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Eagle Jaguar E-Type Speedster revealed

Fri, 24 Jul 2009 00:00:00 -0700

Jaguar E-Type Speedster by Eagle revealed at Salon Prive

Eagle has been restoring and re-building Jaguar E-Types for 25 years. And a cracking job they do. From a simple (no such thing!) restoration of a classic E-Type, to a complete re-build with modern suspension and fettled oily bits, an Eagle E-Type is the very best way to enjoy a real classic.

But there are detractors, who say making a classic fit for the 21st century destroys the car. They say a classic car should be original in every way; ‘enjoying’ the patina of time and the engineering of its age. Poppycock! How many people who live in a glorious Elizabethan Manor House still throw their sewage out of the window? Do our disingenuous politicians still debate their expenses by gas-light? Of course not. They enjoy the fabric of the past with the technology of the time. And so it is with an Eagle E-Type.

And now Eagle has created the first E-Type Speedster, which was unveiled at Salon Prive on Wednesday. The Eagle E-Tytpe Speedster has a glorious body, underpinned by the best on offer from Eagle, including a 4.7 litre engine upgrade, seriously fettled suspension and Eagle’s own five-speed ‘box.

The bodywork has been subtly enhanced, with the screen lower and more steeply raked, with hidden ‘A’ posts. The floor pan is lowered with deeper sills and a lower seating position, endowing the Speedster with a more purposeful stance. The rear decking has been extended and now contours around the seats. All this – and the extensive modifications to the engine and suspension – took 5,500 hours to complete. I guess the new owner – Dr Rick Velaj – who had the keys to his shiny new E-Type presented to him by Martin Brundle, has pretty deep pockets.

But what Dr Rick has is beyond price. An E-type that looks as if it was created in 1964 and sealed in a vacuum. But when you look deeper, you realise that this is the car Jaguar would have made if they’d had the budget – and technology – that Eagle now enjoys.

I’m sure it’s a joy to drive. You’re a lucky man, Dr Rick, to have the means and the style to have this car created. I’m driving a new Jaguar XFR this week. It’s a glorious car and exactly what Jaguar should be doing in the 21st century.

But there’s nothing like an E-Type. Especially one you can use every day.

(click any thumbnail for full size gallery)

By Cars UK