It's a crisp winter day in the British countryside and Jimmy Hendrix plays in the background. Beth Lily Georgia is about to experience the swinging sixties as it has never been experiences before.
The Jaguar E-Type, dubbed “the most beautiful car” by Enzo Ferrari during its debut at the 1961 Geneva Motor Show, exudes an ethereal presence that inspires emotion in just about anyone that comes into contact with one.
The E-Type was originally influenced by the triple Le Mans winning D-Type from the 50s and was an absolute phenomenon at Geneva where it was launched, shaking the automotive industry to the core. The E-Type has been a classic icon for nearly 60 years and is still well loved today.
In September 2017, Jaguar surprised the automotive world by releasing the E-Type Zero concept; an allelectric conversion of the beloved classic. The concept sees the XK6 engine replaced with an electric powertrain, yet is designed to retain the driving experience of the original model.
Jaguar Classic Works is the stuffof dreams for any car enthusiast, filled with vehicles ranging from the first ever Land Rover, which I’m told was recently discovered in a hedge after being missing for many years, to forgotten 90’s supercars.
From restorations to conversions, to storage and even a warehouse full of Jaguar’s own classic car collection, Jaguar Classic is a perfectionist’s heaven. Each customer deals with a sole master-builder who works on their car and the emotional attachment these masterbuilders have to the vehicles they work with is evident in the meticulous detail and artistry evident on the workshop floor.
It is, therefore, the ideal location to experience the Jaguar E-Type Zero.
The technical details
Offering pure driving pleasure, the E-Type Zero feels like it would be best suited to winding country roads and a warm summer’s breeze, but I am more than happy to experience its drivability on a typically British rainy winter’s day, as I’m taken on a tour of the local roads. The E-Type master-builder accompanying me explains that in terms of the chassis and suspension, no modifications have been made in order to maintain as much of the original character as possible.
The 40kWh battery pack sits exactly where the engine once sat, mounted to the original engine mounts. It has a nominal 600V and a usable capacity of around 36kWh.
Because the car is light, has a fairly low frontal area and low rolling resistance it ends up with a useful range of around 170 real world miles. Performance is taken care of with a respectable 0-60 time of 5.5 seconds.
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