The E-type Zero is an electric prototype, but its bespoke powertrain could drive a new wave of classic Jaguar conversions
The Jaguar E-type, once dubbed “the most beautiful car ever made” by Enzo Ferrari himself, is getting an electric makeover.
Yet while the engine might be gone, the stunning looks of the 1961 original are preserved – and its replacement isn’t too bad either.
The new model, known as the E-type Zero, is quicker than an original E-type, doing 0-100km/h (62mph) takes only 5.5sec, about one second quicker than a Series 1.
Inside is a specially developed 220kW electric powertrain, and some of the technology and components borrowed from the company’s upcoming I-PACE electric range. The Zero’s battery pack has the same dimensions, and similar weight, to the XK six-cylinder engine used in the original E-type and it will be placed in the same location as the XK engine.
The electric motor (and reduction gear) sits just behind the 40kWh battery pack, in the same location as the E-type’s gearbox. A new propshaft sends power to a carry-over differential and final drive. As a result, total weight is 46kg lower than the original E-type.
Jaguar Land Rover Classis, its creators, say that should offer a “real world” range of 270km (about 170 miles).
But what’s perhaps most exciting for classic car enthusiasts is the versatility of this powertrain. Between 1949 until 1992, the XK engine and was fitted to nearly all Jaguar models of the period, including the E-type, XK120, Mk2 and XJ6. The new electric powertrain could be used in any of these vehicles, the developers say.
“E-type Zero combines the renowned E-type dynamic experience with enhanced performance through electrification. This unique combination creates a breathtaking driving sensation. Our aim with E-type Zero is to future-proof classic car ownership. We’re looking forward to the reaction of our clients as we investigate bringing this concept to market,” commented Jaguar Land Rover Classic director Tim Hannig.
While the first model pictured here is a prototype conversion of a 1968 left-hand drive model, AutoExpress reports that the company will seriously consider a production run if demand is high enough. But with its looks, performance and an electric powertrain, ElecTrans sees incredible potential.