Elegant, beautiful, iconic and inspired by Jaguar’s Le Mans three peat of victories in the 1950’s . A car that defined an era of style and continues its legacy as an untouchable classic in the modern day, is there really a more iconic British car than the E-Type?
At the time of release in the 1960’s Jaguar had two main competitors, Aston Martin and Ferrari but what set them apart from their rivals was the price of the car when released. The E-Type upon release (converted to todays price equivalent) was £40,000, which was half the price of the latest Aston and a third of the price of the latest Ferrari. But this didn’t mean the E-Type was produced like a budget sports car, it took only 6.9 seconds to reach 60 mph which at the time was up there with one of the fastest luxury sports cars in the world, furthermore reaching a top speed of 150mph.
Legendary designer Enzo Ferrari, who was one of Jaguars fiercest competitors, even said the famed quote claiming the E-Type to be “the most beautiful car ever made,” upon its release in March of 1961. With such high praise from one of the most accomplished figures in the automobile industry, there was really no ceiling for what the E-Type was capable of, and for how big of an impact the mark it was going to make on the culture.
The E-Type was (and still is) a symbol of ultimate style and British racing excellence. In 2004 Sports Car International magazine put the E-Type at #1 on their list of “ Top Sports Cars of the 1960’s.” Showing a clear distinction to its rivals, as arguably, to this day the E-Type is the most prominent car left from the era of 1960’s sports cars. It was also used in the film Austin Powers, being a very memorable part in its Union Jack flag wrap, capturing the minds of moviegoers and car enthusiasts alike.
In the current day the E-Type continues to excite and amaze no matter what generation you are from. The beauty of the extraordinary body design can draw instant attachment from anybody, from the mark it made on the history of automobiles to the stunning appearance, and cemented status as a British cultural centre-point, the E-Type is really one of a kind and a true icon.