1962 Jaguar E-type Series 1 3.8 FHC

  • 1962 Jaguar E-type Series 1 3.8 FHC for sale
  • Bare-shell restoration in the early 2000s
  • Webasto sunroof
  • Subtle upgrades include Coopercraft brakes and Kenlowe fan

Having been painstakingly restored in the early 2000s, this Jaguar E-type has been cared for by enthusiast owners in the intervening years and is a beautiful example of this landmark sports car.

Built on 10 May 1962, chassis number 860541 was originally Opalescent Dark Blue with a Light Blue interior. As a right-hand-drive, UK-market car, it was dispatched on 18 May via Henlys London to Pembury Car Sales in Kent, and its first owner was a DA Pierpoint in North Chorley, Sussex. It was registered on 21 May with the number 470 TKN, which was subsequently changed to 5038 JN. 

The logbook shows that, during the 1970s, the E-type passed through a succession of owners who all lived in or around Bristol. It was then stored for almost 20 years before being acquired by a professional restorer who used to carry out work for a major marque specialist.  

Intending to keep the car for himself, he embarked on a complete bare-shell rebuild. The original engine – R5530-9 – had suffered frost damage so he replaced it with the 3.8-litre unit from a Jaguar MkX. New Martin Robey body panels were fitted where needed, a Webasto sunroof was added, a new wiring loom was installed, the interior was retrimmed, and correspondence in the history file suggests that ‘every part’ was either replaced or reconditioned.

The restoration was completed in about 2003, the final stage being a thorough course of rust-proofing treatment, but a change in the owner’s circumstances meant that it was used very little over the next five years. It was carefully stored in an air chamber during that time before passing via a dealer to a new custodian in 2008. A keen marque enthusiast, he was an active member of both the E-type Club and the XK Club and eventually sold the car only because he acquired an XK 140 as well. 

During his time with 5038 JN, he decided to replace the MkX engine with a correct E-type unit. He therefore sourced a suitable block – number R9788-8, which was upgraded to a 9:1 compression ratio with Mahle pistons. He also fitted a modern crankshaft oil seal and a Kenlowe fan, while other sensible upgrades include a taller diff ratio for more comfortable cruising, Coopercraft four-pot front calipers, and rear brakes from the later 4.2 Series 1. 

Before he decided to sell the E-type, it twice won Best in Show awards, featured on the E-Type Club stand at the Silverstone Classic, and appeared in a book written by renowned Jaguar historian Phillip Porter. 

A recent programme of work under its current owner included the fitment of Polybushes throughout, plus new brake pipes, radius arms and radiator. The original Moss gearbox has been reconditioned, the footwell carpets replaced, and the coolant flushed. 

Now being offered for sale, this well-presented early Jaguar E-type comes with a large folder of invoices and correspondence, plus a photographic history of the restoration. 

Model history

Designed by the brilliant aerodynamicist Malcolm Sayer, the Jaguar E-type caused a sensation when it was launched at the 1961 Geneva Salon. Beneath its beautifully curvaceous bodywork was a layout that owed much to the Le Mans-winning D-type, for which Sayer had devised a central monocoque structure and then added a front subframe for the engine.

That layout was retained for the E-type, which replaced the D-type’s live rear axle with independent suspension all round. It was introduced with the 3.8-litre, triple-carburettor, straight-six engine from the outgoing XK 150 S and early road tests produced a headline top speed of 150mph. 

When John Bolster tested a pre-production E-type for Autosport, he wrote that it was ‘capable of whispering along in top gear at 10mph or leaping into its 150mph stride on the brief depression of a pedal. A practical touring car, this… yet it has a sheer beauty of line which easily beats the Italians at their own particular game.’

Production of the roadster and FHC slowly ramped up through 1961, with early cars also scoring some notable competition success. Updates came thick and fast as Jaguar struggled to keep up with demand. In 1962, the ‘flat floors’ were modified in order to provide the driver with more room around the pedals, and in late 1964 the engine was enlarged to 4.2 litres. At the same time, a Jaguar gearbox with synchromesh on all four speeds replaced the previous Moss gearbox.

In 1966, a 2+2 model was added to the range, and not until 1968 did the Series 1 morph into the facelifted Series 2. A V12 engine was fitted for the Series III of 1971, and four years later the iconic E-type was replaced by the new XJ-S.

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