Jaguar E-Type

About 7 months ago, I got a text from an old College friend. Apparently, her father in law was being guilt tripped into liquidating his prized possession to help fund the families dream home.

“Didn’t your father fix old Jaguar’s?” she inquired.

I get so many inquiries about mysterious vintage cars for sale that I have become quite skeptical. Innately, humans want to discover the missing Picasso masterpiece, unearth lost Beatles recordings and become explorers of any valuable object.

This find was different. Unbelievable actually. A brand new, Jaguar E-Type. Considered one of the most beautiful cars of our time, the E-Type had been out of production for 41 years.

Unlike the collecting climate of today’s automotive world, in the 1960s and 1970s Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Jaguars were transportation. Owners drove their cars. They did not put cars away or keep mileage low.Finding a no mileage unrestored brand new Ferrari F40 is not that hard, finding a similar Jaguar XKE is unheard of…

Finding a no mileage unrestored brand new Ferrari F40 is not that hard, finding a similar Jaguar XKE is unheard of…

– John Temerian

For about two months Mr. Kaplan played coy. Flirting with idea of selling the car and oddly hesitant about letting me even inspect the car. It was apparent that he did not want to part with his Jaguar.

Considering my family had owned over fifty E-Type Jaguars from 1961 until today, it became my mission to see the car. Even if Mr. Kaplan didn’t want to sell, I had to see if there was any truth to the story…

Road Trip to Ormond Beach, Florida…

On November 29th, 1972 a young Marshall Kaplan visited Foreign Cars of North East to purchase his dream car, a Silver on Red Jaguar E-Type. For close to $7,000.00 he drove away from the dealership with the ultimate V12 sports car at the time, not knowing that the dealership would soon close and he would never receive title to the car.

Without a title Kaplan could not register the Jaguar, without registration he could not drive the Jaguar. Kaplan was left with a Jaguar stowed away in his garage and a lawsuit against the dealership and the importer.

During the next two years Kaplan purchased another XKE, a 1974 British Racing Green V12 Roadster that he used for hill climbs, rallies and cruises while his 1972 stayed preserved in his garage.

Eventually, Kaplan won his battle and received his money back and reached an agreement with Royal Imports Inc. and British Leyland Motors Inc., the Jaguar Importer at the time, to purchase the Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin, commonly known as “MSO,” for a mere $2,500.00.

Time changes everything. Some of us get married, have kids and grow out of sports cars and racing. Mr. Kaplan now lived in Florida selling swimsuits. He had a family, a small business and responsibilities.

…But tucked away in his garage was his dream car, a brand new, unregistered, 2,000 mile Jaguar XKE. Still with its original interior, original paint, untouched and with 40 years of patina.

Coming from a passionate family who has had over 50 Jaguar E-Types… This quirky story may be the only and last example of Jaguar time capsule.