Offered for sale is a stunning, restored, heavily documented, entirely numbers matching (as confirmed by its Heritage Certificate), mechanically excellent 1964 Jaguar E-Type 3.8L OTS (Open Two Seater), finished in ever-appropriate Carmen Red over a Black leather interior with an enviable ownership history that includes a string of U.S. Air Force pilots over a vast majority of its life.
Chassis No. 880297 was delivered new on February 1, 1964 by Overseas Motors Corporation of Fort Worth, TX to Captain Arthur L. Nisle while stationed at Carswell Air Force Base. Captain Nisle would enjoy the car for the ensuing 11 years, always having it serviced at Overseas Motors (as verified by a thick stack of original service receipts) until 1975, when he made good on a promise to sell the car to Captain Harold W. McCullum, an Air Force buddy who had just returned from his final tour in Vietnam. Capt. McCullum only kept the car briefly, selling it a year later to Major Robert Isaak, who was also stationed at Carswell at the time. He would later be transferred to Maxwell Air Force Base outside of Montgomery, AL, and in 1979 Major Isaak sold the car to another pilot under his command, Captain Mark Thompson. Captain Thompson would become the car’s longest and most devoted steward, owning it for nearly 30 years and commissioning an exhaustive, concours quality restoration in 1982. That restoration, performed by Jerry Booth of Auto Restoration Co. of Wetumpka, AL over four years while Thompson was stationed at various bases across the country, totaled $40,365.41 which, adjusting for inflation, would be more than $90k in today’s money.
Like Nisle and Isaak before him, Thompson’s pilot’s sensibilities are evident in his incredibly detailed record-keeping, and consequently the car comes with a bevy of service receipts, parts receipts and an itemized restoration cost tracking (all the way down to the long distance phone calls with the restoration shop), as well as all of the original books and manuals, Manufacturer’s Warranty Card, Jaguar Heritage Certificate, complete tool kit, changing tools and the original Thor knock-off hammer.
Thompson eventually sold the car to Geoffrey Reiss a noted Jaguar restorer and sometimes dealer and the owner of Jag Connection in Allentown, PA. It was subsequently traded to Classic Showcase, the well-known vintage Jaguar dealership in Oceanside, CA, before being sold in 2007 to a private collector in Chatsworth, CA. He would show and drive the car until 2015, when it was sold to another enthusiast in nearby Camarillo, CA. Sadly, the most recent owner’s passing has precipitated the car being offered here today.
All of the car’s owners always took exceptional care of the car and consequently, it was an incredibly solid and sound platform for Thompson’s restoration. Moreover, the quality level of that restoration is still readily apparent, as the car remains in spectacular condition, wearing only the most minimal patina despite more than thirty years since its completion. The Carmen Red lacquer finish is striking – deep, lustrous and entirely consistent, marred only by a handful of minor imperfections (a few touched up chips and scratches, etc.), each of which is so minor as to be difficult to see in any of the photographs. The body is entirely straight, exhibiting no evidence of any accidents and retaining factory even panel fits and gaps throughout. The black leather seats, interior panels, dash and carpets show only negligible wear, and the canvas soft top is excellent shape (with a clear rear plastic window), as is the boot cover. The car’s brightwork is nearly flawless, all of the original glass is in excellent condition, and much of the rubber was replaced by Reiss and is free of any dryness or cracking. The chrome knock-off wire wheels are in excellent condition and are wrapped in Vredestein Sprint tires with plenty of remaining tread. As with the body, the car’s undercarriage is rust-free, correct and entirely solid.
The car is also mechanically excellent, the original, numbers matching 3.8L engine with triple S.U. carburetors starting up effortlessly, idling consistently and pulling strongly and smoothly through each of the original 4-speed transmission’s gears. The car drives and brakes straight and true and ride quality is excellent, whether roaring around windy mountain roads, bombing down the highway or tooling through town.
This is an excellent opportunity to acquire an absolutely stunning, investment grade, final year 3.8L tri-carb Series I E-Type OTS with an extensively documented history, quality restoration and strong, grin-inducing performance, worthy of the serious consideration of any Jaguar collector or enthusiast. A pure and sound example that’s fairly priced below Hagerty’s #2 valuation level, this gorgeous roadster doesn’t disappoint, checking all the right boxes.