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Would you stay away from a 1995 V12 XJS in very good condition and why?

XJS ( X27 ) 1975 - 1996 3.6 4.0 5.3 6.0

Would you stay away from a 1995 V12 XJS in very good condition and why?

 
  #41  
Old 09-24-2015, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Greg in France View Post
I for one do not believe that the 6 cylinder is faster than a 5.3 V12 in UK spec that is running properly. My 5.3 held in first on the stick will do 0 to 60 in well under 7 seconds all day long, and after that leave any 6 cylinder XJS for dead. I ran a 3.6 for a bit and have driven a 4 litre, not the AJ16; they were substantially less fast than my V12.


Greg
No doubt !

You have 30+ more horsepower than the low-comp North American cars. That's a lot !


Cheers
DD
 
  #42  
Old 09-24-2015, 07:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Greg in France View Post
I also think there is a confusion in this thread between 'reliability' and 'maintenance'. My car has been extremely reliable, but needs careful and regular maintenance, and detailed knowledge to do this maintenance, to a degree most modern cars do not.
Greg

Very true.

And durability is different than reliability as well.

Cheers
DD
 
  #43  
Old 09-24-2015, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Forcedair1 View Post
Actually, the main reason for the 5.3L XJS to be slower than the 4.0L AJ6 & AJ16 cars (0 to 60) is not the tranny, but rather that horrible 2.88:1 final drive.

Too true.

My present V12 project is getting a 3.31 final drive.

But the 4000+ pound curb weight, lack of low-rpm torque, lower power USA spec, transmissions calibrated to shift too soon---it all combines to blunt acceleration.


The three speed automatic continued in the car through the 6.0L models, whereas the 4.0L cars' got the more practical/convenient four speed gear box.

Actually, the 6.0 cars got a 4-speed box as well (the 4L80E). The o'drive 4th gear allowed Jaguar to use the 3.54 diff behind the V12 and still have low highway RPM. This plays a part in the strong acceleration of the 6.0 cars.

Cheers
DD
 
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  #44  
Old 09-24-2015, 08:12 AM
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I could not have explained a buying guide better than the thread by "Luvmy XJ-S". I know of shops here in the USA that have bin in business years & have a A+ reputation that will not work on all Jaguar's (for those exact reasons in Luvmy xjs's thread) let alone a 20 year old XJS. My answer is if "YOU" are not willing to, can't, what ever the reason not to work, maintain, repair it yourself DON'T even think of buying any year XJS 6cyl or v12.
Lawrence
 
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  #45  
Old 09-24-2015, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Forcedair1 View Post
When the guy states “I don't work on my own cars”,



Revealed only after 10 postings, though


and neither has he stated that he’s a wealthy individual (heck, maybe he is…), plus knowing the reality regarding the V12 cost and challenge of maintenance and repair, why is he still told to go-go-go and get the V12 "because it's the only XJS that counts"?


Probably because those who have the hands on ownership experience with the V12 know that a V12 XJS is a great car....and the 6.0 version even greater. It's hard to blunt enthusiasm for a great car with a great engine.

If Terry had stated right out front the he doesn't do his own work and/or that ease of repair and servicing was his primary concern, I'm sure the replies would've been different. Or at least most of them.


What Terry really needs to learn from knowledgeable people is WHY are there mechanics who refuse to work on V12 Jaguars, guys whom I've personally met myself over the years.

No, Terry's not the person who should be advised to go and just buy a V12. That is just not right.

And over the course of the conversation I think Terry got the info he was looking for.

I, for one, assume....perhaps incorrectly....that anyone frequenting a Jaguar discussion board and wanting to buy a Jaguar (or Audi, Porsche, BMW, SAAB, Corvette....) already has the basic idea that these cars require more money and involvement to own and are not expecting the same ownership experience that, let's say, a Honda owner might expect.

I don't have any sense that Terry is a babe-in-the-woods standing at the calamitous edge, needing to be rescued from falling into that abyss of agony, sin, and horror that is the Jaguar V12


Cheers
DD
 
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  #46  
Old 09-24-2015, 11:13 AM
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Well as a potential buyer, I have to thank Terry for starting this thread. I don't think I've read a more informative one yet, and the arguments are exactly what I needed to see. From my (completely irrational) perspective I don't think I'm wrong in saying that if you are going to buy a weekend cruiser/hobby car, there's obviously an allure to having a big V12. Here in the states there seems to be no price difference between the AJ16 and the V12 (from my research anyway) in initial purchase price, and with gas at $2.19 a gallon near me, fuel economy is not going to be a factor. I'm not a mechanic either, but I'm competent with a wrench and a laptop (for help from forums and youtube) so I have no doubt that I can work on them myself but my biggest hurdle is analyzing issues, not fixing them. Thats really the only thing that would deter me from the V12 is its seeming complexity, and just "more parts" to deal with.
 
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  #47  
Old 09-24-2015, 04:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
No doubt !

You have 30+ more horsepower than the low-comp North American cars. That's a lot !


Cheers
DD
Nice info from Greg in France, but those 30 extra ponies won't help Terry from LA/US. In fact, not long ago I posted in this regard an article from the July 1993 Motor Trend Magazine where they compare the 1993 XJS with its "new" 4.0L straight six vs. the outgoing 1992 5.3L V12 XJS. This is what the article says:

"The good news is this (1993) 4.0 liter six cylinder XJS is a better performer than last year's V12 version, anyway. Comparing test data for the '92 V12 XJS and the '93 AJ6-engined version we found the '93 0.5 seconds quicker to 60 mph and 0.4 seconds quicker in the quarter mile (but almost 1 mph slower)".

Then it goes on....

"How can the '93 be quicker? The answer is the rear-axle ratio. This year's car has a ratio of 3.54:1 compared to last year's 2.88:1, with nearly identical first three gears in the transmission, giving the '93 a big advantage in quarter-mile acceleration" ........... "The EPA watch-dogs are placated by an overdrive forth gear (0.73:1) in the new-for-'93 four speed automatic, giving it a taller overall ratio than last year's three speed automatic (1:1 top gear). Such engineering black magic allows a better acceleration with less power, and a 27% better EPA highway number.
Have your cake and eat it, too".

Yes, the 6.0L version was quite an improvement, but the US version 5.3L V12 XJS with its rather poor performance and horrible gas mileage wasn't really something that was too hard to improve upon, was it? I may even consider buying a 6.0L sometime in the future, but a 5.3L? Never.

Cheers,
 
  #48  
Old 09-24-2015, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Forcedair1 View Post
Nice info from Greg in France, but those 30 extra ponies won't help Terry from LA/US.

Why not?

Terry was considering the 6.0 V12. The 6.0 has 60-70 more horsepower than a 4.0 and 30-40 more than the USA-spec 5.3

That quite a bit!

* If * Terry was interested in extra power the 6.0 would certainly give it to him!




In fact, not long ago I posted in this regard an article from the July 1993 Motor Trend Magazine where they compare the 1993 XJS with its "new" 4.0L straight six vs. the outgoing 1992 5.3L V12 XJS. This is what the article says:

"The good news is this (1993) 4.0 liter six cylinder XJS is a better performer than last year's V12 version, anyway. Comparing test data for the '92 V12 XJS and the '93 AJ6-engined version we found the '93 0.5 seconds quicker to 60 mph and 0.4 seconds quicker in the quarter mile (but almost 1 mph slower)".

Then it goes on....

"How can the '93 be quicker? The answer is the rear-axle ratio. This year's car has a ratio of 3.54:1 compared to last year's 2.88:1, with nearly identical first three gears in the transmission, giving the '93 a big advantage in quarter-mile acceleration" ........... "The EPA watch-dogs are placated by an overdrive forth gear (0.73:1) in the new-for-'93 four speed automatic, giving it a taller overall ratio than last year's three speed automatic (1:1 top gear). Such engineering black magic allows a better acceleration with less power, and a 27% better EPA highway number.
Have your cake and eat it, too".

Right! We know that.

Yes, the 6.0L version was quite an improvement,


Which is why many people consider the 6.0 to be so desirable

but the US version 5.3L V12 XJS with its rather poor performance and horrible gas mileage wasn't really something that was too hard to improve upon, was it? I may even consider buying a 6.0L sometime in the future, but a 5.3L? Never.

,

It is surprisingly easy to bring life into a USA-spec 5.3 car. Since you are not a stranger to modifications the notion should be agreeable to you

Cheers
DD
 
  #49  
Old 09-24-2015, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
Revealed only after 10 postings, though

I don't have any sense that Terry is a babe-in-the-woods standing at the calamitous edge, needing to be rescued from falling into that abyss of agony, sin, and horror that is the Jaguar V12


Cheers
DD
No, he's obviously not, Doug, but a guy who doesn't do much work on his car will be forced to depend on a repair shop and such a scenario is not the ideal for a (Jag) newbie and his V12 Jaguar to be in. I don't know how else to put it.

On this note, I always remember a great tip that I was given by this very knowledgeable young Brit, shop manager at my local Jaguar dealer when asked a very straight forward question: "Should I get the V12, or should I just go with the straight six"? (BTW, this was during early year 2000). He responded: "Reinaldo, the V12 is no doubt a beautiful running car as long as everything is working fine, however, this is not always the case. We have the V12 XJS visiting our shop here just about on a daily basis (in the year 2000 there were no XJS' left under warranty). "Conversely, we hardly ever see the sixes here, even when we sold many, many more sixes than V12's by a significant margin".... "If you don't do most of the work yourself, you'll feel it in your wallet, really; just get a nice straight six, of which there are many here in SoCal and you'll be happy".

I'd take my cars for maintenance to that dealer and also purchased a few extra goods there. We kind of knew each other for a while and this is the reason that I valued his advice so much; he probably didn't want to have to face me often coming back with my V12 and get nailed with nasty bills.
I followed his advice and I couldn't be happier with my straight six kitty.

Cheers,
 
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  #50  
Old 09-24-2015, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
Why not?

Terry was considering the 6.0 V12. The 6.0 has 60-70 more horsepower than a 4.0 and 30-40 more than the USA-spec 5.3

That quite a bit!

* If * Terry was interested in extra power the 6.0 would certainly give it to him!






Right! We know that.





Which is why many people consider the 6.0 to be so desirable




It is surprisingly easy to bring life into a USA-spec 5.3 car. Since you are not a stranger to modifications the notion should be agreeable to you

Cheers
DD
"Terry was considering the 6.0 V12. The 6.0 has 60-70 more horsepower than a 4.0 and 30-40 more than the USA-spec 5.3"

You're right, I lost grip there that the original subject here was a US 6.0L car, my bad.


"It is surprisingly easy to bring life into a USA-spec 5.3 car. Since you are not a stranger to modifications the notion should be agreeable to you"

No doubt, if I did to a 5.3L what I've done to my AJ6 engine, along with replacing that dreaded 2.88:1 rear end, it would be one quick kitty, only that I'd still have to deal with the reliability and/or cost of upkeeping of a 5.3L car.
Cheers,
 
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  #51  
Old 09-24-2015, 09:24 PM
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I want to say to all perspective buyers of a XJS that they really are a wonderful car no matter what year or engine you get. The whole purpose of this discussion is to simply point out that the cars are getting older-still cannot believe my '95 is going on 21 years old now-LOL!

I just feel very strongly that all of us who already own and have been around these wonderful cars have a responsibility to paint a complete picture of what you will be getting involved with. When I started out looking for a classy convertible to enjoy etc. I knew with my work schedule and lifestyle that I did not have a great deal of time to commit to working on a fun car-and to be honest as I have gotten older my body just does not do well any longer being bent over an engine or crawling around on hard cement.

The XJS V-12 is the type of car that if you enjoy working on your own cars and also enjoy the challenge of dealing with tracking down issues like vacuum leaks etc.then you will enjoy tinkering on this type of car. I am not disputing that the Jaguar V-12 is a tough engine internally. What I caution all perspective buyers is to go into this with open eyes as to what type of person you are, how much you enjoy and are able to work on your own cars and what you are looking for to get out of this ownership experience.

I think so often we purchase a car like a Jaguar XJS because we like the look of it or think the interior looks cool etc. but seldom do we really think about how we fit the car as far as maintaining it. This is unfortunate because it is only after we have purchased the car are we then faced with the reality of taking care of it and when the car starts to have issues we are either the type of individual who loves the challenge of fixing it or curses the universe for being stuck with a big piece of iron that will not run correctly.

I do not regret for a moment the XJS I choose to purchase and I think a big part of why I have been so happy with my decision is that I took the time before I purchased my first XJS to really research the car and the differences from year to year and then I took the time to figure out what I was willing to and wanted to do with the car.

If I had to share one word of advice to any perspective buyer is buy the best XJS you can afford. If you have not priced out the cost to replace a sun damaged interior or exterior on one of these you will be in for a big shock. Sometimes we think we are really getting a great deal for $5,000.00 but quickly find out that it will take much more then we thought or the car is worth, to get the car to the condition we will be happy with. These are not the kind of cars that do well with cheap repaints or cheap seat covers so do not underestimate what it will take to bring a ratty one up to an acceptable condition.
 
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  #52  
Old 09-24-2015, 11:55 PM
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Originally Posted by LuvmyXJS' View Post
I just feel very strongly that all of us who already own and have been around these wonderful cars have a responsibility to paint a complete picture of what you will be getting involved with.

Offhand I can't recall a single instance when a prospective XJS buyer hasn't gotten the full picture from this group....which has always included a chorus of dire warnings about the V12. The pros and cons always come out in the natural flow of the conversation. It's as certain as nighttime following the day.

I guess I'm not quite sure what you are expecting or asking.

In this thread, for example, the subject was a XJS 6.0. That's a very desirable model by any Jag enthusiast's measure, I'd say. It's natural that the prospect of one of us having a chance to own one be met with enthusiasm. And it was.

As the conversation progressed the negative aspects came to light, as they *always* do when "V12" is mentioned, and the OP eventually revealed that he is not a DIYer ....and that his regular shop does not want to work on that model.

In the end it was decided that this was not the right car for him.

I don't see a problem.

Cheers
DD
 

Last edited by Doug; 09-24-2015 at 11:57 PM.
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  #53  
Old 09-25-2015, 11:02 AM
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In reality, I wouldn't recommend anyone buy a 20-year-old ultra-high-end car regardless of manufacturer, *unless* they were interested in doing at least some of the wrenching and/or the diagnosing of issues.

It really doesn't matter if it's an V12 or 6, a XJS or XJR, a Jaguar, BMW, Mercedes, Maserati, etc.

Things are going to wear out. Relays are going to fail. Contacts corrode. Wiring chafes. ECU solder joints fail.

Whenever I get frustrated, or think that one of our cars is acting the lemon, I just go glance through the forums of other models with the equivalent level of luxury/performance/complexity. You'll feel better, because misery loves company!

A reasonably practical Jaguar at a great price, will tend to be a 4-7 year-old well-cared-for low mileage car.
 
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  #54  
Old 09-25-2015, 12:23 PM
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I wanna thank you guys I have learned a lot useful things by reading your comments. For some reasons I will take a look at that V12 and who knows what will happen.
But honestly I'm a bit disoriented at the moment having seen so many XJS ( online ) calling so many sellers, and test driving a few .
Cars are either too expensive or need a lot of repairs .I found this seller on the Auto-trader selling a 1995 XJS AL6 with 50k on behalf of the owner and asking 19.500 ,really? ... or this one in Seattle with 22k for 19.5 k.and buy looking at the pictures I can clearly see that something is wrong with the car as the front nose is much lower then the back of the car. I understand 19.5 could be the price but the car has to be pristine!
Honest aficionado sellers are out there but hard to find..I may just get a Toyota ahah Corolla that is !
 
  #55  
Old 09-25-2015, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Terry007 View Post
I found this seller on the Auto-trader selling a 1995 XJS AL6 with 50k on behalf of the owner and asking 19.500 ,really? ... or this one in Seattle with 22k for 19.5 k.and buy looking at the pictures I can clearly see that something is wrong with the car as the front nose is much lower then the back of the car. I understand 19.5 could be the price but the car has to be pristine!

If a seller overprices a car, it can sometimes work to your advantage.

The car will languish, and the seller will eventually getting antsy. If you go to look at an overpriced car, have the Kelly Blue Book app loaded on your phone. Then with the seller looking over your shoulder, enter the car into KBB and show him the results.

Tell him, "It's a beautiful car, and I'm interested. However, I'm not going pay above private party market. It's such a nice car you might find someone who will, but if you don't, here is my card and you can give me a call."

If you want to be cheeky, when you get home email him a copy of the KBB value report. Odds are you are going to hear from him.
 
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  #56  
Old 09-25-2015, 03:39 PM
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I've casually watching a beautiful 2005 XK8 with 60k miles here in Portland, go from $13.9k to $12.9k to $11.9k.......
 
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  #57  
Old 09-25-2015, 11:09 PM
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Well said Mac Allan. My brother owns a couple of 1980's BMW's and he is able to have a specialty mechanic do all is work (brother earns the bucks and couldn't be bothered wrenching himself), when he introduced me to his mechanic we were sitting round having a beer and talking, he pointed to my jag and says "glad he (the bro) doesn't own one of those, what horrible things to work on", further questioning and the mechanic hadn't ever worked on one only what 'others' had said. when we started talking talking about what he has to remedy and refresh on the Teutonic wonders its was all the same - Fired and brittle wiring, connectors, hoses, cruddy radiators etc etc. The engine bays just as complex and just as cramped. he actually took the time to look over the 89 jag and stated " oh its just the same as the bimmers, everything has its place" I think its the stigma that Jaguar got during those dark leyland years and industrial action that lead to completely shoddy production in the 70's. I have not been a mechanic nor trained or worked in an associated industry. I bought a v12 XJS cause its what I always wanted. Bought a extensive toolkit at the same time and with the help of this site, Kirby's tome and the Jaguar Heritage manuals been working slowly and methodically through the car, not just fixing or replacing (the rear brake rotors and calipers is first major job I've started) but also just familiarizing myself with the mechanicals of the car. I see it as part of the ownership experience, regardless of manufacturer buy an old car for enjoyment either learn to wrench or have deep pockets!
 
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  #58  
Old 09-26-2015, 12:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug View Post

As the conversation progressed the negative aspects came to light, as they *always* do when "V12" is mentioned, and the OP eventually revealed that he is not a DIYer ....and that his regular shop does not want to work on that model.
Lets be blunt, the problem is not that it's a V12, the problem for a non DIY'er is that it's a 20 year old car. Any car that age is going to need repairs and parts, and that will get expensive and difficult to do if you can't do it yourself. Even the Jaguar dealer here has a policy that they don't work on cars older than 10 years, they don't keep people with the skills and knowledge to work on older cars, and from what I've heard that is pretty much par for the course for most dealers.

Back to the 6.0: I have had a 95 VDP with the AJ16 engine and now have a 94 XJS 6.0. Both were reliable and neither have required anything exceptional. The XJS is my husbands daily driver in the summer and he's not a car guy, he wants the car to start and go. And it does. There have been the odd failure, but most of those were relays for the convertible top or the climate control, but nothing in the engine.

When we got the car it had 78,000 miles on it and had been neglected. I did a major service on it: fluids, plugs, coolant, thermostats, coils, fan and fan clutch and a general going over and I have not had to touch the engine since aside from oil changes. It's at almost 100,000 miles now and runs like a Toyota: drive and forget it.

I would always pick a 6.0 over a 4.0 because the interiors are so much nicer. No vinyl and I really like the contrasting piping. I think the V12 cars were finished to a higher standard than the 6 cylinder cars. They were $20K more expensive when new, so should be nicer, yet today don't command a premium. With the 4 speed and the extra torque of the 6.0 I like driving one better than a 4.0. Passing on the highway is so effortless!

There isn't anything special about the V12 in terms of repairs, it's actually a simple engine to work on. There is lots of it, but it's not complicated; which is an important distinction.

"Everybody" says that V12 are fussy engines that need lots of maintenance etc, etc, but I've never found that in the V12 cars I've had. The older 5.3 eats GM ignition modules, but other than that I never had to do anything than regular maintenance any other engine needs: spark plugs, thermostats, etc.

All the repairs I have had after buying it to do are parts off the engine that are common with any XJS of a similar age, so no reason to exclude the V12 specifically.
 
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Old 09-26-2015, 02:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Dave1109971 View Post
Well said Mac Allan. My brother owns a couple of 1980's BMW's and he is able to have a specialty mechanic do all is work (brother earns the bucks and couldn't be bothered wrenching himself), when he introduced me to his mechanic we were sitting round having a beer and talking, he pointed to my jag and says "glad he (the bro) doesn't own one of those, what horrible things to work on", further questioning and the mechanic hadn't ever worked on one only what 'others' had said. when we started talking talking about what he has to remedy and refresh on the Teutonic wonders its was all the same - Fired and brittle wiring, connectors, hoses, cruddy radiators etc etc. The engine bays just as complex and just as cramped. he actually took the time to look over the 89 jag and stated " oh its just the same as the bimmers, everything has its place" I think its the stigma that Jaguar got during those dark leyland years and industrial action that lead to completely shoddy production in the 70's. I have not been a mechanic nor trained or worked in an associated industry. I bought a v12 XJS cause its what I always wanted. Bought a extensive toolkit at the same time and with the help of this site, Kirby's tome and the Jaguar Heritage manuals been working slowly and methodically through the car, not just fixing or replacing (the rear brake rotors and calipers is first major job I've started) but also just familiarizing myself with the mechanicals of the car. I see it as part of the ownership experience, regardless of manufacturer buy an old car for enjoyment either learn to wrench or have deep pockets!
Well said
Greg
 
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  #60  
Old 09-26-2015, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Forcedair1 View Post
Good Lord, are you serious? That is just about US$1,000.00 a month in gasoline...whew! You must be doing one heck of a lot of driving and putting beaucoup miles right along with it.

Cheers,
Unfortunately Yes! I'm dead serious.

A few weeks before my Car Tax ran out I had a full Tank of Petrol, except that we couldn't go anywhere as it was raining every single day.

Then with only Two days of road Tax left, the Sun started to Shine, so at that point we decided to have two great days out, before I put the Car away for the Winter.

I mean how much Petrol could you possibly get through in Two days?

The answer being a whole lot more than most people think, as driving a Car like this is so addictive, that once you start you never want to stop and so we drained the tank and filled her up again.

During the Summer my Petrol bill is easily 40 per day, so 200 per week is the norm, as driving her economically is not really why you would want to buy this Car for.
 

Last edited by orangeblossom; 09-26-2015 at 07:22 AM.

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