Jay Leno is an automotive steward like no other and few people are as well equipped to handle a barn find as he is. This 1963 Jaguar XKE sat for decades in the garage of a hoarder before Leno recently saved it. The sleek British sports car is in almost new condition and is the focus of the comedian’s latest restoration blog update.
Leno provides these types of updates on a regular basis as he and his team continue to maintain, repair, and restomod the incredible collection at their disposal. This update is a little different though as Leno recounts the story of a local policeman who informed him that a person living nearby had passed away and that they might have a car in their garage worthy of Jay’s attention.
That car ended up being the 1963 Jaguar XKE in question. Not only was it well preserved but it also has just 17,187 miles (27,659 km) on the odometer. That’s not delivery mileage but to look at the interior you’d never know it. In fact, the only real giveaway that it’s not nearly new is the coating of dust on the body.
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Under the hood, you can see the factory chalk marks that still haven’t been worn off. In the trunk is the original factory tool kit along with the factory jack and even the Dunlop disc brake bleeder hose that came with every brand new Jaguar XKE. Even the convertible soft top is in excellent condition. Leno thinks that it’ll end up being a preservation car.
For him, that means that he won’t be restomodding it or restoring it to perfect condition. He’ll clean it up and keep it as a testament to what an original XKE should look like to future generations. Over the course of the first month of work on the car the team has removed the front clip to test whether or not the paint can be saved and to do more work on the engine.
“It’s fun to drive a car as it was from the factory,” Leno says and that’s the plan for this car. It’ll get slightly wider tires, updated brakes, and updated brake hoses in the interest of safety. Beyond that, it should end up as one of the most original and well-preserved XKEs in existence.
Image Credit: Jay Leno’s Garage