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Lot 207

1965 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 4.2-Litre Roadster

  • Chassis no. 1E 10804
  • Engine no. 7E 3286-9
  • Body no. 4E 1997

Sold for $297,000

265 bhp, 4,235 cc DOHC inline six-cylinder engine with triple SU carburetors, four-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension with transverse wishbones, torsion bars, telescopic shocks, and an anti-roll bar, independent rear suspension with lower transverse tubular links and twin coil springs, and four-wheel Dunlop twin-circuit hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 96 in.

  • Inarguably one of the all-time greatest automotive designs
  • Fresh concours restoration by marque specialists
  • Numbers-matching example throughout
  • Documented by its JDHT certificate


“The body’s subtle, swelling curves and depressions reflect carefully calculated geometries based on the ellipse. The most prominent feature—the long, projecting hood—is modeled with a distinctive ‘power bulge’ that runs down the hood’s center to accommodate the powerful engine. Louvered air-intake panels penetrate the otherwise smooth surface. The hood curves down to a grille-less nose that sucks in air to cool the engine. The gently swelling fenders terminate in glass cowl headlights that are seamlessly encapsulated into the body. The view of the car’s contours is as compelling to the driver as to the passerby.”

These are the words that the Museum of Modern Art in New York City uses to describe one of its larger acquisitions. The sculpture is described as having a “steel body: 47" x 64½" x 147½".” It is a Jaguar E-Type Roadster that has been credited to Sir William Lyons, Malcolm Sayer, and William M. Heynes. No one can deny that their magnum opus, this car, has not sunk as indelibly as the most famous of paintings into the world’s consciousness. The E-Type is, quite simply, one of the most famous and instantly recognizable mechanical shapes ever created, and that is its power.

The design of the car was birthed from the D-Type, a full-out racing car with sensuously curved aerodynamic styling that had achieved tremendous success in international competition. The famous, feline curves were developed by Sayer, a trained aerodynamicist, using wind-tunnel testing and aircraft principles. They were constructed around a lightweight monocoque that had a tubular sub-frame to carry the engine, front suspension and steering, and an independent rear axle.

While the design would evolve over its 13 years of production, it never ceased being as beautiful as when it was first created. It says so much that, when RM Sotheby’s gathered together a diverse symposium of the world’s foremost automobile collectors here in New York in 2013, the group’s members had one thing in common: they all owned E-Types.


The car offered here is a later-production Series 1 example, chassis number 1E 10804. Manufactured in March 1965, its all-important Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust certificate records that it was delivered new through Jaguar Cars in New York to Homer W. Guernsey the following month. The current caretaker and restorer acquired the Jaguar from who is believed to have been the second owner, a gentleman who had acquired it from a Ford dealership to which its original owner traded it in on a Mustang. At the time, it reportedly had recorded 23,000 miles, and in 1987, it was taken apart for restoration. The owner tired of the work, and the project spent many years in storage before the present owner purchased it and proceeded to restore its every nut and bolt to their original condition.

Sandblasting revealed a few delicate areas in the floor, resulting in the owner fitting new floors and sills to ensure a perfect, solid body shell with a fine panel fit. The body was then properly prepared and finished in elegant Opalescent Silver Grey, with each panel separately painted to avoid masking lines. The interior was sewn together in the United Kingdom using correct Connolly-type leather, Wilton wool carpeting, and British vinyl, as original. New six-inch-wide wheels with Michelin tires were installed.

The engine was rebuilt using new pistons, a re-ground crank, resized rods, and new rod bushes, and it was dynamically balanced to ensure smooth operation. The gearbox, when disassembled, was found to be in excellent condition, verifying the car’s low mileage, and was reassembled using new gaskets and seals. The differential was rebuilt with a new, higher-ratio 3.31:1 gear set, improving acceleration and cruising abilities. Similarly, the brake system has new components throughout, including the master cylinder and servo, as well as the brake lines and hoses. An aftermarket alloy radiator and a new water pump with a 16-inch fan were installed to avoid any cooling concerns.

The car is offered with the incredibly rare option of a correct removable hardtop, as well as its correct tool kit, jack, JDHT certificate, and original chassis plate. The certificate also confirms the originality of all of the major components within the car, including, crucially, both the engine block and head, stampings of which appear original.

Restored to the highest standards of detail, this is a restoration deserving of a significant E-Type, perhaps the most groundbreaking car of its era and a design that can still stop anyone who views it in their tracks: styling disruption in its most elemental form.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more