• Desirable and refined Series II model
• Very nicely presented, high-quality older restoration
• Proper operating and driving order; important XKE model
4,235 cc DOHC inline six-cylinder engine, dual carburetors, 246 BHP, four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension with wishbones, torsion bars and anti-roll bar, independent rear suspension with lower wishbones, trailing lower radius arms, coil springs and anti-roll bar, and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes; wheelbase: 96"
If ever there was an automobile manufacturer that applied the many hard lessons learned on the racing circuit to their road models, Jaguar was it. The Le Mans-conquering, aircraft-styled D-Types of the 1950s were formidable competitors and subsequently served as the models for the sleek E1A prototype and the evolutionary E2A racecar campaigned by American sportsman Briggs Cunningham at Le Mans in 1960. From this celebrated lineage, the brilliant E-Type, known as 'XKE' in North America, debuted to wide acclaim at Geneva in March 1961. In 1964, Jaguar’s renowned DOHC ‘XK’ engine was enlarged to 4.2 litres and, while rated horsepower remained essentially unchanged, the longer-stroke engine design provided a significant and useful increase in torque and all-around drivability, while the addition of a much-needed fully synchronized gearbox further enhanced the driving experience.
Development of the E-Type/XKE was also fueled by tightening emissions and safety regulations in Jaguar’s all-important American market, resulting in the so-called “Series 1.5” or "Series 1 1/2" models that debuted in late 1967 and gradually phased in a number of important revisions. The former covered headlamps of the first-series cars were opened and moved forward slightly, carburetors and intake manifolds revised, and finned aluminum cam covers added, while the cockpit of the XKE now featured rocker-type switchgear, replacing the previous aircraft-style toggles. These evolutionary changes culminated in the release for 1968 of the updated ‘Series II’ XKE models. Representing a substantial redesign, the updated Jaguar XKE predicted many of the attributes that were to come in the form of the final ‘Series III’ V-12 E-Types that entered production in 1971 and continued to be manufactured through 1974.
Federal regulations in the United States, Jaguar’s most important market, drove some more of the changes heralded by the Series II cars, including the shift to a pair of Stromberg carburetors in place of the triple SU units of earlier E-Types. Externally, the radiator air intake substantially increased in size, a change masked by larger, full-width bumpers that were matched at the rear to meet new U.S. low-speed impact requirements. The well-proven 4.2-litre ‘XK’ six-cylinder engine was little changed, although a higher-capacity water pump was fitted, taking advantage of the enlarged radiator air intake and better adapting the E-Type to warmer climates. Chassis updates included larger Girling disc brakes with three-piston calipers at the front and two-piston calipers at the rear. Inside, revisions included reclining seats as standard equipment. In sum, the steady evolution of the E-Type/XKE meant that buyers of the Series II models enjoyed a much better, more comfortable, safer, and more reliable XKE – attributes that complemented its already well-established reputation for superior performance, handling and appearance.
This highly desirable 1969 Jaguar XKE ‘Series II’ open two-seater is the wonderful beneficiary of an older, high-quality restoration and it continues to present handsomely as it is now offered. Finished in the classic color combination of Primrose Yellow over a black leather interior, accented by a new black canvas top, this XKE displays very good body-panel fit and it rides on a set of proper chrome wire wheels shod with period-style whitewall radial tires. The black interior is in very good condition, having been recently restored with new leather upholstery and fitted with correct carpeting. Upon inspection, it is clear that the restoration quality is very good, and the highly knowledgeable consignor advises that the performance of this very fine ‘Series II’ 1969 Jaguar XKE certainly lives up to its cosmetics with a strong-running engine, smooth-shifting gearbox, and excellent handling characteristics. Striking in presentation, thoroughly attractive, and ready to go, it is sure to provide a wonderful open-air drive for its next – and very fortunate – keeper.
1969 Jaguar XKE Series II OTS