Jaguar recently unveiled what could be the most important vehicle it has made at its Classic Motor Cars workshops located in Bridgnorth, Shropshire. The brand has managed to restore the Low Drag lightweight E-type, the one and only factory model.
In what can be said as one of the world’s most complex restorations, it took a total of 7,000 hours of work before being finally unveiled to a group of at least 300 guests. It was back in 1964, during the Montlhery circuit, when the Lindner Nocker E-type crashed and became badly damaged that many thought that getting it completely restored would be impossible. Around 47 years since that time, not only was the same car restored but it was also done using at least 90% of its original parts. The restoration work was conducted four years ago by Peter Neumark under CMC, his Classic Motor Car business, in Bridgnorth.
A number of people have said that restoration was not possible considering that many parts like the body panels could not be used since they were all bent beyond recognition. This did not deter Neumark as he gathered a team composed of dedicated restorers with the goal of putting back the car into the same condition it was in before that fateful crash. The work on restoring the body took 5,000 hours. While the original crashed monocoque was believed to have been very hard to restore especially during the 1970s, the team divided it into its individual panels. After that, each panel was flattened, then repaired, and finally reformed to its former shape.
It was then that the structure was riveted and the spot welded together, which was the original method used in its construction. In order to restore the car to its original glory, the team was aided by none other than the family of Peter Lindner, the same driver who had died when that crash occurred back in 1964. Lindner’s family provided not just photographs of the car but even cine footage. Special thanks is given to Peter Wilson for his help, considering he was also the one who had worked under the Competition Department in 1964 and even worked on the car itself during the time.
Special praise is also given to CMC’s Andrew Turvey, who made sure that each part of the car followed the original specifications. The amount of work done shows just how important this particular model is. It was one of the 12 lightweight E-Types that Jaguar made in 1963 before being returned to Browns Lane, Coventry, in 1964. While preparing to make it the unofficial entry of the brand for Le Mans on that same year, Malcolm Sayer made sure to design a low drag body.
He even worked on the engine to make sure that it would be the Competition Department’s most powerful Jaguar yet. It is also the last competition car made by the Browns Lane facility. As such, it is more than fitting that its reinstatement would occur on its 50th anniversary. There are already invitations for it to be shown at different car events set to happen around the world. However even before it is set to be displayed in Italy, and after that America, it will still be unveiled in Bridgnorth before the media. Scheduled to take part in this unveiling is the brand’s well-known test driver, Norman Dewis. Also taking part is Lindner’s nephew Tomas Fritz.
Of course, the person responsible for discovering the crashed version in a garage ten years after it was nearly decimated will be attending as well. Patrick Lansard will be accompanied by the team that worked on the restoration. Classic Motor Cars Chairman Peter Neumark shared that he considers it as one of the world’s best major restorations as a number of people had said it was not possible but they have now been proven wrong.