When it comes to classic cars, a few legends stand the test of time, creating a lasting impression on car lovers and collectors of all ages around the world.
The Eagle Speedster is one such icon. It’s a modern classic that combines vintage elegance with contemporary performance to create a timeless masterpiece.
This review will delve into the unique qualities that make the Eagle Speedster stand out, including its history, design, interior craftsmanship, performance capabilities and driving experience.
If you are a fan of classic cars, please join us on a journey through time and innovation as we unravel the story of the Eagle Speedster – a remarkable symbol of automotive perfection that harmoniously blends the past and present.
The Eagle Speedster: A Brief History
The Eagle Speedster is the brainchild of the renowned UK-based automotive restoration and engineering company Eagle.
Founded in the 1980s, Eagle has established a reputation for meticulously restoring and upgrading classic Jaguar E-Types. In 2009, they took a bold step by introducing a new, limited production model inspired by the E-Type but infused with modern engineering expertise – the Eagle Speedster.
The Speedster is based on the Jaguar E-Type, a British icon that was initially produced from 1961 to 1975. This iconic car was lauded for its revolutionary design and innovative engineering. Eagle sought to create a modern version that retained the E-Type’s timeless beauty while incorporating contemporary technology and performance enhancements.
Design and Styling
The Eagle Speedster’s design is an awe-inspiring blend of classic and contemporary elements. It maintains the unmistakable silhouette and character of the Jaguar E-Type while featuring several modifications to elevate its appeal.
The front end is adorned with a new, subtly reimagined grille and beautifully sculpted headlamp units. The overall aesthetic is subtly more aggressive, giving the Speedster a unique presence on the road. The car’s bodywork is a testament to meticulous craftsmanship, with hand-formed aluminium panels that showcase the artisanal skills of Eagle’s craftsmen.
One of the most striking design features of the Speedster is the absence of a roof and side windows. The ‘Speedster’ designation reflects this open-top, minimalist approach, paying homage to the classic sports cars of the past. The windshield is shortened and raked back – emphasising the car’s aggressive stance.
The car’s rear continues to pay homage to its E-Type heritage with a minimalist yet distinctive design. The absence of a traditional bumper – replaced by a clean, polished aluminium valance – accentuates the car’s clean lines. At the same time, the beautifully integrated exhaust pipes and LED taillights bring modern touches to this classic design.
Overall, the Eagle Speedster’s design is a breathtaking fusion of classic elegance and modern charisma, ensuring it turns heads wherever it goes.
As breathtaking as the exterior of the Eagle Speedster is, the interior is where the car truly showcases its bespoke craftsmanship.
The cabin offers plenty of luxury and comfort, wrapped in hand-stitched leather and polished aluminium accents. At the same time, the dashboard retains the iconic layout of the original E-Type, with its centrally located instrument cluster. However, it now features modern, high-quality gauges and infotainment systems seamlessly blending into the vintage aesthetics. The steering wheel is a work of art crafted from wood and aluminium and boasts the perfect grip for spirited driving.
Overall, the handcrafted leather seats are pleasing to the eye and remarkably comfortable, providing support during long drives. The contrast stitching and fine attention to detail showcase Eagle’s commitment to preserving the essence of the E-Type while enhancing it for modern tastes.
In the rear of the cabin is a bespoke luggage compartment that can carry a set of bespoke fitted luggage – a homage to the era when grand touring was about style and elegance. The luggage set is also tailor-made to fit perfectly within the compartment, maximizing utility without compromising aesthetics.
Performance and Engine
While the Eagle Speedster pays homage to the classic Jaguar E-Type, it departs from its predecessor in terms of performance. Under the hood, it packs a modern, power-packed heart – a 4.7-litre, 6-cylinder engine producing 330 bhp and 340 lb-ft of torque. This engine is mated to a 5-speed manual transmission, adding to the visceral driving experience central to the Speedster’s ethos.
This engine’s power is enough to propel the car from 0 to 60 mph in under five seconds and achieve a top speed exceeding 160 mph. It’s not just the raw power that sets the Speedster apart; the engine’s responsiveness and a soulful exhaust note make every drive an unforgettable experience.
The suspension has been carefully tuned to offer a smooth ride while delivering the precise handling dynamics expected of a sports car. It balances the comfortable, grand-touring characteristics of the classic E-Type and the agility demanded by modern enthusiasts.
The braking system has also been modernised, with ventilated discs and four-piston callipers ensuring reliable stopping power. This is a crucial safety enhancement, especially given the car’s significant performance boost compared to its classic predecessor.
Driving the Eagle Speedster is an experience like no other. It captures the essence of classic sports car motoring, offering a blend of open-top freedom and exhilarating performance.
The engine’s power delivery is smooth and linear, and the manual transmission allows for complete control over gear changes. The Speedster’s throttle response is immediate, and the exhaust note is a sonorous symphony that echoes the golden era of motoring.
The lightweight aluminium chassis and suspension tuning result in agile handling, making the Speedster a valid driver’s car. It’s equally at home cruising along coastal roads or carving through twisty mountain passes. The Speedster feels like an extension of the driver, responding precisely to steering inputs and delivering a level of engagement that’s hard to find in many modern cars.
While its top speed is impressive, it’s the way the Speedster behaves at more moderate speeds that is genuinely endearing. The car’s suspension soaks up road imperfections, providing a comfortable ride, and the refined cabin offers excellent wind protection, even with the roof down.
Pricing and Availability
As a limited-production, handcrafted sports car, the Eagle Speedster is a rare and exclusive gem. Prices for the Speedster vary based on customisation options and build specifications. Generally, it’s safe to say that it falls in the high-end luxury sports car category.
Eagle produces a limited number of Speedsters each year, ensuring that each unit receives the utmost attention to detail and quality. Due to its exclusivity, acquiring one may require some patience, but the experience of owning and driving this automotive masterpiece is well worth the wait.
It’s also important to note that the Eagle Speedster retains its value exceptionally well, making it a sound investment for collectors and enthusiasts.
In a world where automotive technology and design are constantly evolving, the Eagle Speedster is a timeless testament to the enduring allure of classic motoring.
This modern classic masterpiece seamlessly fuses the grace and elegance of the legendary Jaguar E-Type with contemporary power, performance and luxury. Its captivating design, meticulous craftsmanship and exhilarating driving experience are a true celebration of the art of automotive engineering.
The Eagle Speedster not only pays homage to the past but enriches the present, inviting us to relish the open road with the wind in our hair and the echoes of the golden era of motoring in our hearts.
Ultimately, it’s evident that the Eagle Speedster isn’t just a car; it’s a rolling piece of art, a symphony of design and performance, a time machine that lets us experience the past in the present, and a reminder that some classics never fade; they just get better with age.