Every so often, you hear a heartwarming story about the long-lost pet that found its way home or the wedding ring that magically turned up on the nightstand. Ivan Schneider may have the most iconic lost and found tale of them all. His Jaguar E-Type was stolen nearly 50 years ago. Whether it was chance, circumstance, or a just plain miracle, that Jaguar E-Type found its way back home.
An unforgivable theft in the 1960s
It was May 13, 1968, when Ivan Schneider’s brand-new Jaguar XKE roadster vanished. Jaguar shared the story of how the then 36-year-old trial attorney thought for sure his beloved car was gone for good.
He had just won a big case and decided to reward himself by purchasing this 1967 Jaguar E-Type convertible. Schneider was devastated when his beloved British car disappeared from outside his Manhattan apartment. And for the years that followed, he would retell the story of his Jaguar purchase and theft every time he bought a new car again.
How much was this Jaguar E-Type worth?
Ivan Schneider’s Jaguar E-Type was once considered to be among the most beautiful cars ever made. And when Schneider bought his, he handed over about $15,000 to drive it home. In terms of today’s value, according to classic car guides, NBC Los Angeles reported the 4.2-liter engine convertible is worth more than $112,000.
This Jaguar model was incredibly popular here in the U.S. when it arrived. Enthusiasts knew it as the XKE, and they appreciated its sleek and sporty design, complete with that signature long hood. In the ’90s, even the New York Museum of Modern Art recognized the design innovation of the XKE and added one to its collection.
The Jaguar E-Type’s astounding recovery
Ivan Schneider is now 82 and living his best life in Miami Beach, Florida. It was then he heard the news that his beloved Jaguar, which had been stolen so many years ago, had been recovered. A customs agent made the call after finding the exact car in a shipping container in LA, bound for the Netherlands. Jaguar’s media site recalls Schneider’s excitement at the proposition of sitting behind the wheel again, almost five decades after it disappeared.
What lessons collectors can learn from this 46-year-old tale
If you can imagine the great wide smile on an 82-year-old man who found his long-lost, stolen convertible. His story can offer a few lessons to other classic car collectors, too. It demonstrates that even thieves can have an appreciation for an iconic Jaguar E-Type. It also suggests to anyone having been a victim of theft not to give up hope.
It perhaps taught Jaguar to help Jaguar owners with ways to find their stolen rides. The automaker offers a Stolen Vehicle Locator service that ties into the Jaguar InControl system. If you own a newer model with this feature, and you believe your car has been stolen, you’ll have three easy steps to recovering your vehicle.
According to Jaguar, you can contact the police to file a report. Secondly, you connect with the Stolen Vehicle Monitoring Center in the Jaguar app to share the police report number with the team. Together, the two can precisely pinpoint the location of your vehicle.
Ivan Schneider’s story offers hope and a happy ending. So, if you’re in the Miami Beach area, and you see an 80-something-year-old retired lawyer tooling around in a 1967 Jaguar E-Type, you’ll be witnessing sheer happiness and gratitude.