Examples / ideas for 3-point belts on early '64 OTS, with original "fixed" seats

This is all about safety! After a 3-year refurbish, I want to drive my car, and to feel safe.

I’ve carefully scoured the archives, but I don’t see a good way to add a 3-point harness to my 3.8L car, while retaining an operable hood (convertible top). Either the shoulder belt rides over the folded convertible top (impractical) or under it (even worse). Sure, if I remove the hood and add a hardtop (hah!), I can mount the shoulder belt. Or, if I detach the hood, and stow it away in the garage, ditto the shoulder belt.

I understand the location of the factory mounting points, and alternative points, but they don’t play well with the hood stowed.

Did Jaguar offer shoulder belts with the “fixed”, early seats (half-barrel with no adjustable rake)? If so, I’d would really appreciate a photo or two. Bonus points if someone has found a way to fit “inertia reel” 3-point belts, but I’d even be happy with separate belts.


It’s not that difficult a job. When I had my ‘64 OTS fully restored by Muncie Imports & Classics I requested inertia-reeled, three-point belts. They installed a set from an MG, if memory serves me correctly.

They seem to work fine but (happily) have not been crash-tested!

Good luck,

You may want to contact Phil at Quickfit Safety Belt Service. pawel@quickfitsbs.com.

That looks very nice, however I suspect that the 3 point belts in our cars, FHC’s and OTS are set up such that in a collision they would likely crush/collapse our chests. The shoulder mounting point is positioned to low, never the less I always wear mine and I hope that none of us ever test my concern. JM2CW

I do understand there is an issue with the shoulder strap mounting is it is too low. I do not believe most E types would be too low, especially if using the factory mounts. See the attached information that came with some belts I purchased from Seatbelt Planet. The diagram is a little hard to see all the shadowing.

seatbelt.pdf (708.2 KB)

If you search the e type uk site there is a pretty good writeup from someone who mounted the mechanism in the trunk on the vertical face of the Bulkhead and then routed the belt up and over the top of the shelf. That gives another few inches of height compared to the pictures of the Muncie installation.

Hi Tom,
I sure hope your right but I still have my suspicions about the factory mounts, of course a lot of it depends on how tall the person being restrained is. Additionally I suspect it’s a moot point in that any collision severe enough to test my ‘theory’ is likely going to be difficult to survive anyway. JM2CW

Assuming the 40 degree angle listed on the paperwork I posted is valid, I believe the factory mounts are fine.
I am more optimistic than you and many others here on the “moot point.” Clearly, the E-types, or any 1960’s vintage car is not near as safe as a current car. But, fortunately, people did survive some accidents back in those days. And clearly seat belts and then shoulder harness saved even more lives back then. So safety belts were not “moot.” They were significant safety features. And, with the collapsible steering column and head restraints, the S2 and S3 were even safer yet. Again, these were significant safety devices that saved lives. Also, from what I read, the E-type apparently did okay for safety back then, and was actually easier to adapt to new regulations at the 1968 time frame because of the structure of the body.
These safety features were not there just to help identify the body- they help save lives back then. Even today, with all the sophisticate safety devices on new cars, I believe safety belts are considered one of the most important.

Alan, Angus, LLyne, Geoff, and Tom,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and knowledge. I now have a pretty good vision of what hardware is required, and think the shoulder belt would be a worthwhile investment, even if it’s not comparable to today’s restraints and air bags.


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