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E Type or Mk2: Which Jaguar Is Best?

Updated: Nov 23, 2019

Jaguar is one of the best loved car brands in the world. Its car clubs have thousands of members in the UK alone and its classic models are regularly rated amongst the most desirable cars ever made.

But despite this love-in, there are really two types of Jaguar fans - those who love the saloon cars and those who admire the sports cars. The firm may have strayed a long way into the on-trend SUV market, but for most of its history it concentrated on just those two types. And its fans tend to migrate to one or the other.

And with good reason because Jaguar's heritage arguably includes the most beautiful saloon and sports cars of the last 60 years. The E Type and Mk2 need no introduction - their graceful style has made them genuine design icons. So good, in fact, that virtually every Jaguar since - including the XJS - owes a debt to them in some form.

The E Type and Mk2 came from a time when Jaguar was absolutely at the top of its game. They were made possible by clear, firm direction from the top. Jaguar's founder, Sir William Lyons, had a clear vision for his firm and an exceptionally good eye - he wasn't a car designer but he knew what worked. His attention to detail extended to putting clay models of new designs on his driveway for days or weeks, just so that he could see how they worked in different lights and in real world situations.

Its typical of Lyons' vision that both cars single-handedly invented new market sectors when they were launched within two years of each other between 1959 and 1961. The Mk2 was the first fast saloon, a family car that could accelerate as fast as a sports car and keep up with it in the bends. It delivered single-digit 0-60 times whilst cosseting its occupants in a sumptuous blend of wood and leather. Whether you were heading to the bank to manage it or rob it, everybody aspired to a Mk2.

There may have been sports cars before the E Type but none had its precise blend of power and comfort. Where the Porsche 356 and 911 were fidgety and focussed, the E Type was louche and long-legged. It was poised like a sports car, relaxed like a GT car. Jaguar couldn't make enough of them.

Jaguar's reputation as a hugely desirable car marque was arguably sealed for ever with the launch of these two cars. BMW and Audi may make better cars, but they don't make cars that stir the emotions in the same way as a Jaguar.

The Mk2 and E Type have each achieved iconic status. But which is best?

Most enthusiasts who try to answer that question have driven neither or, at best, they've driven only one. Now you can claim instant one-up bragging rights. Without spending £100,000 to buy both cars.

Our new Jaguar Icons Experience lets you discover why the firm's iconic saloon and sports car are so widely revered. You'll get to drive a classic 1965 Jaguar Mk2 and a 1969 E Type back to back over this 2 hour, 40-mile experience. All for just £104.75 until 1st December as part of our Black Friday Deals (normal price £139).

The Icons Experience is the only way to drive these two cars on public roads for less than £150. Your experience includes a 60 minute country drive in each car, fuel and insurance. You can even bring your passengers free of charge.

You can buy the Jaguar Icons Experience online here. Or call 01527 893733

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