By Roy Furchgott | New York Times
When Prince Harry married Meghan Markle, it wasn’t the romance or the pageantry that set automotive hearts aflutter. It was the couple’s Jaguar E-Type Zero, a classic E-type body fitted with a modern electric drive, that caused a swoon.
Best of all, mere commoners could buy one, Jaguar said, for an estimated $380,000. Until they couldn’t.
In late 2019, more than a year after the wedding, Jaguar broke the news: “Jaguar Classic has taken the difficult decision to pause development of the all-electric E-Type Zero for the foreseeable future.”
But fret not. You can still get an electric E-Type, possibly for less than Jaguar would have charged. If you supply the Jag, “I think we could do it for $100,000,” said Michael Bream, owner of EV West, a San Marcos, Calif., conversion shop that turns gas guzzlers into electrically charged chariots. His shop has converted a Dodge A100 van, a Dowsetts Comet and some BMW classics, the M3 and 2002. After working out the kinks on the first E-Type, he said, the costs could come down to $50,000.
“Electric conversions for collector cars are becoming more popular, but owners should approach these projects with caution. The value of a collector car is based on the vehicle’s originality, and converting to electric removes the car’s most significant original components – the drivetrain. In addition, the market for converted vehicles is small because many enthusiasts view these conversions as diminishing the car’s driving experience. As such, doing an electric conversion can reduce the value of the vehicle significantly. Therefore, those interested in an electric collector car may be well served to start their project with a vehicle that no longer has its original drivetrain installed and/or is a model that is less rare or valuable to collectors in its original condition.” ~Eric Hill, Attorney at Rose Law Group