Jaguar E-type S1
1962 Jaguar E-type FHC Owned by Phil Bell, editor, (email@example.com) Time owned Eight years Miles this month 58 Costs this month £0 Previously replaced cracked coolant hoses
Sunday morning, crisp, clear and dry. No historic race meetings, concours or media trips to report on. No repairs to the car or house that can’t wait. Too long since I last made it to the monthly classic car meet at The Goat in Hertford Heath. All the planets were aligning, just one more needed – a fit and willing E-type.
Disconnect my C-TEK battery conditioner, slide the choke lever all the way up and twist the ignition key. And wait while the fuel pump tops up the SU float chambers. Thumb the starter button. Whirrurur, cough, silence. Again, whirrurur, cough, stutter, do we have two, three, five, six cylinders? Bliss. As the bonnet edged out into the chill morning air it was already time to back off the lever a little, and once I was far enough down the road to tease the still-cold Moss gearbox into second the choke was done with.
Until the gearbox warmed I was stuck with second gear and an earful of exhaust noise – sorry, fellow villagers. Then the national speed limit beckoned and a chance to guide the gearlever into third with a double-declutch and a 2,3,4 pause.
Thirty miles of testing switchbacks and fast A-roads popped me out at the green fronting The Goat. It was only 11am but I was lucky to squeeze a space in the pub car park. There wasn’t much room outside either as a steady flow of new arrivals stalked the surrounding roads. I was penned in by a Dodge Polara, a BMW 3 Series drift car, several generations of Mustang and a Sapphire Cosworth, then a Jaguar V12-engined hot rod joined the typical random mix of Goat metal.
It was a chance to catch up with Goat regulars I haven’t seen in ages, like Kent who’s just switched from a 3.8 E-type fixed-head to a 4.2 and joined the growing JD Classics empire, and event founder Rod Leach who’s been coming here for more than 40 years. Around the green I found an Aston DB5, a Lotus Excel belonging to Malcolm Ricketts, owner of the Lotus Elan in last month’s Life Cycle feature, a recently-finished Willys gasser and lots more. Time ran away from me and before I knew it cars were slipping off into the afternoon. Heading home I savoured the bright, dry conditions and the foot-roasting flow of air from the E-type’s heater.
So there you have it, a complete Our Cars update free from any tales of E-type problems and repairs. I’m sure normal service will resume soon.
Phil enjoyed his first trip to The Goat in ages No room at the inn – DB5 had to park on the road
Capricious visitor – Jaguar V12 hot-rod turned some heads