Work on the very special hand-built sportscars is due for completion this summer and will mark the culmination of a project that started over 50 years ago.
The Lightweight E-type is reborn. Photo:AFP
That's because back in 1963 the company set out to build 18 ‘Special GT E-type Cars' in order to homologate the car for GT racing.
And although the car went on to compete and to be driven by such racing stalwarts as Graham Hill, Jackie Stewart, Roy Salvadori and Briggs Cunningham, only 12 customer versions were built and delivered to Jaguar customers by 1964, meaning that Jaguar has six designated chassis numbers which have been lying dormant. Well until now.
As well as having authentic chassis numbers, each of the cars will be built to exactly the same specification as the original 12 -- so an all-aluminum body, an aluminum engine block housing a 3.8-liter XK engine and an aluminum hardtop.
1963 Silverstone Lightweight E-type. Photo:AFP
What's more, all work will be carried out by hand by the company's craftsmen to ensure authenticity.
Not surprisingly, Jaguar expects demand from collectors to be high for these perfect reproductions and hopes that interested parties will form an orderly queue.
The company won't be releasing pricing information until this summer when the cars are finished but has said that it will give priority to established Jaguar collectors, especially those with historic race car interests.