‘Barn find’ 1961 Jaguar E-type, early flat-floor roadster

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Jaguar
The Jaguar has been cleaned up since its garage-storage retrieval

Sometimes it seems that there is an endless supply of derelict Jaguar E-types languishing in barns, sheds and garages, just waiting to be rediscovered and hauled out into the sunshine once again.

The Pick of the Day is yet another E-type “barn find,” this one a rare and desirable 1961 Jaguar XK-E, an early roadster with the original-design flat floor and welded hood louvers.  Jaguar collectors quest for these first-run models, which makes this crusty relic well-worthy of attention despite its obvious needs.

Jaguar
The XK-E just after it was pulled from the California garage

The car was rather picturesque as found, which is much of the appeal of so-called barn finds, leaving the next owner with the question of whether to preserve or restore.

The Beverly Hill, California, collector car dealer advertising the Jag on ClassicCars.com includes with the ad photos of the car just after it was dragged out of hiding, and some of its tidied-up condition today in the showroom.  So no, it does not include the “original dirt.”

Jaguar
The body looks fairly straight, as do the wire wheels

The Jaguar was recently discovered in a Southern California garage, according to the seller, and is a matching-numbers car powered by a 3.8-liter inline-6 with triple SU carburetors, 4-speed manual transmission, wire-spoke wheels and aluminum dashboard with toggle switches and original radio.

The seller describes the E-type as “a very early flat-floor example with tremendous potential, which is highly sought after and collectible, and an excellent original black-plate California car.”

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Jaguar
A new top seems to be in order

The sleek body looks straight in the photos, although with a few surface dents, and the paint has been polished and seems fairly presentable as is.  The dashboard appears to be decent, although the seats and other interior trim look thoroughly trashed.  The fabric roof is likewise done.

There is no information in the ad as to whether the Jaguar has been started or driven, or of any mechanical needs.  A photo of the odometer shows fewer than 50,000 miles, though no word whether that is accurate. A potential buyer would be advised to check out the car in person to determine whether it’s a viable restoration project.

Jaguar
The seats are totally trashed, but the dash looks decent

The values of Jaguar E-types have had a strong run up, although falling back slightly this year, according to the Hagerty price guide.  Currently, this year and model has an average-condition value of $181,000, Hagerty researchers have determined, rising to $286,000 for one in excellent shape and topping off at $385,000 for such a roadster in perfect, concours condition.

The asking price for this ’61 E-type is $119,500, which could leave room for bringing it back to what it once was.  But if nothing else, it would deliver this most-collectible Jaguar XK-E roadster into your own garage.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

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