Like Michael Caine and Twiggy, the Jaguar E-Type was a 60s style icon that came to epitomise everything that was cool about the decade. Once described as the ‘essence of British brilliance’, this beautiful car sprang onto the UK’s motoring scene at a time when most other cars were boring and safe; at last giving motoring fans something to pin up on their wall and dream about.
And now, there’s a new one.
Coming some 50 years after the last E-Type rolled off the production line; Jaguar has built six new lightweight ‘Special FT’ E-Types — all of which, we’re sorry to say, have already been sold. But not to worry, as we’re here to share 6 reasons we’re a little bit in love with Jaguar’s new plaything.
Weighs the same as a Fiat Punto; has the power output of a Ford Focus RS
You heard right. The new lightweight Special FT car has been meticulously redesigned and developed to make it as a light as possible. The result? It weighs the same as a Fiat Punto, but has the power of a Ford Focus RS — one of the hottest hatchbacks currently on the market.
It takes 6,000 man-hours to build just one car
Because Jaguar are sticklers for detail, they don’t do things by halves. The new E-Type reportedly takes 6,000 hours to build by hand using traditional techniques; not a single robot was used to build one component on the car. Instead, the car’s panels were hammered by skilled metalworkers, and each component was created by an expert craftsman over hundreds of painstaking hours.
Built in Browns Lane — Jaguar’s historic production base
Unlike new cars that are built by robots thousands of miles from the UK, the new E-Type was built right here in the UK at Jaguar’s legendary Browns Lane production plant — the self-same place that the original E-Type was first produced in the 1960s. Over the years, mass-production has ceased at the Browns Lane site, but Jaguar took it upon themselves to reopen the plant for the production of the new cars.
Shares the same straight-six engine as the D-Type Le Mans race car
In the 1950s, Jaguar’s D-Type race car won the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans three times, thanks in part to its powerful straight-six engine. That very engine is now housed in the new E-type, giving the car the performance of an iconic racer. The straight-six engine has been highly developed, allowing the car to rival an XR over a quarter mile stretch.
Technicians used lasers to replicate the original car to the exact millimetre
In order to accurately reproduce all of the 230 parts that make up the E-Type, technicians used high-tech lasers to create a digital map of the existing car. This meant that they could recreate each part to the exact millimetre; effectively building a car that could have been produced in the 1960s or the 2000s.
The paintjob alone cost £40,000
If you thought splashing the cash on a £300 optional paintjob for you new car was bad, it doesn’t compare to the price of the E-Type’s paintwork — a cool £40,000. Why the high price tag? Technicians wanted to match the exact colour of the original E-Types, and so spent a painstaking amount of time sourcing different coloured paints from around the world. This £40K price seems laughable when you consider that the paintwork of the original car cost just £5 per gallon.
While we can’t bring you any closer to owning your very own E-Type, we can make sure your current car is as fuel efficient as possible. Redex fuel additives are specially developed to help your engine run more efficiently, so you can save extra cash at the pumps. To find out more, visit the Redex website.
Image Source: Jaguar UK