The Jaguar E-Type Series 2 Sports Car

Jaguar E-Type Series 2 – A close look at this classic sports car’s performance, technical data, features, comparing rivals, history, used prices.

from Classic to Modern

Jaguar E-Type Series 1.5

At the tail end of the production of the Series 1 Jaguar sports Car, around March 1968, between ten and twenty units had their headlights modified by removing the glass cover, and altering the concave area below which they were positioned.

The result of this was to produce a stronger light on these cars that were destined for the UK market.

Since this variant was quite unique in terms of the limited numbers of units involved, it was therefore ranked as the rarest of all E-Types.

In 1968, the US government introduced new legislation relating to impact during a crash, and the control of exhaust emissions.

Since this affected all three E-Type variants, the company decided to phase the changes in gradually, starting near the end of production of the Series 1 sports car.

The first change involved removing the sloping glass covers over the headlights to prevent breakage upon impact.

This was then to be followed by detuning the engine, which involved replacing the three SU HD8 carburettors with an alternative intake manifold linked to two Stromberg CD2SE carburettors.

This “federalised” engine could now be recognised by not only the use of the Stromberg carburettors, but also the addition of a new camshaft cover.

Some of these transition units also featured two cooling fans, and fitting seats with adjustable backs.

Another aspect of the US safety law was that winged knockoff spinners had to be replaced by a hexagonal nut, which was hammered on and off by means of a special tool supplied with the car.

However, regardless of these changes, the body styling of the Series 1.5 sports car remained unchanged from that of the Series 1.

Internally, rocker switches took the place of the original toggle version, and a collapsible steering column was fitted.

Furthermore, the very distinctive starter button on the dashboard was replaced by a standard key start.

This transition period extended from late 1967 to 1968, when the Series 1 was phased out.

Although Jaguar regarded this as just part of Series 1 production, it was unofficially referred to as the Series 1.5. Jaguar cars performance.

The Jaguar E-Type Series 2

In October 1968, the Series 1 E-Type Jaguar sports car was replaced by the Series 2, which was powered by the 6-cylinder, 4.2 litre XK engine, first introduced in 1964.

The federalised engine, with two Stromberg carburettors and larger valve clearances, was still used in US exports but, for the UK market, the original format of three SU carburettors, with narrower valve clearances, was retained.

The headlights underwent additional changes, which involved them being moved further forward, and having the aperture of the light increased, which was highlighted by the distinctive chrome surrounds.

The polished camshaft covers now received a less attractive ribbed appearance. Larger versions of the front indicators and rear lights were introduced, and fitted further down from the bumpers.

There was a restyled bonnet which incorporated an air intake aperture that had been increased to improve cooling.

In terms of the 2+2 variant, the windscreen was re-positioned several inches further forward so that it appeared not as upright as in the Series 1 sports car.

Prior to 1968, non-continuous bumpers were fitted both front and rear, but these were now replaced by a heavier, continuous bumper at the front, and a wrap around version at the rear.

Internally, the dashboard was redesigned, reclining seats were now added, whist door handles were recessed as an additional safety measure.

Wire wheels were still standard equipment, and the brakes were updated.

The steering column, which was now collapsible, contained both a steering lock and ignition key unit which replaced the original ignition switch and starter button positioned in the dashboard.

Optional extras included air conditioning, power steering, and steel wheels with complete covers.

When production of the Series 2 Jaguar sports car ended in 1971, a total of 18,808 units had been built.

Jaguar for Sale

In terms of sales of these Jaguar cars, since the convertible was by far the more popular, then an example in good condition could command between $50,000 and $70,000, whist one in showroom condition could reach as much as $140,000.

Amongst Jaguar cars, the E-Type will always be regarded as a show-stopper, regardless of its age.

This marks the end of my Review of the Jaguar E-Type Series 2 sports car

The Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Sanction Sports Car

Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Sanction – A close look at this sports car including performance, technical data, features, comparing rivals, history, used prices

from Classic to Modern

Aston Martin DB4 Zagato on the Track

Four of the chassis used on the original Zagato sports car (also referred to as Sanction 1) were duly modified to produce lightweight versions that would be ideal for racing.

These racers incorporated the following features to improve aerodynamics: A lower roofline – Enlarged rear wings, with a restyled tail section, and an extended front section.

One of these restyled Zagatos made it debut at the Goodwood race track in early 1961 when, driven by Stirling Moss, it finished in third position, with its arch rival, the Ferrari 250 GT, taking the chequered flag.

However, a couple of months later, two of the quartet, supported by Aston Martin and assigned to Essex Racing, were entered in the Le Mans 24 Hour race, but both were forced to retire.

Not to be outdone, in July 1961, one of these cars claimed the Zagatos first win in one of the races as part of the British Grand Prix.

A further attempt at Le Mans in 1962 ended in early retirement through engine failure.

Aston Martin DB4 Zagato Sanction 2

Production of the DB4 Zagato ended in 1963 with 19 of the sports cars being built.

However, this was not the end of the story. In 1988, having approached Aston Martin, it was decided to modify four of the original DB4 chassis so that they could be transformed into a lighter weight construction, identical to that used in the DB4 GT.

These were then shipped to Milan to receive bodies comparable to those used in the original Zagatos of the early 1960’s, with the distinctive small oval grille, and a smoother, restyled rear section.

The first of these modified rolling chassis was shipped in January 1989, with the fourth three months later.

These four officially approved replicas were designated as Sanction 2 cars.

Although there was little difference, externally, from the originals, modifications were made to improve the handling characteristics, whilst the engine capacity was increased from 3.7 to 4.2 litres, and the size of the road wheels was reduced from 16 to 15 inches.

All four replicas were completed in July 1991, but were not permitted to display the original Zagato badges.

When placed at auction, these replicas were sold for as much as $1.25 million.

Aston Martin DB4 Zagato Sanction 3

Following the sale of the four Sanction 2 Zagatos, it was found that there were still two additional Zagato body shells that had not been used, for whatever reason.

Therefore, in 1992, Aston Martin was approached with a view to creating further Sanction variants.

Following agreement, another two DB4 chassis were discovered, and were duly modified to produce, in conjunction with the newly found Zagato body shells, a final two DB4 Zagato replicas, which were completed in 2000, sporting the original Zagato badges.

These were designated as Sanction 3 sports cars.

Other Replica DB4 Zagatos

By 2000, a total of 19 original and 6 Sanction DB4 Zagatos had been built, and were highly prized, with six figure valuations.

Accordingly, since then, other non-original, and non Sanction replicas have been built, based on the chassis from DB4’s and DB4 GT’s.

However, such replicas did not have the Zagato sports car cache but were, nonetheless, still desirable, and with a ready market.

This concludes my Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Sanction Sports Car Review

The Aston Martin DB2/4 Sports Car

The Aston Martin DB2/4 Mark 1 and 2 – A close look at this sports car including performance, technical data, features, comparing rivals, history, used prices.

From Classic to Modern

The Aston Martin DB2/4 Mark 1

THE CAR

In 1953, the DB2 sports car, the best-selling Aston Martin to date, was replaced by the Aston Martin DB2/4 Mark 1, priced at £2,621, which was offered as a Drophead Coupe, a 2+2 Hatchback Saloon, and a small number of Bertone designed Spider convertibles.

It had an aluminium body with a kerb weight of 1195 kg, and early cars were prepared by the legendary coachbuilder Mulliner although, by 1954, this was changed to the Tickford Company.

By modifying the area around the back axle, it was possible to introduce two rear seats together with an increase in the rear roofline, and convert the rear section into a hatchback.

Additions included the use of a wraparound windscreen, separate bumpers, and raising the position of the headlights.

When production of the Mark 1 ended in 1955, a total of 565 Mark 1’s had been built, of which 102 were Drophead Coupes, 458 Saloons, and the remaining 5 were Spiders.

THE ENGINE

The Mark 1 sports car was powered by the same engine as used in the DB2 Vantage, and consisted of a Lagonda 2.6 litre, DOHC, straight six unit that developed 125 bhp at 5000 rpm, and 144 ft/lbs of torque at 2400 rpm.

Fitted with a four speed manual gearbox, it produced a top speed of 111 mph, with a 0-60 mph time of 11.5 secs.

However, by early 1954, both the Saloon and Drophead Coupe were fitted with the larger 2.9 litre, DOHC, straight six Lagonda engine that developed 140 bhp at 5000 rpm, and 178 ft/lbs of torque at 3000 rpm.

Retaining the same gearbox and fitted with two SU HV6 carburettors, it produced a top speed of 118 mph, with a 0-60 mph time of 9.7 secs.

It used hydraulic drum brakes all round, and there was now a marginal increase in weight to 1210 kg.

The Aston Martin DB2/4 Mark 2

THE CAR

Also in 1955, Aston Martin Launched the Mark 2 version.

External styling changes included the addition of small fins at the rear, different rear lights as used in the Morris Minor, and an increase in the use of chrome.

A new two seater Fixed Head Coupe variant was introduced, whilst retaining the Drophead Coupe, although only 34 units were produced using bodies hand-made by the Tickford Company, which had been acquired by David Brown in 1954.

As part of a special order, three of these chassis were dispatched to the Italian coachbuilders Carrozzeria Touring in order to create the Spider Variant.

By the time production of the Mark 2 ended in 1957, a total of 199 units had been built, of which 146 were Saloons, 34 Fixed Head Coupes, 16 Drophead Coupes, and 3 Spiders.

THE ENGINE

As an optional extra, the Mark 2 sports car was fitted with the more powerful version of the 2.9 litre, Lagonda engine which included larger valves, and the compression increased to 8.6:1.

This enabled output to increase to 165 bhp, and produced a top speed of 120 mph, with a 0-60 mph time of 9.3 secs.

COMPETITION

The following sports cars were typical of the competition for the DB2/4: Jaguar XK140, Maserati 3500GT, Maserati A6HG, and BMW 507.

SPORTS CARS FOR SALE

An Aston Martin DB2/4 in good condition would command in the region of $120,000/£75,000 to $250,000/£150,000, whilst a really superb example would fetch around $500,000/£300,000.

This concludes my Aston Martin DB2 Sports Car Review