Harry and Meghan’s Jaguar E-Type EV
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding car was literally something old, something, something borrowed and something blue.
The royal couple drove away in a Jaguar E-Type Zero, a classic 1968 E-Type roadster that has been converted to run on cutting-edge electric power.
The car is owned by Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) Classic Works (which is why it was borrowed) and . . . well, you can see it’s blue.
The one-of-a-kind E-Type was first seen in September last year at the JLR Tech Fest at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts, London.
The Zero is intended to be both an illustration of what Classic Works is capable of, and a tangible link between the classic Jaguar brand and its new-generation EVs – like the i-Pace, which was displayed alongside the Zero at Tech Fest.
Jaguar claims the Zero drives like an E-Type (you’d have to ask Harry about that), but offers ‘‘future proofed’’ classic car ownership.
Zero to 100kmh takes 5.5sec, about one second quicker than a conventional Series 1 E-Type.
It could have been much faster of course, but JLR says performance was deliberately limited to preserve the classicmotoring experience.
The base for the Zero is a restored ‘‘Series 1.5’’ Roadster. It’s totally original in specification, apart from its state-of-the-art powertrain and modified instrumentation and facia – although these are also inspired by the original E-type. LED headlights are also used to achieve energy efficiency. Again, they adopt the styling themes of the original Series 1 E-type.
An electric powertrain developing 220kW was specially designed for the Zero. Its lithium-ion battery pack has the same dimensions, and similar weight, to the XK six-cylinder engine used in the original E-type.
The electric powertrain is also placed in precisely the same location as the XK engine.
The electric motor (and reduction gear) lies just behind the battery pack, in the same location as the E-type’s gearbox. A new propshaft sends power to a carry-over differential and final drive. Total weight is 46kg lower than the original E-type.
Using an electric powertrain with similar weight and dimensions to the outgoing petrol engine and transmission means the car’s structure, including suspension and brakes, has not changed, simplifying the conversion and homologation. Front-rear weight distribution is unchanged.
The XK six-cylinder engine was made from 1949 until 1992, and was fitted to nearly all iconic Jaguar models of that period, including the E-type, XK120, Mk2 and XJ6. The new electric powertrain could be used in any of these vehicles.
The E-type, launched in 1961, is regularly called the bestlooking car of all time. Even Enzo Ferrari called it ‘‘the most beautiful car ever made’’.
The E-type Zero has a ‘‘real world’’ range of 270km, helped by the low weight and good aerodynamics. It uses a 40kWh battery, which can be recharged from home overnight (typically in six to seven hours, depending on power source).
Jaguar E-Type Zero was created by the marque’s Classic Works division: classic motoring with pure-electric power.