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Jaguar Car Club of Western Australia

Jaguar XJS

E type Register

Coming home from boarding school for the holidays aged 15, there sitting in the driveway was a very sad looking MGTD in pieces! My Father saying “By the time you put this together, you can take your driving test!”That started my interest in classic cars! Also at the same time the 150 mph E type had just been announced by the press.

My next project was a Vespa scooter rebuilt on the 3rd floor of my flat in my student days in Earls Court, London!!Some years later another MGTD bought by Frances was our mode of transport, and taken apart a few times over the next 15 years.
My first Jaguar  was a 1968 3.8 S type Jaguar, bought unseen from an auction house, and completely rebuilt, with the idea of bringing it to Australia, lovely to drive but it never got to Perth!
More years passed and I started to dabble in sports cars, building an MGB from a wreck and a pile of mismatched parts. Some of those parts eventuated into another MGB, with a fuel injected Rover V8 engine.
My Series 2 E-type coupe arrived in time for my retirement, being an American import it was free from major rust and was a good project to rebuild at home. Obviously if you have a Jaguar, it follows that you join the Jaguar Car Club!! We have had many years enjoying all aspects of the being part of the Club including being Registered Secretary of the E types.
In this Register it is interestingly to note that the CType Jaguar was the competition model of the Jaguar XK 120 and the D type followed. There is one of each in the Club, but no XKSS! (The road going version of the D type).
There are approximately 110 E-types, made up of 49 Series 1, 38 Series 2 and 22 Series 3. Engine sizes varying from 3.8 to 5.3 litres, and no electric one as yet!!
Being a member of the Jaguar Club increases the enjoyment of owning a Jaguar and perhaps for the E types 60th Birthday in 2021 we could have all 110 E types on display!

The E type was revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1961. Jaguar showed the world their latest sports car the likes of which had never been seen before and unlikely to be seen again. The impact on the motoring press and the motoring public was huge. Few knew that the second car at the launch, an Open Two Seat, was driven all night from Coventry by the Test Driver Norman Dewis and arrived with only enough time for a wash before podium display!

The E type took a quantum technological leap from its rich C and D type heritage. The pure aerodynamic lines were set by master aerodynamicist Malcolm Sayer. Breakthrough development in metal fabrication uncompromisingly realised the E-Type’s lines. Similar to the aerospace industry the monocoque construction, supporting tube steel engine and front suspension frames facilitated production of the eye-catching E-Type shape.

At launch the E type was powered by the proven 3.8 litre, twin cam, over head valve, straight 6 cylinder engine. This engine looked as good as it performed. Sixty BHP per litre is still a creditable power output, even by today’s standards. The extensive use of polished aluminium and triple SU carburettors is a sight to behold. It is an instant attraction when the large front hinged bonnet is opened.

The engine was coupled to the strong Moss gearbox. At the rear was the unique Independent Rear Suspension of Formula 1 sophistication with inboard disc brakes.
Eye catching lines, exhilarating acceleration, 150 MPH capability and remarkably modest cost meant that the E type had it all Shape, Performance and Price.
The introduction of the 4.2 litre engine in 1964 coupled to the 4-speed Jaguar designed all synchromesh gearbox was well received. The practicality of a 2+2 was offered in 1965 with a 9 inch increase in length and a 2 inch higher roof line.

After a short transition period, the Factory introduced the Series 2 to embody the design changes necessary to comply with evolving safety requirements.
Jaguar has a long history of proving their new engines in their sports cars before introducing the developed refined engines into their saloons. The silky smooth 5.3 litre V12 engine followed this principle. To package the V12 into the low bonnet necessitated widening of the body and flaring the mud guards for wider tyres. The 2+2 length was adopted as common to the Series 3 Open Two Seat as well.

The E type has proven to be a timeless creation and evokes the same comments and feeling today as it did it it’s unveiling in 1961. The description of “iconic” is often used. The E-Type is a classic example of the design principle of form following function.
Enzo Ferrari said “the E type was the most beautiful car ever made.”

Over the 13 years of production, there were three official Series. They are Series 1, 2 and 3. For a short period there was a transition configuration between the Series 1 and 2 that, over time, has come to be known ‘unofficially’ as the Series ‘1½.’
Within the above broad designations, there are different engine sizes and body configurations. They are:

1961 to 1964
Series 1
3.8 litre straight 6
Open Two Seat (OTS)
Fixed Head Coupe (FHC)

1964 to 1968
Series 1
4.2 litre straight 6
2+2 1965 to 1968

1967 to 1968
Series ‘1½’
4.2 litre straight 6
OTS, FHC and 2+2

1968 to 1970
Series 2
4.2 litre straight 6
OTS, FHC and 2+2

1970 to 1974
Series 3
5.3 litre V 12
OTS and 2+2

More about Registers at the Jaguar Car Club of WA

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