At XKs Unlimited, we’re preservationists with a revisionist bent. While we’ve restored dozens of Jaguars back to original specification, we have also tastefully modified many more to improve performance, comfort and reliability. Our latest effort is perhaps our most revisionist project to date. An E-Type coupe’s feminine form is surely the car’s most striking quality, but American-sized drivers know all too well how that shape translates to a cramped cockpit. And therein lays the genesis of what we call the “E-Type XL.”
At first glance, the XL looks like several other E-Types we’ve modified over the years. But study the details, and you’ll notice the additional 2” of head room courtesy of V-12 floors that were modified to sit lower than their six-cylinder counterparts. Of course those 2” required changes to just about every other piece of cockpit sheet metal. And since there was no room for a conventional under-car exhaust system, we developed a scalloped left sill that accommodates a side exhaust. An alloy Le Mans fuel filler cap is neatly recessed into the left rear fender.
The XL donor car wasn’t a rust bucket. It was more like a rust barrel. While this kept the entry price low, it allowed us to showcase the rust-repair capabilities of our body shop and gave us freedom to make some aesthetic revisions. The slightly flared V-12 rear wheel arches, for instance, better accommodate wider wheels and tires and add pleasing visual width to the rear of the car.
The bonnet is an alloy reproduction of the E-Type Lightweight part, complete with covered fog lamps. Our custom one-piece front bumpers eliminate the over riders and are reminiscent of the beautifully simple parts on Ferrari’s 275 GTB. They gracefully wrap into the radiator opening. The rear bumpers, also sans over riders, follow the same theme but were shortened to accommodate the fender flares.
So, we added 2” of head room courtesy of V-12 floors that were modified to sit lower than their six-cylinder counterparts. Every system has been completely rebuilt, restored and upgraded. Many of these parts, from the alloy radiator to the high-performance one-wire alternator and Wilwood disc brakes, are manufactured by XKs Unlimited.
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