Me and My Car: Just my E-Type
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Barrister Nicholas Taylor has a passion for Jaguars and Indian motorcycles - here he discusses his 1965 Jaguar E-Type 4.2 Series 1
What are you driving?
This is a 1965 Jaguar E-Type FHC 4.2. series 1, manual, two-seater, with a factory Webasto sunroof. I bought it in 2000, it was imported into New Zealand in 1986.
What do you like about this E-Type?
Its design, shape and driveability. And it is the most famous classic car in the world.
Have you had to do any work on it?
No, I just maintain it. It has never let me down. It is reliable and easy to fix.
Who else drives your car?
It’s easy to drive and forgiving, so all my family have driven it and many friends.
How often do you clean it?
Once a week.
Who taught you to drive?
My mum when I was about 13, on the roads around the back of Taupo.
Any advice for young drivers?
Drive within your limits; and assume that no one has seen you. If you are pulling out of an intersection, especially if you are riding a motorbike, you don’t have the braking power. And I ride bikes quite a lot.
What would be your most memorable road trip in this car?
My first trip, which was travelling to Wellington with my wife Alison to attend a friend’s wedding. The highlight was the tree tunnel going towards Rotorua.
What else do you have in your garage?
A Jaguar 2008 XK, Jaguar Mk2, a 1927 Indian Scout, a 1927 Indian Prince and a 1983 Indian Sport Scout.
What is it that you love about Jags?
When I was born I was brought home from hospital, in Wellington, in a Mark II Jag. My Dad owned 17 Jags throughout his life and he started my interest in cars, and my Mum, she liked Triumph Stags. They brought the Jags and the Triumph Stag back from England on a ship in 1976/77. The Stag was such a cool car; it was the first to have power windows and I used to show it off to my school friends. It was so exciting.
And what is the appeal of the Indian motorbikes?
I have owned British motorcycles before and even though I like them, I think it was the Burt Munro thing and that New Zealand had a lot of the American motorcycles in the 1920s. Even more so than the English bikes at the time. And then the trade tariffs changed and splendid isolationism came in, in America at that time, just likeTrump is doing now. There was a 40 per cent tariff put on all American motorcycles and it all stopped.
So New Zealand has a lot of Indian motorcycles from the 1920s here, and of course we have the heritage from Burt Munro. He has to be admired on all levels for what he did. I like that heritage, I like the sound of the V twin engine, they are very reliable. That old expression they used in marketing: you can’t wear out an Indian Scout.
Does your enthusiasm for Jaguar go as far as being a car club member?
I have been a member of the Jaguar club, but not presently.
Do you have a favourite movie car scene?
The scene from the James Bond movie, GoldenEye, with the race between the Ferrari F355 and Aston Martin DB5.
Favourite race car driver?
Stirling Moss. He raced for Jaguar during the golden years at Le Mans.
What do you listen to when you drive?
I enjoy 60s classics.
What’s a great day trip out of Auckland?
Taking the E-Type down to the Hamilton car museum.
What irritates you most about other drivers?
A lack of basic courtesy and consideration for others.
And if you could change one road rule, what would it be?
That classic cars should be allowed to travel in bus lanes (T2) as they don’t cope with sitting in endless traffic jams etc.
Driving an E-Type, can you imagine one day being in and enjoying a driverless car?
No, I like being in control of my own destiny.
And how do you feel about electric cars?
I try not to feel anything about them, as I find that they are soulless.