1968 Jaguar E-Type SI
Year of manufacture1968
1968 Jaguar E-Type 4.2-Litre 'Series 1½' Roadster
Chassis no. 1E17004
Engine no. 7E16015-9
Launched in October 1964, the 4.2-litre E-Type came with a more user friendly, all-synchromesh gearbox and superior Lockheed brake servo as part of the improved specification alongside the bigger, torquier engine. Apart from '4.2' badging, the car's external appearance was unchanged, but beneath the skin there were numerous detail improvements. These mainly concerned the cooling and electrical systems, the latter gaining an alternator and adopting the industry standard negative earth, while the interior boasted a matt black dashboard and improved seating arrangements. The E-Type's top speed remained unchanged at around 150mph, the main performance gain resulting from the larger engine being improved flexibility.
For 1968 the E-Type underwent major revision to comply with US safety and emissions legislation, emerging in 'Series 2' guise minus the original's distinctive headlight covers. In addition, enlarged side and rear lights were adopted while a thickened front bumper centre section bridged a larger radiator intake. Interior changes included a collapsible steering column and rocker switches in place of the earlier toggles. Beneath the bonnet the familiar XK engine now boasted ribbed cam covers and, on cars destined for North America, twin Stromberg carburettors, replacing the previous triple SUs that remained standard on those supplied to other markets. The adoption of the Strombergs, together with their associated inlet plumbing and a new Lucas ignition distributor, enabled the E-Type to meet the emissions targets but, inevitably, resulted in a reduction in power. From late 1967 the E-Type began to embody some of the forthcoming modifications, these interim cars coming to be known as the 'Series 1½', although there was never a fixed specification for this unofficial 'model'. The Series 1½ E-Types are relatively rare, combining the looks of a Series 1 with some of the improvements of the Series 2. For many enthusiasts, the 4.2-litre Series 1 and 1½ cars are the ultimate and most desirable E-Types, combining as they do the stylistic purity of the original with the larger and more powerful engine.
Manufactured in February 1968 during this transitional period, this outstanding Series 1½ E-Type was despatched on 18th March '68 to Jaguar Cars, New York, USA. The accompanying JDHT Certificate confirms matching numbers and records the original colour scheme as opalescent silver blue with dark blue interior and blue top.
Following the car's importation from the USA to Italy a few years ago, the owner commissioned a comprehensive restoration of the mechanicals, bodywork, and interior by a specialist workshop in Italy. During the restoration the colour was changed to the most attractive combination of black exterior and hood with a beautifully finished dark red leather interior. The result can only be described as stunning, and a selection of photographs taken at various stages of the restoration is on file, documenting all aspects of the rebuild. On the restoration's completion in 2013 the E-Type was registered in Italy. An Italian specialist's report dated 2014 testifies to the car's generally excellent restored condition. Importantly, the car retains its original engine block, which corresponds to the number on the Heritage Certificate.
Offered with Italian registration papers and the aforementioned documentation, this beautifully finished, original left-hand drive E-Type Roadster deserves the closest inspection.