lines and 150-mph top speed. The design owed much to that of the racing D-type, a monocoque tub forming the main structure while a tubular space frame extended forwards to support the engine.

Like its 3.8-liter forebear, the 4.2-liter E-type was built in roadster and coupe forms, and in 1966 was joined by an additional “family friendly” 2+2 coupe variant on a longer wheelbase. With the 2+2’s increased length and additional rear seats came greater headroom, more luggage space, improved heating/ventilation and optional automatic transmission. 

This car was purchased by the current vendor in 2010, having already undergone partial restoration, including a repaint, much of the work being carried out by Jaguar specialists Martin Robey. Since then further restoration has been undertaken by D & A Dennis Engineers, of Essex. The engine has covered fewer than 2,000 miles since a complete rebuild (full breakdown of works on file). More recently, the car has been fully serviced by Racing Green and fitted with a high-torque starter motor.

Paul Hardiman

Paul Hardiman - SCM Senior Auction Analyst

Paul is descended from engineers and horse thieves, so he naturally gravitated toward the old-car marketplace and still finds fascination in the simpler things in life: looking for spot-weld dimples under an E-type tail, or counting the head-studs on a supposed Mini-Cooper engine. His motoring heroes are Roger Clark, Burt Levy, Henry Royce and Smokey Yunick — and all he wants for next Christmas is an Alvis Stalwart complete with picnic table in the back and a lake big enough to play in.

Posted in English