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What is it which makes the X100 so unreliable?

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XK8 / XKR ( X100 ) 1996 - 2006

What is it which makes the X100 so unreliable?

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Old 02-09-2018, 08:32 AM
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Default What is it which makes the X100 so unreliable?

Horror stories about Jaguars have circled around for as long as Maserati's. But in the case of the X100, what is it which makes it so unreliable and gives it such a bad reputation? Is it the engine reliability? The electrics? The electronics? Body rust?

I have always loved the shape of the car and I like the Jaguar brand. What has always kept me away was the auto transmission and the horror stories and jokes "if you can't afford a new one you can't afford a used one". For the auto box there seems to be a solution. But I don't want to buy a car, go through the trouble of a manual conversion, just to have to be constantly working on the car just to keep it on the road, because of poor reliability. I want to drive it! And possibly make it my daily driver. If I convert one to manual it will be a keeper. Not selling it anymore. So I want to put 300K miles or something.

I understand some in the U.S. do a Corvette V8 engine swap with a manual transmission exactly because of poor reliability. But I think this defeats the purpose. You no longer have a real Jaguar then. So this would be my very last resort and to be honest before I would do that I would just probably buy something else.Besides this would only solve problems if the issue is only the engine and gearbox. If it's electrics, electronics, rust etc, you would still suffer a pity while driving a fake Jaguar around.

So what is it which makes the X100 so unreliable? I would prefer hearing from former owners as current owners tend to be protective and just cover things up. Had bad experiences before with other cars in believing forum owners saying the reports were exaggerated and the cars were very reliable. I then bought the cars just to find out they were as much or a bigger piece of s. than everybody said and totally deserved the bad reputation they had. Former owners tend to be more realistic about the cars.
 

Last edited by GGG; 02-10-2018 at 04:25 AM. Reason: Typo in thread title
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Old 02-09-2018, 08:57 AM
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It's mostly lack of upkeep and not doing upgrades. The systems improved over the years and the 4.2 is much more reliable.
But parts like water pumps, plastic cooling system components and hoses have to be replaced periodically. It's no different than my BMW in that respect.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 10:04 AM
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Yep, the 4.2 versions can be quite reliable as long as you keep up with the maintenance. All vehicles have their inherent flaws and the XK8 is no different. The key is to rectify the known flaws (well-documented here on the forum) and then maintain the car as required. We have owned my wife's 2006 XK8 for more than six years now, it is her daily driver, and it remains her favorite vehicle of all she has owned during her 48-plus years of driving. But I do not recommend it for anyone who cannot DIY the majority of their maintenance and repairs because if you must pay someone else to keep it in roadworthy condition for you, it can indeed chew through a checkbook in short order....

And contrary to what you state in your initial post above, most of the current owners here do not "cover things up". We report our problems and concerns, seek help in addressing them, and thank those who provide the advice and direction we need. This is a great forum in that respect, and I would not keep our two Jaguars without the kind assistance of this forum's members....
 

Last edited by Jon89; 02-09-2018 at 10:13 AM.
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Old 02-09-2018, 10:18 AM
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I would tell you my experience but you wouldn't believe me.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 10:34 AM
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Mine is a 1997 XK8 daily driver. I bought new and have over 112,000 miles. I have driven it from Washington to Michigan and from Wisconsin to Nevada and loved every minute on the open road.
Jaguar is a complicated modern beautiful road machine. The biggest downfall for owners is: Not doing the maintenance until it snow ***** to a very large repair bill.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 11:30 AM
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"What is it which makes the X100 so unrelaible?" is a sweeping generalisation.

The original X100s had many problems which were solved over the model years, with the nikasil engines phased out in 2000 and the plastic timing tensioners replaced by the latest versions on the last of the 4.0 cars (and these can be retro-fitted to any 4.0 engine).

The gearbox problems with the 5 speed ZF autobox were common to all cars fitted with that box, including BMWs of the same era. Get a car with the Mercedes 5 speed (4.0 XKR) or the later ZF 6 speed and you will have an auto gearbox as reliable as any other on the the market.


The common problems are well documented on this forum and most of them aren't difficult or expensive to fix, but even the youngest X100s are 12 years old now, so you can expect the same kind of problems that any 12+ year car will suffer from, including rust.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 11:41 AM
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Mine is 2001 and I have owned it for 7 years. I tend to use it only for longer trips, but these have included trips around Europe and last week covered 600 miles in winter weather (see separate thread: https://www.jaguarforums.com/forum/x...winter-196251/ )


Mechanically the car has been reliable, although I have had to replace the fuel pump, thermostat, one knock sensor, one wheel sensor and the interior headlining. The biggest issue in the UK is rust due the amount of salt we put on the roads. I have had to have extensive surgery on the rear arches, but it is all now protected with wax, which should help preserve it. When I bought the car, I expected big bills, but have been pleasantly surprised. However, I use a good independent mechanic and have never used a main dealer.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 01:00 PM
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I think these cars are as reliable as many other types I have owned. Actually more reliable than some.
You have to use common sense and keep them well maintained. Mine starts first time every time (touch wood etc)
It is 15 years old. Done 144,000 miles and looks as good as it did coming out of the factory.

You can click on photo for larger image.

 
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Old 02-09-2018, 01:16 PM
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I have 2004 XK8 with over 180,000 km on. ZERO problems other than regular required maintenance on a 14 year old high mileage vehicle. Jags are just as reliable as BMWs, Mercs etc...but the Germans just advertise better
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 03:30 PM
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I'm celebrating 6 years with my 2000 XK8 - Mistress Betty - as my daily driver approaching 170k miles on her (91000miles when I purchased her). Yep I had a transmission rebuilt and a few hoses leak but for her age - she still turns heads and gets me where I need to go in style!
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 03:31 PM
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Your post reminds me of an Irish joke l heard years ago.
A traveller who had lost his way approached a local in a rural setting and asked how to get to Dublin only to be told "if l was going to Dublin l wouldn't be starting from here".
I don't see a happy ending if you begin your Jaguar experience with not only the question "why are they so unreliable" but apparently the belief in that statement and disbelief in anything contrary coming from current owners.
If l generalise myself ( as a current owner my opinion may not be valid) l would say that they are just as reliable as any other car on the road but just as likely to break down as any other. Their lack of value, particularly in the US, may lead to less maintenance by owners that then snowballs into increased likeliood of breakdown but that problem is not Jaguar specific.
 

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Old 02-09-2018, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeagar View Post
Horror stories about Jaguars have circled around for as long as Maserati's. But in the case of the X100, what is it which makes it so unreliable and gives it such a bad reputation? Is it the engine reliability? The electrics? The electronics? Body rust?

I have always loved the shape of the car and I like the Jaguar brand. What has always kept me away was the auto transmission and the horror stories and jokes "if you can't afford a new one you can't afford a used one". For the auto box there seems to be a solution. But I don't want to buy a car, go through the trouble of a manual conversion, just to have to be constantly working on the car just to keep it on the road, because of poor reliability. I want to drive it! And possibly make it my daily driver. If I convert one to manual it will be a keeper. Not selling it anymore. So I want to put 300K miles or something.

I understand some in the U.S. do a Corvette V8 engine swap with a manual transmission exactly because of poor reliability. But I think this defeats the purpose. You no longer have a real Jaguar then. So this would be my very last resort and to be honest before I would do that I would just probably buy something else.Besides this would only solve problems if the issue is only the engine and gearbox. If it's electrics, electronics, rust etc, you would still suffer a pity while driving a fake Jaguar around.

So what is it which makes the X100 so unreliable? I would prefer hearing from former owners as current owners tend to be protective and just cover things up. Had bad experiences before with other cars in believing forum owners saying the reports were exaggerated and the cars were very reliable. I then bought the cars just to find out they were as much or a bigger piece of s. than everybody said and totally deserved the bad reputation they had. Former owners tend to be more realistic about the cars.
You keep spreading that rumour and one day I might be able to afford a Ftype. I have a 2004 XK8 convertible and a 2008 4.2 Stype for a winter beater. Both cars are over 180,000 Km. I do regular maintence, have looked after the known issues and am just as confident to drive either one of them cross country tomorrow. The reliability myths are carry overs from 30 years ago told at the lunch room table by guys that could never afford them but looked twice everytime one went by. I do tell anyone who asks don't look at them if you don't have some basic mechanical skills, but that is the same with any 15-20 year old that was a niche car.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 04:31 PM
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Smile Jeagar! I' a former Owner of 3 XKR's!

Jeagar,
As I said above, I'm the former Owner of a 1998 4.0 XK Coupe, a 2000 4.0 XKR Coupe and a 2003 4.2 XKR Coupe......The only problem I've had with those 3 Coupes was the timing chain adjusters on the 1998 Coupe. But that was the Jaguar Engineers' fault......

My current 2005 XKR Coupe has had some problems, as it was treated very badly by it's former Owner and because of that I have had some Major Problems that were basically solved at 53,000 Miles....These problems would never have happened if the Car had been reasonably cared for.....It now has 93,000 Miles! That's 40,000 miles without any real problems with the exception of the Fuel Pump....Apparently Jaguar has bought some bad Fuel Pumps from a Supplier and they don't hold pressure....At least they didn't charge me for a replacement. So, after over 5 years as my Daily Driver I'd say only a couple of things really made me mad.... which were quickly repaired. The only real "Bitch" I have is that it took so long to determine what the problem was.....I sorta had to run it until it broke! before I knew what was wrong! Anyway, I love the XKR Coupe! Most Beautiful Car around!

I've owned 3 Corvettes over the years.....Always had some problem or another.....over and over again....

I'm staying with the XKR Coupe...

Billy Clyde in Houston
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 04:32 PM
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Well, no former owners so far. But thanks for all who replied. You will have to forgive me for being pessimistic about enamored current owner's opinions. But I have been burned twice by that. The problem I see is the several times mentioned "with proper regular maintenance" and the variations of that statement. This is a loaded statement. Does it mean being under your Jaguar every other weekend repairing something? Because this is exactly what burned me before. Of course if you repair everything that brakes the car will stay on the road, at much cost. But that doesn't mean the car is reliable. It just mean you love it enough to put up with it. Regular maintenance does not mean regular repairs. Very different thing.

And about the age excuse, again in my experience is just that, an excuse. For example we have been running 2002 Vauxhall Astras as company cars which was bought new and still have it after 16 years. We had basically ZERO problems with that. The only major repairs was a fuel pump replacement on one and a alternator in another. That's it! They have done over 160k so far. Nothing else besides consumables like brake pads, tires, AC refill and the like. This year passed MOT straight. 2015 as well. 2016 they asked to replace the tires on one. And we literally just put petrol and drive. It's serviced once a year before going to MOT and it's no repairs. Just real regular maintenance, which means checking brakes, checking dumpers, checking muffler and exhaust etc, and replacing those if needed etc. After 15 years of use, including in winter, as they are used year round, one developed a small rust bubble behind the rear door on the passenger's side. This was the only other repair. But after 15 years! This is what I call trouble free. And the cars keep on giving and on surprising. This is the reason it is still in service. Why sell them for peanuts when the cars work great, pass MOTs straight up and are so cheap to run? Before buying I heard all sorts of bad things about Vauxhall. But was pleasantly surprised. This is part of what made me believe the other cars with bad reps might also be good and have unfair reputations. But those deserved the bad reputation and more and I will never had that brand again.

Now I'm not suggesting a Jaguar should be as cheap to run as a Vauxhall. But it could at least be as reliable as it costs a lot more. And I'm already preparing myself to hearing back reports from some here about having had Vauxhalls or knowing somebody who does and them being bad or that I just got lucky. But if it was only 1 car I could see as lucky. But not the case here. And yes, they have AC, power locks, power mirrors, power windows etc. They were loaded in 2002. So it's not that they don't have anything to break. No electric problems either.

What I'm saying is, so far it all have sounded exactly the same as with the other cars. Praise from current owners, excusing the car for the age and claiming regular maintenance is the key. But on the other cars which I got burned with, regular maintenance turned out to be regular repairs, which is very different. So it is sounding exactly the same so far. So forgive me if I'm skeptical. Hoping to see some former owners maybe jumping in with their reports too.

But so, does regular maintenance here means regular repairs ? Means being under your car every other week or even every other month?
 

Last edited by Jeagar; 02-09-2018 at 05:04 PM.
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Old 02-09-2018, 05:13 PM
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You are quite right about the Vauxhall Astra, it is a good reliable car. In most respects it has always been better than the equivalent Ford, yet has always been seen as second best. Perhaps it is down to marketing in much the same way that VW have marketed their cars on the basis of reliability. Is there any evidence that they are more reliable or is it just effective marketing? I have friends who have VWs and are sick of people stating 'if only everything was as reliable as a Volkswagen' every time it breaks down. I have a 1994 Fiat Punto Cabrio which we have owned since 2000 and like your Astra just keeps going. It's a Fiat (Fix It Again Tony); it should be unreliable and rusted to dust by now. Interestingly, it does share the ecu and ignition system of the Astra!
The XK Jag is a car like any other, there are good ones and there are bad ones. However, when you pay so much for a luxury grand tourer you do expect it to be more reliable. However, that is not always the case as many of the components are the same as on other mass produced cars. Electronic modules and switches for example are often Ford components. What you do get is a car which puts a smile on your face every time you get in it and still turns heads. I recently took an Audi R8 out for a test. It sounded magnificent, but did not feel as special as the Jag. In fact, while I was out in it, my Jag was attracting attention parked on the Audi forecourt!
My advice is let your heart rule your head and go for it. If is doesn't work out, sell it on. Being in the UK, the main thing to look out for is rust, particularly around the rear arches.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 05:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeagar View Post
Well, no former owners so far. But thanks for all who replied.
You are obviously searching for disgruntled former owners and their unfavourable opinions/experiences as opposed to satisfied former owners who quite likely as a result of that satisfaction are also current owners.
As l have already said, l think you are starting this journey from the wrong place.
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 07:08 PM
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Thumbs down Jeagar! What's with you Man?

Jeagar,

What's the deal here, Mr. Jeagar? Are you a Vauxhall Salesman or something?
You need to bring your little Vauxhall's down here to Texas and run them a while! Then, we'll see how those little things really hold-up... Come to think about it.....I don't think I have ever seen a Vauxhall....Is that some kind of a European Pick-up?

I am not sure what the purpose of your starting Thread was but I'm on my way out at this point! Sorry if you have had a problem with a Jaguar! Maybe, some people are just not meant to own one! I personally think it's time for you to move on! This is not the Forum for you!

Bye!

Billy Clyde
 

Last edited by bcprice36; 02-09-2018 at 07:12 PM. Reason: I had to remove a bad word!
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Old 02-09-2018, 07:09 PM
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I usually am comfortable swimming against conventional wisdom, but this time I'm with the majority 100%. Lack of maintenance is the #1 reason the XKR / XK8 'S have any substantial bad press. Some cars are designed with notion that the owners won't take care of them. Not these cars, rightly or wrongly, the engineers expected the owners to be bright enough to give proper maintenance.

Sure, there were some design mistakes made, but the Jaguars are not alone in that department. Many expensive modern cars push the design envelope, and sometimes there's some payback for being foreword thinking. The law of unintended consequences comes into play. But isn't that better than designing a boring econobox that breaks NO new ground ? Yes, the electrical system acts like a desperate junkie whenever the voltage falls below its many requirements. But that's the price one pays for having 500 miles of wiring doing everything under the sun for you.

The only other contributing factor to the bad reliability reputation, is the cost of repairs. If one can't or won't do even the more minor things themselves, then ANY used car can be an inescapable money pit .

Z
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 08:28 PM
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Understanding .
 
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Old 02-09-2018, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeagar View Post
But in the case of the X100, what is it which makes it so unreliable and gives it such a bad reputation? Is it the engine reliability? The electrics? The electronics? Body rust?
From my viewpoint, all of the above, (if one was just to hear me talk.)
When I bought mine in 2010, I was considering anything but a Jag. One Sunday in Blowing Rock NC, I got to see an XK8 up close parked on the street. The more I bad mouthed about it to my inquisitive friend, the more I liked it, and then (Thanks to this forum) I studied up on it. I bought mine for about 1/3 of my budget. I, as well as probably some others on this forum, have not given it the praises that it deserves for the simple secret reason of keeping the price down.
Now that eight more years have passed, I do not see reason to continue that secret. Someone correct me if I am wrong.
So far, 8 years with no regrets.
 
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