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Senior Charter Member
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290 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys, I'm really close to buying a Jaguar XJR (1999 model). I love the car, but I want to know what I'm getting myself into. Does anyone have any experience with these cars? Are they reliable? (This one has 65k miles and look GOOD!) I really love the car, but I still remember when Jags (and all british cars) had lousy reliability records and horrible electronics. Has anyone owned one in the past? What was your experience like?
 

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FFCobra Fanatic
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590 Posts
My advice would be to stay away.

I bought a new 2000 S-Type in 1999 thinking that at after 5 years of Ford ownership the electrical gremlins that had plagued Jaguar over the years would have been eliminated. The first three years went fine. Then in January and February of 2003, the car failed to start on five different occassions.

It went off on a flat bed to the dealer each time (it was still under warranty.) After the fifth trip, the dealer said that "if it happened again, they wouldn't give it back to me until they got it right". In March 2003, I took it to a BMW dealer and traded it in on a 2001 740IL with a sport package. I have been very happy with the BMW.
 

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Senior Charter Member
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290 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Wow, Thanks Peter. I love the car, especially because it has the supercharger and it is so fast, but I do not want to deal with any issues. (Does anyone want to buy an Alfa Romeo 164L I have sitting in my garage. Lol!!)
 

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FFCobra Captain
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3,440 Posts
Too late, once you've driven one you'll always be wondering why you didn't buy it ;)

However, don't buy a pre-2000MY XJR. They didn't use sleeved blocks. Instead a Nikasil coating was used. If this wears unduly you're in big trouble - the engine goes bang...

The post 2000MY cars are pretty special. Someone accidentally ordered a supercar engine for a big comfortable saloon. The quality issues seem to have been well sorted by this point, my colleague's car hasn't missed a beat in 120k miles and, in general, owners don't report many problems.

The early S-types were, sadly, dismal. Ford went on a cost cutting exercise and used far to many bits built to Ford America (ie: bloody awful) quality control standards. The new ones are very fine cars, but they've never really recovered.

My two X-types have never had any unscheduled time off the road.

I don't think you can buy a 6 year old car with the expectation of never meeting any issues, but it shouldn't be the maintenance and reliability headache that their cars once were.

Funny you should mention BMW, Peter. I drove the new M5 last week. At 4000 miles on the clock a trim panel had 'pinged' off the dash ('they all do that, sir'), the reactive seats had broken and the diff was making some very scary noises :eek: OTOH, 0-60 in 4 seconds in a 2 tonne executive car is pretty enjoyable
 

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Senior Charter Member
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290 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks UK_Coupe, you are right, I am bitten. The car is so damn smooth. The smell of that connolly leather and the rich wood on the wheel and on the dashboard!! I'm whipped. I think I might just go ahead and buy it. Everyone has a mercedes s class, and they don't do it for me. You don't see an XJR at every corner (I guess that is why I have an Alfa 164 I'm trying to get rid off now. I bought it because it was different.)
Did you ever get to build your FFR coupe?
 

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FFCobra Captain
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3,440 Posts
Glorious, aren't they :D It would be worth asking a dealer about the Nikasil liner issue, I don't know if one can readily tell which engine is fitted.

If you can put up with an Alfa, surely anything will seem like a miracle of modern manufacturing ? I'm the guy who leased a 166 (I don't think any other sucker ever did, they sold a grand total of 112 in the UK last year...). I had it a week before the TV screen dropped inside the dashboard :mad:

Sadly no lowslung, hard to get into sportscar now or, I fear, in the near future. I wrecked my back January of last year (3x fractured lumbar vertebrae). My barely used Lotus has gone back too, that was heartbreaking :( I'm holding on to the idea of building one, or at least having one built, though
 
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