There are few British cars that you can say are recognised the world over, but with the Jaguar E-Type, it is really in a calibre all of its own. Based on Jaguar’s own D-Type car, that had clocked up a record hattrick of consecutive wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans from 1955 onwards, it was something special from the moment it was launched in the summer of 1961.
The first thing that made it distinctive then, and which is still the case today, is its wide but streamlined front end design and suspension, which means the E-Type weighs in at a very light 1224 kg.
It also boasts some of the most finessed and revolutionary engineering in motoring history, with rack and pinion steering, and a front sub frame that eradicated the need for a ladder frame chassis that was common in most cars of the time, but which Jaguar ushered in the change for.
It’s lightness, design and engineering all added up to a car that was as synonymous with the swinging 60s as Beatlemania and Carnaby Street. Kitted out with a Straight 6 engine powering out 265 bhp, it accelerates rapidly for a car of that era from 0 - 60 mph in 7.1 seconds, with top speeds achievable of 150 mph.