I guess manufacturers were listening to all the petrolheads, particularly the wealthy ones, who would keep yearning about the performance cars from the old days. About a week after Aston Martin announced they’ll be selling a handful of freshly built DB5’s with gadgets from the Bond film, Jaguar Land Rover Classic has confirmed that there will be a production model for an all-electric Jaguar E-Type.
The 25 new James Bond DB5s will not be road-legal and they are expected to have a tweaked version of the original 4.0-litre straight-six engine that produced 282bhp and 380Nm of torque. However, Jag’s icon from the 60’s will be brought up to speed and mechanically converted to run on battery power instead.
This new E-Type Zero will also be road-legal with tech inspired by the I-Pace and with a tailor-made conversion at Jaguar Land Rover’s Classic Works facility in Coventry. Should anyone feel brave enough, they can have their existing E-Type converted too with the change being fully reversible.
While the concept from last year was revealed to have around 300bhp, over 270km of range from a 40kWh battery and a 0-100kph time of 5.5 seconds, the official tech specs of the production model are yet to be declared. Jaguar does say that the driving feel should be the same as the original E-Type as the batteries and motor will slot into the gaps meant for the original engine and gearbox. Even the weight distribution, suspension and brakes are unchanged. All the visual differences will be under the hood, in the cockpit and the plug-in charger where the petrol pump used to go.
Unveiled at Pebble Beach during Monterey Car Week California, the E-Type Zero is confirmed for production and orders are being taken but there is no word on price but I expect it to be six-figures in British pounds. Deliveries are expected to begin in the summer of 2020.
Tim Hannig, Jaguar Land Rover Classic Director commented: “We’ve been overwhelmed by the positive reaction to the Jaguar E-type Zero concept. Future-proofing the enjoyment of classic car ownership is a major stepping stone for Jaguar Classic. E-type Zero showcases the incredible heritage of the E-type, and the expertise and craftsmanship at Classic Works, while demonstrating Jaguar Land Rover’s dedication to creating zero emission vehicles across every part of the business, including Jaguar Classic.”
The debate on electric vehicles being the answer to our environmental woes continues but it is the path that manufacturers have chosen for now and it has led to this — taking some of the best looking cars in their history and redoing the insides to make them quiet and emission-free. Some scream that this is sacrilegious and would like to be left to their whining and reminiscing of the cars gone by rather than watching them be turned into something quite different. But there are others who agree that this is perhaps the best way to enjoy parts of the past while still thinking of the future, by bringing back the classic designs.
Which side of the debate are you on? Share your thoughts on the Jaguar E-Type Zero in the comments below and don’t forget to subscribe for all the latest updates to come.