1963 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 3.8 Fixed Head Coupe
- Everything that Jaguar Cars learned about sports cars during its legendary five victories at Le Mans in the 1950s went into their production E-Type model; introduced at the Geneva International Motor Show in March 1961, Jaguar used an up-rated version of their wonderful straight-six XK series engine which was fitted into Sir William Lyons' stunningly beautiful, Malcolm Sayer-designed monocoque bodyshell. The new E-Type, or XKE for the American market, was immediately acclaimed not only for its elegance but also for its exceptional value for money. There was little doubt that the beautifully finished and equipped two-seater was one of the fastest cars of its time and potential drivers had the reassurance that all this performance was matched by sophisticated brakes, handling, and outstanding cornering power. It was an immediate and lasting success. Little wonder that the E-Type is rightly regarded to this day as one of the most important designs from a brilliant era.
This classic 3.8 liter Series I Fixed Head Coupe, chassis # 889700 was built in December 1963 and according to its Jaguar Heritage Trust certificate was sold new via Jaguar Cars, NY having been dispatched in late January 1964. Its original color scheme was Pale Primrose Yellow with Black upholstery.
For many years the E-Type was thought to have resided in California (it comes with its former CA black plates) and the overall condition now is of a rally/driving-ready car, mechanically fully sorted and rebuilt while the bodywork is indicative of an older restoration on a rust-free car. The current custodian acquired it in March 2015; his starting point was a trouble free event car into which he subsequently spared no expense in preparing all the mechanical aspects. Prior to him, the owner was a Mr. William Eaddy from South Carolina. Mr. Eaddy was a long-time race enthusiast with the SCCA who ran the car with a race tuned and bored out 4.2 liter engine. He did however keep the original 3.8 liter motor as a spare and which was carefully rebuilt by Jack Woerle, a British car expert and SVRA technical director. Additionally the matching number cylinder head was rebuilt by Terry’s Jaguars whilst the SU carburetors were rebuilt by Joe Curto. The current owner used the E-Type regularly, including 1,000 mile tours, after undertaking mechanical rebuild work through the Spring of 2019. At that time he made a decision to commission a full mechanical rebuild including removing (what was then) the non-original 4.2 engine and replacing it with the rebuilt original matching numbers block-to-cylinder head engine.
The engine bay was also restored and this included the installation of stainless-steel heater hoses behind the firewall. Before re-fitting the engine, the well-known specialists Donovan Jaguar inspected its internals and upgraded it with several features such as uprated gaskets, rod end nuts replacing the cottor pins, upgraded timing chain tensioner and then running the engine on their dyno test bed. After this work the E-Type and its engine were shipped to Autowerks to restore the motor compartment and make the aforementioned engine swap.
Other items replaced or attended to include a refinished flywheel, new porcelain manifolds, new stainless steel-exhaust, new upgraded motor mounts, Petronix ignition, all hoses replaced with silicone upgrades, front and rear suspension rebuilt including bearings, shocks and connecting components, steering rack and new steering column bearings. Further the current owner had an all-round brake rebuild with new stainless steel sleeves, new master cylinder, new clutch master and new clutch components. The radiator was recored and a new header tank fitted while the water pump was rebuilt as well as the heater box and cables. The gas tank was re-sealed, the wiper motor attended to and new bushings were fitted for the gear shift linkage. The interior was also replaced and finally 5 new Vredestein Sport Classic tires were fitted to upgraded 6” wide wire wheels.
Following all this the car has travelled some 2000 miles or so and which has included participating on the Texas 1000, all without incident. On file are receipts for over $80,000 for the mechanical and interior restoration work. As of today the exterior cosmetics and some panel fits are slightly older and showing a gentle patina; however, this should not detract from what is an ideal tour/driving or rally E-Type, an example that a new owner can surely enjoy without the worry or concern about having to be overprotective as to its condition.
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