Jaguar recently announced a 60-car run of the F-Type R "Heritage Edition" as a tribute to the historic E-Type, a now-iconic British roadster that was famously declared "the most beautiful ever made" by Enzo Ferrari. Instead of copping a special variant of the E-Type's modern kin, you can score the real deal at RM Sotheby's upcoming Arizona auction.
Not only did it receive superlative praise from the Prancing Horse progenitor, the E-Type is one of very few automobiles ever to be admitted to the Museum of Modern Art's permanent collection, alongside other all-time classics like the 1965 Porsche 911, 1953 Jeep MD, and 1959 Volkswagen Beetle. But what makes this particular example especially enticing is that it's a 1961, the first model year of the sought-after Series 1 generation.
A frame-off concours-level restoration was completed by marque expert Dave Ferguson in 2013. He refinished the exterior in its original Opalescent Bronze and dressed the interior in a "pumpkin" beige leather to match the original upholstery. Rather than being re-fitted with the retro fawn-colored top, an arguably more striking black convertible soft top was installed.
While Jaguar's 3.8-litre inline six-cylinder is still under the hood, Ferguson went for a more accessibly geared five-speed manual in place of the correct four-speed Moss (though that original transmission included with purchase). Larger front disc brakes provide better stopping power, but the majority of the car's other factory parts were used elsewhere, including the headlamp covers, windscreen, fluid reservoir, nuts, bolts and washers.
RM Sotheby's has further details on its provenance:
According to its Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust Certificate, this left-hand drive Series 1 E-Type was built on 2 October 1961 and dispatched to New York on 12 October 1961. Exactly 30 days later, it was delivered to its first owner in Los Angeles, California.
Three subsequent owners have had possession of the car prior to the consigner purchasing it in 2016: the second owner purchased it in the late 1960s, Kirk Fry of Palo Alto, California took ownership in 1976, and the fourth owner in 2002.
Valued at between $200,000-$250,000, the 1961 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 3.8-Liter Roadster is one of 91 lots set to hit the block at RM Sotheby's Arizona auction on January 22, 2021.