Make Mine a Porsche, No, a Jaguar
Owner: Chris Scafario
Year, Make, and Model: 1971 Jaguar E-Type Series II Roadster
Location: Cherry Hill, New Jersey, USA
Photographer: Michael Mauro
I found the car parked along a country road in Pennsylvania. I was running late for a client meeting but knew I would hate myself if I didn’t stop for a look. A quick once-over and I was in love and now running very, very late for said meeting.
Following the meeting, I was to head down to Northern Virginia to pick up a 1972 Long Hood 911. In a matter of seconds, I knew my plans had changed. I bought the E-type later that day from its longtime owner and active Jaguar Club member. Since then, I never looked back.
It was obvious that the car had never been fully restored. Some might refer to it as a survivor but I see it as car that’s been well preserved. It is not a Pebble Beach Car but it has been faithfully looked after by its previous owners and always kept on the road in strong working order.
The Jag was resprayed a dozen or more years back but the prep work was excellent and the job still looks great. Aside from buying the car with tired rag top and shoddy seats, its biggest strike against it was that the previous owner had grown past the age of being able to properly keep things neat and tidy.
When I got the car home, I was so excited that I stayed up until 3:00 in the morning detailing it from top to bottom. It not only made things a little more presentable, it helped me to take inventory of what I had to work with. Since then he paint has been very carefully brought back to a rich luster and the original rugs and padding have been replaced with a Wilton Wool set and a more modern heat shielding insulation padding. I have also replaced the vinyl top with what I think is a more attractive, more durable German Cloth.
Mechanically, the carbs were gone through and I gave the car a full tune-up. I also tackled a host of small, preventive maintenance items. New hoses, all new fluids, plugs, wires, starter, and rear U-joints were all addressed during my first year of ownership. As she sits, the E Type has won a few local shows and is a very clean driver. My plan is to use the E-type as frequently as I can and avoid ever taking her to a point where I would need to trailer her to shows or anything like that.
This car is my childhood automotive dream come true and driving it gives me a sense of car-bliss and for having the opportunity to own this car I consider myself a lucky man. I drive the car everywhere and use it as often as I can. Last year the Jaguar and I covered about 5,000 miles. I think E types are great because they can be visceral when you need a seat of your pants rush or they can double as excellent long distance drivers.
If forced to choose the best of my miles driven, I would pick the 4 miles or so that I drive every two weeks to get to the Cars and Coffee venue that I started with a couple of friends just over a year ago. Living between New York and Philadelphia we are lucky because there are multitudes of classic cars to be seen. Until recently however it was very rare to see a group gather in one spot.
During Memorial Day Weekend back in 2013, I pulled some dates together and built my first website, intended to promote High Octane South Jersey. A year later we see between eighty and one hundred cars at each meet. If anyone is interested in our Northeastern spin on Cars and Coffee they can follow us on our Facebook page.
That is why, whenever I find myself turning the old Jag over, to get my fill of High Octane, I can’t help but smile and think of all the friends I have made and the tremendous good we have done in using our hobbies as a center point to support the charitable interests of the sick and needy children in our community.
Aside from starting High Octane South Jersey I have dedicated much of my free time and discretionary income to go fast cars and boats built before 1974. I personally start to lose interest in most vehicles that require the impact bumpers and horse power stealing devices changed the playing field for us motor heads. So besides the Jag in my toy chest, my collection includes Mark Donohue’s 1972 Cigarette Racing Team, Production Class Offshore Race Boat. It’s in as original, excellent condition with tons of documentation.
And, I am just wrapping up a frame off, nut and bolt restoration of what is likely to be the best Marcos 3Liter GT in the country, if not the world! The car is a 1970 Volvo powered US Spec version with an amazing story behind it. It was “the” car that I would spend hours staring at, reading about and drawing in my school note books. Now as a grown up, it is the toy that I get a smile just thinking about!
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