The Jaguar E-type was initially designed and shown to the public as a grand tourer in two seater coupé form (FHC or Fixed Head Coupe) and as convertible (OTS or Open Two Seater). The model was made in 3 distinct versions generally referred to as "Series 1", "Series 2" and "Series 3". A transitional series between Series 1 and Series 2 is known unofficially as "Series 1½". Series 2 cars such as this one feature Open headlights without glass covers (Earlier cars had problems with misting, despite gaskets), a wrap-around rear bumper, re-positioned and larger front indicators and taillights below the bumpers, better cooling aided by an enlarged "mouth" and twin electric fans, and uprated brakes are hallmarks of Series 2 cars. De-tuned in US, but still with triple SUs in the UK, the engine is easily identified visually by the change from smooth polished cam covers to a more industrial 'ribbed' appearance. Late Series 1½ cars also had ribbed cam covers. The interior and dashboard were also redesigned, with flick switches being substituted for rocker switches that met U.S health and safety regulations. The dashboard switches also lost their symmetrical layout. New seats were fitted, which purists claim lacked the style of the originals but were certainly more comfortable. Air conditioning and power steering were available as factory options. It was available in FHC, OTS, and 2+2 versions. The E type is generally considered one of the seminal sports car designs of all time, in fact it was displayed in the Museum of Modern Art due to its stunning lines. No collection is complete without an E type.
Shortly after the introduction of the E-Type, Jaguar wanted to investigate the possibility of building a car more in the spirit of the D-Type racer from which elements of the E-Type's styling and design were derived. One car was built to test the concept designed as a coupé. Unlike the steel production E-Types, the LDC used lightweight aluminium. Malcolm Sayer retained the original tub with lighter outer panels riveted and glued to it. The front steel sub frame remained intact, the windshield was given a more pronounced slope, and the rear hatch was welded shut. Rear brake cooling ducts appeared next to the rear windows, and the interior trim was discarded, with only insulation around the transmission tunnel. With the exception of the windscreen, all cockpit glass was perspex. A tuned version of Jaguar's 3.8-litre engine with a wide-angle cylinder head design tested on the D-Type racers was used.
The only test bed car was completed in summer of 1962 but was sold a year later to Jaguar racing driver Dick Protheroe. Since then it has passed through the hands of several collectors on both sides of the Atlantic and is now believed to reside in the private collection of the current Viscount Cowdray.
Peter Lindner, the Jaguar distributor in Germany, had his Lightweight modified by competition department to include the low drag roof and rear panels as part of an effort to win the GT class at Le Mans. Lindner's car was more than a match for the Ferrari 250 GTO but mechanical problems forced it out of the race. Lindner was later killed in a racing accident that demolished his car, which has recently been restored.
Jaguar waited too long before committing to a racing program in earnest and what could have been a world champion in 1962 was not competitive by 1965.
This Low Drag Coupe Replica was hand built out of Aluminum by a former employee of Lynx Cars using a 1970 XKE as a donor car. The Engine was bored out to 4.6 Liters and a 5 Speed was added for increased drivability and performance. The car also features Air Conditioning and a decent Stereo system- this is truly a Gentleman's Racer- a car that can driven to the track, raced all day and then driven back home again.
The car was featured in and road tested by Car and Driver Magazine after completion, a copy of which accompanies the car.