Meet the Stunning Eagle Lightweight GT – an E-Type for Modern Times
The Jaguar E-Type has somehow transcended the vagaries of fashion yet remained firmly part of the sixties and seventies nostalgia. Maybe this is in part due to the solid repertoire of time-stamped movies that it has appeared in, from Casino Royale to Carry on Doctor to Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery. Yet it remains firmly iconic in its own existence, like a song that should never be covered.
Yet some are brave enough to tackle the potential of negative feedback and cries of ‘sacrilege!’ from die-hard fans. If you tackle this shape, you need to get it right, and Eagle seems to have managed to do that with their part restomod Eagle Lightweight GT.
Enzo Ferrari famously proclaimed the Jaguar E-Type as being the most beautiful car in the known world – though that doesn’t mean it was perfect. The E-Type came from a period in time when Jaguar was treading on thin ice; yes, they made beautiful cars, but these cars were not the most reliable. A point heavily alluded to in the recent series Mad Men, you may recall. I’m sure modern-day Jaguar was pleased this era’s erratic quality control was dragged up once more.
What Eagle has done with the Eagle Lightweight GT is to keep the beautiful flowing lines of the original and added some modern tech to keep modern drivers happy – even if they might be inadvertently aiming their sights at the nostalgic late-middle-aged man. All these good looks come at a price of course, and you will need to have a whopping £810,000 spare to own one of these retro classic beasts.
Is the Eagle Lightweight GT Worth It?
With such a cost you would rightly expect Eagle to have chucked everything at this car, and they have. Inside the handcrafted aluminium body sits a 4.7-litre Eagle spec engine based on the classic Jaguar XK straight 6, pushing out 380bhp and 375lb ft of torque. Top speed is in the region of 170mph with 0-62mph reached in less than 5-seconds thanks to triple Weber 45 carbs. If that’s not enough, you can ask Eagle to mod the engine further – how about fuel injection?
The gearbox is Eagle-tweaked too, becoming a 5-speed as opposed to the original 4-speed. The exhaust is made out of titanium and the engine intake is constructed from carbon-fibre. Öhlins shock absorbers keep things comfortable on a chassis that is actually stiffer than an original E-Type.
The Jaguar E-Type was original designed to be a racer, yet this Eagle Lightweight GT has actually been built as a road going sports car. Eagle has quite a bit of experience with the E-Type too; having started out as a basic car restorer in the south of England, Eagle progressed to tweaking original manufacturer designs in 1991 and haven’t looked back since with a plethora of Jaguar-inspired creations.
Certainly the Eagle pedigree is high, but so too is the price. Yet consider that Eagle lovingly invests some 8,000 hours into each build and has also somehow contrived to give us more space in what was originally a famously cramped cockpit. So ask yourself, what price a completely bespoke (aside from what remains of the donor car), comfortable air-conditioned modern road-ready version of the classic E-Type look?
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