Why is the Jaguar E-Type so beautiful?
January 19th 2022
We all know that famous Enzo Ferrari quote…so no need to repeat it, but it still amazes the industry that the owner of one of the most iconic exotic sports car manufacturers praised a direct competitor's latest offering – the Jaguar E-type. Never initially intended for mass production, the Jaguar E-type ran in production for over a decade, across 3 different models and several racing variants. Last year saw the E-type celebrate its 60th anniversary and what an impact this plucky Brit has had on the industry since. But why is the Jaguar E-type so special in its design, a shape that would inspire years of sports car designs for years to come.
The Pioneer of Automotive Aerodynamics
Firstly, we need to thank the man behind the curves, Malcolm Sayer! A pioneer of automotive aerodynamics, Sayer should be classed as one of the greatest British cars designers of all time, with outstanding achievements that birthed the Jaguar D-Type racer, an iconic machine that won Le Mans 24 three time in a row across the 1950’s and of course shaped one of the most alluring 60’s road going designs of the era – the E-type.
Beginning of the E-Type's Construction
An imaginative mathematician and aerodynamics expert, Sayer joined Jaguar in the mid-1950s, gifting the British carmaker his lightweight aircraft construction methods and of course a sublime sense of style. Although Sayer hated the term ‘Stylist’, therefore the E-type became a child of perfect mathematical calculations. Crafted in an era before the aid of digital design, the E-type is an outstanding design feat, that was given the highest level of detail, going to the extent of attaching cotton wool to the body to track the airflow across the bonnet. With such a scientific approach, it’s hard not to wonder if Sayer discovered the formula for beauty. But why is this 1960’s classic so beautiful? (See our range of 1960’s jaguar e type for sale)
It all comes down to the shape. With many commenting over the year it’s similarities to boats, submarines, planes and even futurist spaceships, whatever it is, it’s seamless. With its iconic proportions of long bonnet against short rear overhang, a tribute to the times, the E-type’s shape lacks the gimmicks and wedged angles that other manufacturers used to create drama at the time. Simple and pure in its design, the E-type makes subtle statements, such as its power dome that runs down the centre of the bonnet adding an elegant element of sculpture to the E-type sensual design.
How the E-type is Put Together
Unlike modern cars, which are all built around the wheels, the E-type is almost designed independently from the wheels focusing on its unique body, with super clean lines, the distinctive sleek curves of the E-type, in both the fixed-head coupe and roadster models, create a bullet shape perfectly designed to cut through the air. With discrete connecting bodylines that join each panel to the next, especially when you take the line that begins from underneath the windscreen, flows under the door window, over the rear arch and fades away into the tailgate, each panel is effortlessly paired and blended across the car.
The E-type design doesn’t just enchant Jaguar enthusiasts, the British build justifiably sits alongside some of the best artistic works in history, next to Pablo Picasso and Andy Warhol in the New York Museum of Modern Art, making up one of an exclusive number of cars that call the design collection home.
Our View of the Jaguar E-Type
The Jaguar E-type is the product of a combination of mathematical calculations, geometric forms and aerodynamic lines to create a shape that rocked the early 1960’s. A car design that, like a fine wine, is only getting more interesting with age. If you are feeling romanticised by the Jaguar E-type, then you’ve come to the right place. E-Type UK is home to Kent's finest examples. Working with these exceptional machines for over a decade, re-sculpting and resurrecting the Jaguar E-type, you can trust all your classic Jaguar needs will be met at E-Type UK.