Welcome to 365 Days of Motoring

An Everyday Journey Through Motoring History, Facts & Trivia

Belt up and enjoy this 365-day ride as you cruise past the most momentous motoring events in history. Packed with fascinating facts about races, motorists and the history of the mighty engine, this is a must-visit web site for any car enthusiast.

On This Day

Wednesday 15th March 1961

58 years ago

Jaguar’s E-Type sports car was presented to the world's press at the restaurant du Parc des Eaux Vives in Geneva by Sir William Lyons. Surrounded by up to 200 members of the press, the car caused a sensation, and so did the price. At £2097 for the roadster and £2196 for the fixed head coupe, it was considerably cheaper than similar performing cars from Ferrari, Aston Martin and Chevrolet, and was on a par with much slower cars from Porsche and AC. In fact, the E-types was initially sold at a cheaper price than the outgoing XK150.The powertrain, which was carried over from the XK150S, was a 3781 cc XK engine mated to a four-speed Moss transmission, without overdrive. Jaguar claimed the E-type engine produced 265bhp (SAE) at 5500 rpm, but this was – to say the least – an exaggeration. The cast iron cylinder block was actually manufactured by Leyland Motors in Lancashire, a task it had performed since 1948, predating its involvement in the management of Jaguar. The aluminium cylinder head came from two sources, West Yorkshire Foundries of York and William Mills of Wednesbury, Staffordshire. The XK engine was fed by triple 2in SU HD8 SU carburettors. The body employed a central monocoque made of steel, a year before the monocoque chassis made its appearance in Formula One racing. The Bob Knight designed independent rear suspension, and the careful use of rubber, helped suppress noise and vibration. Initially, the car was available in two forms, the roadster – styled by Malcolm Sayer – and the fixed head coupe (FHC), featuring an opening rear hatchback, which also had some input from Sir William Lyons and Bob Blake. The E-type was the only Jaguar car produced during Lyons’ active involvement in the running of the company, not wholly styled by the boss himself. Enzo Ferrari called it; “The most beautiful car ever made!”