Sir William Lyons presented the E-Type in 1961 as his road-going successor to the racing D-Type. These vehicles had a long bonnet, curvaceous fenders and pouting mouth. The design was the work of Malcolm Sayer, a legendary aerodynamicist, who was one of the first to apply the principles of aerodynamics to mass-production motorcar design.
The E-Type (or XK-E as it would be known in the United States), introduced at the March 1961 Geneva Auto Show, received rave reviews. The 1961 E-Type featured a double overhead cam engine, fully independent rear suspension and four-wheel disc brakes (inboard at the rear, something usually found only on race cars). Clearly, the company's racing pedigree had found its way into a proper GT car.
The first series of the Jaguar XJ-E suffered from early teething problems including brake fade, overheating and restrictive foot space. The 4.2-engined Series I and II cars addressed many of these complaints with larger brakes, improved cooling, and better interior room. The second series (introduced in 1968) also brought important safety improvements which helped them comply with growing U.S. safety rules. They had larger tail lamps and open style headlamps. Emissions were reduced thanks, in part, to two Zenith carburetors replacing the triple-carb arrangement. Externally, the radiator air intake increased substantially in size, and larger, full-width bumpers provided compliance with U.S. low-speed impact requirements.
Braking was improved the deletion of the Kelsey-Hayes bellows-type servo and replaced by a Lockheed vacuum booster. The large Girling disc brakes utilized three-piston calipers at the front and two-piston units at the rear. Another mechanical change was to the well-proven 4.2-liter six-cylinder engine, which received a higher-capacity water pump to help adapt better to warmer climates. The aluminum dash panels and center consoles were now covered in black leather. The seats became more accommodating and comfortable. Reclining seats with adjustable headrests were now standard.
Clearly, there were changes made to the car, all with retaining the style and beauty of the original XK-E. the only external distinguishing feature of the 4.2 E-Type was the badge on the trunk lid. By Daniel Vaughan | Oct 2011
This XK-E Fixed Head Coupe is all original. It has been with the current owner for fifty-three years (as of 2012) and remains as a true reference as to how these cars when they left the factory at Coventry.
The Series II, which debuted in late 1968, was the first major revision of this classic design. Changes were primarily done to meet worldwide safety regulation concerning lighting, bumper heights, etc. The same double overhead cam six continued with some modifications to meet emissions standards. in United States trim, it was still good for 246 horsepower.
This particular example has been resurrected and fully restored from being a 'basket case.' Its timeless beauty is confirmed by the fact that an E-Type is one of the few cars in the collection of New York's Museum of Modern Art.
High bid of $61,000 at 2015 Mecum. (did not sell) Sold for $57,200 at 2017 Barrett-Jackson. This Jaguar E-Type Series 2 roadster was the recipient of a quality restoration several years ago. It is finished in classic Primrose Yellow with a Black leather interior and top. It has new leather upholstery, carpets and a new canvas soft top. Power is from a 4.2-liter engine offering 265 horsepower and mated to a synchronized 4-speed transmission. There are four wheel disc brakes, chrome wire wheels, and correct narrow Whitewall tires. By Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2016
The Jaguar E type, also known as the XK-E, brought style and performance together to create a mass-produced supercar. The road-going sports car was conceived in 1956 as a replacement for the D-type. In March of 1961 the E-Type was officially introduced to the world at the Geneva, Switzerland Motor show. It's design was created by an aerodynamic engineer named Malcolm Sayer. The front engine, rear-wheel drive vehicle featured a moncoque body and a tubular front chassis. The six-cylinder double-cam engine had three SU carburetors and produced 265 horsepower. The suspension was independent with disc brakes on all four wheels. It brought together the best or aerodynamics, coupled with the latest technology and propelled by a potent engine. The vehicle was not only fast, it offered excellent performance and handling. Some of the most common complaints it received were the cabin being too cramped and it suffered from poor ventilation.
The E-Type was a popular vehicle. It was fast, performed well, and was competitively priced. Due to the United States safety and emission regulations, some of the horsepower was lost. The headlamp covers were also removed prior to the close of the 1960's.
A 4.2-liter engine and synchromesh gearbox was introduced in 1964. In 1966, the 2+2 coupe was introduced and featured a longer wheelbase. The Series II cars were not as quick as its predecessors. The Series III, however, was a different story. Powered by a V-12 engine they were once again able to propel the E-Type over 145 miles per hour.
Production for the E-Type ceased in 1975, after 72,520 examples being produced. It was replaced by the XJ-S; a vehicle that was larger, heavier, and not as visually appealing. By Daniel Vaughan | Mar 2006