RIP Charles Bulmer - the original E-type tester


One of the greats of British motoring journalism has died. Despite a rich and hugely varied career former The Motor editor Charles Bulmer will forever be remembered as the man who conducted the original road-test on the Jaguar E-type, dispatched to Italy to try and top the magic 150mph on the Autostrada del Sole.

Last year C&SC reunited Bulmer with that very car – 77 RW – as well as reintroducing him to Norman Dewis, and we were astonished how humble, sprightly and enthusiastic he remained though just a year short of his 90th birthday.

With memories of that epic test with John Anstice Brown still as vivid as they were in 1961, Bulmer last year recalled: "It was incredible. The performance was out of this world for 1961. I hadn't driven anything like it before and I wanted one awfully badly."

C&SC's James Elliott was so fascinated by Bulmer's experiences that he instantly decided to conduct an impromptu interview on the journey back from Coventry.

To read the subsequent blog/story click here. To see the full story of Bulmer's remeniscences of the E-type test see the August 2011 issue of C&SC.

Below: Bulmer (right) chats about driving 77 RW flat out with Jaguar tester Norman Dewis



It`s sad to hear the news that Charles Bulmer is no longer with us.
It was due to him that I had my dream of sitting in and driving 77 RW
the most famous road going E-type last year for a special feature.

The car did at one point refuse to start (sorry all at JDHT) I ask Charles to sit in the car and leave the ignition on,while I investigated
the trouble,I got the car started almost immediately.Charles was very impressed how I knew my way around the E-types mechanicals.

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