1961 Jaguar E-Type SI
Year of manufacture1961
Number of seats2
The ex-Michael Head CBE, 22nd Coupé built and the property of Quentin Willson
1961 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 'Flat Floor' 3.8-Litre Coupé
Registration no. 150 ABL
Chassis no. 860022
Engine no. R2449-9
Completed on 30th October 1961 during the first few weeks of production, this vehicle is one of the earliest surviving right-hand drive Jaguar E-Type coupés (the chassis number sequence commenced at '860001'). '150 ABL', chassis number '860022', is the 22nd right-hand drive coupé to leave Brown's Lane and one of the famed early batch of home-market E-Types no doubt assembled with extra care - allocated to prominent racing drivers and teams. Norman Dewis, Jaguar's legendary chief tester, has a diary note (in the history file) that he personally tested '860022' at MIRA on the orders of Jaguar's racing team boss, F R W 'Lofty' England, prior to delivery to customer M W Head.
Brigadier Michael Head, CBE was a privateer Jaguar racer who successfully campaigned an alloy-bodied XK120, C-Type, D-Type and Cooper-Jaguar throughout the late 1940s and the 1950s. He competed in 100 races between 1949 and 1957, coming 1st in 26 of them, 2nd in 18 and in 1955 came 5th in the Swedish Grand Prix behind Moss and Fangio. His son, Patrick Head, of co-founder and former Technical Director of the Williams Formula 1 team remembers '150 ABL' well, and in a letter in the history file says that his father's strong motor sport relationship with Jaguar enabled him to buy one of these desirable very early cars. Brigadier Head was also Director of the War Office's Fighting Vehicles establishment and a founder member of the Jaguar Drivers' Club, whose Michael Head Trophy Race is named in his honour.
One of the finest and most original early E-Type coupés in existence, '860022' retains its 1961 registration number and chassis plate, and has matching engine, gearbox and flywheel numbers. Interestingly the original registration (150 ABL Berkshire County Council) is one digit previous to a works MGA - 151 ABL - that competed in the 1962 Monte Carlo Rally. Bracknell Motors in Berkshire, the Jaguar dealer who originally delivered this E-Type to Michael Head, campaigned racing MKII Jaguars and had period motor sport connections. The ABL suffix was used on several other competition cars notably 737 ABL on Pat Moss's famous Mini Cooper.
All details, numbers and colours exactly match those listed on the Jaguar Heritage Certificate. The car has many early features including in-set bonnet louvres, glassfibre glove box, flat sump, Dunlop brake servo, flat-top dash, Cheney hose clamps, Bakelite brake and clutch reservoir tops, Butlers number plate lights, 1st edition handbook and a Shelly bottle jack. A Jaguar Drivers' Club concours winner, '860022' was fully restored by respected marque specialist Martin Robey over a nine-year period (2003-2012). Only some 1,000 miles have been covered since its completion and the car is presented in superlative condition. The only notified deviations from factory specification are electronic ignition, a high-torque starter motor and alternator electrics.
The car is accompanied by three large ring binders of history containing service bills and ownership details dating back to the 1970s, an old-style logbook and V5 registration document plus a full photographic record of the comprehensive body, mechanical and interior restoration. There is over £100,000 worth of invoices for work done over the last ten years together with photographs and letters from previous owners plus magazine features and records of television appearances. A complete early toolkit and Jaguar owner's wallet containing the correct 1961 books and literature are present also. An instant starter, totally reliable and in truly concours condition, '150 ABL' is currently MoT'd/taxed and needs no work whatsoever.