Jaguar Classic is celebrating the race winning pedigree of the iconic E-type by producing seven exclusive pairs of E-type ZP Collection vehicles. These new luxury collectibles honour the first E-types in competition, which were produced under the project name “ZP”. Only months after the E-type’s introduction in 1961, these lightly modified racing E-types designed by Jaguar celebrated their first victories. Each pair of E-type ZP Collection vehicles includes a drophead coupe and a fixed head coupe finished in liveries inspired by those original race winning cars and comprehensively restored by the experts at Jaguar Classic Works in Coventry.
The two inspiration cars are typically referred to by their registration numbers, ‘ECD 400’ and ‘BUY 1’, and were driven by Graham Hill and Roy Salvadori respectively in the 1960s. The E-type ZP Collection feature thoughtful details commemorating the E-type’s racing heritage as well as engineering upgrades and enhancements to make them more usable for customers.
Later in 2023, Jaguar’s SV Bespoke personalisation team will unveil a limited-edition production run of matching F-TYPE ZP Editions inspired by the E-type ZP Collection. Fourteen of these final 5.0-litre supercharged V8 Jaguar sports cars will be reserved for E-type ZP Collection clients, creating an unrepeatable celebratory quartet. From 2025, Jaguar will proudly become a pure electric modern luxury brand, starting an exciting new chapter for the brand founded by Sir William Lyons in 1935.
The exclusive vehicles from Jaguar Classic celebrate an important E-type story and take their name from seven early examples, which were transformed into competition cars. They made their racing debut in April 1961, just a month after the production E-type made its triumphant world debut at the Geneva Motor Show.
Claude Baily, Chief Designer at Jaguar at the time, detailed the specification of these seven Project ZP vehicles only the day after the E-type was launched to huge fanfare at Geneva. Each received engine modifications and enhancements for components such as the cylinder block and cylinder head and the inclusion of a close ratio gearbox.
Just one month later ‘ECD400’ and ‘BUY1’ took first and third positions in the Oulton Park Trophy for GT cars on 15th April 1961. This was the beginning of the E-type’s racing career and a continuation of Jaguar’s racing pedigree established by iconic models like the C-type and D-type.
The victorious Indigo Blue E-type ‘ECD 400’ at Oulton Park was driven by Graham Hill, while ‘BUY 1’, a Pearl Grey example, was driven by Roy Salvadori and placed third. Salvadori then went on to win at Crystal Palace on 21st May 1961. In total, between 1961 and 1964, the E-types were a standout success and achieved 24 podium finishes.
The first of the pair honours Graham Hill’s Indigo Blue E-type drophead coupe. Finished in Oulton Blue – inspired by the original colour of ‘ECD 400’ – it features a black hood and a range of exterior details that pays homage to Hill’s race-winning vehicle.
The roundels on the bonnet and door are finished in white, with matching front ‘lipstick’ round the inside of the front air intake. The motif bar across the grille and front overriders have been removed, in keeping with the original. However, unlike the original which was developed just for racing with no regard for finishes, Jaguar Classic engineers had to achieve a flawless perfect face for the vehicle, and as a result the nose has been meticulously reworked and hand-finished with over 40 additional hours of labour.
There are chrome bumpers front and rear with wire wheels and wheel spinners bearing a Jaguar Heritage logo. To ensure a period correct look for 1961, a beech wood steering wheel is joined by other early E-type characteristics, including welded bonnet louvres and external bonnet latches with a lockable key. The external bonnet locks feature specific ZP logos and are joined by a leather bonnet retention strap. A selection of additional ZP details are visible, including ZP logos on the fuel filler cap, exterior car cover and roof cover, while ZP and Jaguar logos on the rear identify the unique nature of each vehicle. There is also an artistic side graphic on the wing of the car, with the Union Jack set within a silver shield, the E-type’s silhouette and Project ZP wording.
The interior features a uniquely authentic specification, finished in red leather by Bridge of Weir and in-period Hardura trim. The suite of additional enhancements includes a golden growler horn push while Jaguar Classic are delighted to partner once again with master engraving artist Johnny “King Nerd” Dowell. Unique art panels feature on the centre console finished in anodised aluminium with his unique hand-engraved detailing.
The second vehicle
For the Oulton Blue drop-head, the design features engravings of the car’s silhouette, the Oulton Park track layout with a start/finish flag, honouring the first race win by Graham Hill – and Hill’s famous quote: “In a race my car becomes part of me, and I become part of it” and one half of a laurel wreath, again, signifying the original vehicle’s race win. The art panels are anodised in batches to the same meticulously high-quality standards applied to modern production models for a consistent durable appearance.
The second vehicle in each pair honours the E-type driven to victory by Roy Salvadori at Crystal Palace in 1961, following up the E-type’s successful racing debut at Oulton Park.
While all of the original Project ZP cars were based on drophead coupes, the vehicle inspired by ‘BUY 1’ is reimagined as a fixed-head coupe, giving clients and collectors examples of both body designs. Inspired by the original car’s Pearl Grey paintwork, it is finished in Crystal Grey, its name taken from the track on which Salvadori made his first win with an E-type.
Like the Oulton Blue version inspired by ‘ECD 400’, the Crystal Grey fixed-head coupe comes with white roundels and similar exterior detailing, with the removal of the motif bar and Jaguar badge across the grille and the same level of additional craftsmanship to the body to make these adjustments. The coupe sports the same chrome bumpers as the drop-head, along with the welded bonnet louvres and unique side graphic detail. Created with specialists Vaughtons, based in the UK in Birmingham’s ‘Jewellery Quarter’ the exterior badging mimics the appearance and design of in-period racing stickers.
Inside, the ‘BUY 1’ inspired vehicle features Dark Navy Bridge of Weir leather with matching Hardura trim and a Beech wood steering wheel, while the centre console aluminium detailing is anodised in grey. Its design includes the other half of the laurel wreath engraved on the console of the Oulton Blue car. The track outline is of Crystal Palace and text spells out Roy Salvadori’s nickname “King of the Airfields” alongside a silhouette of the vehicle.
Each vehicle comes with a period helmet to match those worn by Hill and Salvadori in the period. They are exquisitely crafted by British expert Bill Vero of Everoak, who has been manufacturing helmets since the 1950s. The authentic and faithful reproductions are a beautiful display piece that can be worn, and hand adjusted for each client. They are provided with a tailored leather storage bag crafted from the same leather as the interiors and made onsite by the expert in-house trimmers at Jaguar Classic. The helmet bag also complements the leather pouch for the vehicle handbook, which is made with the same leather by the same team.
Classic Works Expertise
The ZP Collection is based on the specification of 3.8-litre Series 1 E-types produced between 1961-1964. The 265bhp 3.8-litre engine features an authentic 1961-style alloy radiator with electric cooling fan and electronic ignition for everyday usability, as well as a polished stainless steel exhaust system. It effortlessly blends original authenticity with modern usability and reliability.
While each vehicle has a unique personality and heritage, both feature a suite of additional enhancements from the team at Jaguar Classic Works. These include the Jaguar Classic Infotainment System with DAB radio, Bluetooth connectivity and navigation, for 21st century standards of in car entertainment.
The most significant mechanical upgrade is the specially developed five-speed manual transmission for quieter, more comfortable cruising. It features synchromesh on all ratios, helical cut gears and a reinforced cast aluminium casing for enhanced reliability and durability, with closer gear ratios for smoother changes. Its intelligent design requires no modification to the bodyshell, or any of the other components, despite providing an extra ratio. Maintaining the donor vehicle’s integrity is of the utmost importance to the team at Jaguar Classic, and the gearbox they developed allows the body’s originality to be retained, as well as giving customers increased usability.
Every vehicle is subject to around 2,000 hours of work by the experts at Jaguar Classic, undergoing painstaking and meticulous work with craftsmanship at the heart – making every example a masterpiece. Supplied with each vehicle is a tailor-made car cover with ZP logo and a bespoke jack with unique storage bag to be stored beneath the boot floor.