Jaguar lets public drive its own D-Type

Published: 17 October 2014

Jaguar has been on a big spending spree to bulk up its heritage fleet recently and now we know why. It’s throwing the keys to paying members of the public, with the chance to drive not only a few of its more illustrious road cars but also, remarkably, Le Mans heroes including the C-Type and D-Type.

Called the Jaguar Heritage Driving Experience, the scheme has been launched under the company’s Special Operations banner and the majority of drives will take place at the Warwickshire test track Jaguar recently bought from motorsport firm Prodrive.

What's the Jaguar Heritage Driving Experiencea all about?

Choices kick off with the ‘Jaguar Experience’, ranging from £95 to £250 where you can drive the likes of an E-Type and XK150, or make like a getaway driver (or Inspector Morse) at the wheel of a MkII saloon. Naturally there’s a secondary commercial slant to it too, as Jag is also offering punters a chance to compare an E-Type against a new F-Type, no doubt with a slick sales pitch at the ready.

Things get a bit spicier with the half-day ‘Le Mans Experience’ (£750), where you can drive a real-life C-Type and D-Type (with a minder – understandably, Jag won’t let you loose in cars with the value of a stately home on your own) plus an XKSS, the barely-housetrained road-going version of the D-Type, an example of which Steve McQueen famously owned.

The top-end deals

Ultimate experience (and the most ultimately expensive at £2000) is the ‘Grace and Pace’ package, where you can be chauffeur-driven in classic Jag saloons from venue to venue driving a whole gamut of cars from post-war to today, including some of the recent specials cooked up by Jaguar’s Special Operations division.

Passenger rides are available too, with ‘recognisable faces from the world of motorsport’ on hand, says Jaguar, although just how recognisable we don’t know yet.

Either way, if you’re stuck for Christmas present ideas…

Click here to read all about one of the JLR Special Operations division’s most special operations: building six brand-new Lightweight E-Types.

By James Taylor

CAR's deputy features editor, automotive design graduate, Radical champ

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