Back in 1963, British marquee Jaguar had commissioned the ‘Jaguar Lightweight E-Type’ project with the aim of creating 18 ‘Special GT E-Type Cars’. After producing only 12 examples however, the project was suspended. Now 50 years later, the British luxury brand has decided to resurrect the abandoned project and build the remaining six 1963 ‘Lightweight E-Type cars, under the company’s Heritage Business arm.
The E-Type was one of the all-time classic cars. It had just the right mix of the old and the new with its monocoque body, the long engine bonnet and the passenger cabin that looked as if it was hanging on for dear life. over 72,500 cars were built between the 1961 and 1974, which is remarkable. Aimed at the racing crowd, the Lightweight E-Type as the name suggests was a stripped down version of the E-Type, in order to get more speed and performance.
It differed from the standard E-Type in having an all-aluminum monocoque and aluminium body panels over a steel chassis, as well as a 3.8-litre, straight six XK engine with an aluminium engine block and head. For further weight reduction, the interior trim and chrome were ditched, and even the windows were re-designed. In the end, the Lightweight E-Type was able to shed 114 kg.
Jaguar’s Lightweight E-Types were raced in period by Graham Hill, Jackie Stewart, Roy Salvadori and Briggs Cunningham. Now, the remaining six chassis numbers that were left on hold for over a half a century, will be put to use again.