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Jaguar E-Type Coupe Series 1 from Autoart

By Mark Savage
Published: October 14, 2013
Autoart Jaguar E-Type
Autoart Jaguar E-Type
Product: One of my first, and favorite, toys was a Jaguar XKE, a metallic red Matchbox car. I loved it for its shape, long lean hood and rounded tail. It was exotic.

I’m not alone in my love for the early 1960s E-Type. It was a landmark design that stirred the automotive world — and still does. The E-Type was unveiled at the 1961 Geneva Motor Show to rave reviews, and the early Series 1 Jags, made from 1961 to 1968, are noted collector cars, even if their electronics were a bit sketchy.

Now comes Autoart’s long-awaited version in 1:18 scale, and though it will be available in a variety of colors, the review model is a glorious Carmen Red. Perfect!

For the record, the rear-drive E-Type featured a 3.8-liter DOHC 6-cylinder engine with aluminum head and twin cams and three SU carbs. Although it might not seem like much today, the Jag punched out 265 horses and delivered a top speed of 150 mph. Exotic indeed.

Jag’s E-Type delivered both an exotic, sporty look and strong performance, a Jaguar hallmark at the time. Jags have won the 24 Hours of LeMans in France seven times, including three consecutive years, 1955 to 1957. This car carried on that performance heritage but added a luxury edge with a well-finished leather interior.

Performance: Autoart’s Jaguar captures the look and the E-Type’s glamour in detail, as one would expect for a model costing $245.90. Is it worth that? Yes!

Start with the parts count. There are 516 metal and plastic parts here, with more than half of those being metal, plus 24 photo-etched and 61 chrome-plated parts. For instance, all grilles, air inlets and outlets are photo etched, including the radiator.

The stainless steel wheels have hand-installed spokes, and the door handles, windshield frame, wipers, bumpers and headlight frames are all chrome-plated and well detailed to give the model an authentic look.

The finish here is exquisite, from the glossy, silky red paint scheme to the beautifully executed fit for the forward-opening hood, the doors and the side-opening rear hatch. The gas-filler door opens to reveal the chrome gas cap, and the glass-enclosed headlights look realistic. Also impressive is the delicate chrome metal trim that extends straight up the hood from the headlights.

Autoart produces a nice engine bay with proper piping, wiring and detail, while underneath is a detailed suspension. You probably won’t look at either of those too often, though, as the model looks best with the hood down to reflect its sleek lines.

Inside, the black interior is nothing short of spectacular, with real leather seats. You read that right: These are not molded plastic. This is a great talking point when selling this to a customer, who no doubt will also appreciate the finely detailed dash gauges, chrome shifter and parking brake lever.

The car’s large wood-look wheel with its three-spoke metal sport hub is impressive, too, complete with holes in the hub’s spokes. In back, the cargo area looks like black leather, with silver ribs to facilitate loading and unloading. I only wish there were a couple of leather-sided suitcases or duffels back there.

Marketing: Like the Jaguar display at that 1961 Geneva show, your store’s display case will be abuzz with activity once you place the E-Type on a shelf.

Build a display around this model — it’s that special. You’ll want to feature a good variety of other Autoart models (or comparable brands), both 1:18 and the more affordable 1:43 versions. This gives your customers options, so they all can go home happy.

A British car display with other Jags, or Lotus and Mini Coopers, would be one way to go. Some of these also are available as slot cars and plastic models, so creating a themed display is a cinch. Don’t forget the add-on sales of acrylic display cases for die-cast, or paint and glue for the plastic versions, too.

VITAL STATS
Product: Jaguar E-Type Coupe Series 1
Maker: Autoart
Scale: 1:18
Stock number: 73614
MSRP: $245.90
Availability: Autoart

BOTTOM LINE
• Gorgeous early super car
• Superb detail
• Not a Ferrari or Vette!