Buying a V12 with no history
Buying a V12 with no history.
Okay, so you acquired your 1980’s V12 XJS before doing the homework now what? First take the love of your life out for a great movie, or dinner before you begin your cost analysis of a car with no history/service records.
You must change out all of the fuel lines including the ones on the injectors even if they look good. This is the reason the V12 would catch fire. I bought my 87 XJSC from a guy who maintained it very well and it spent it's entire life in a climate-controlled garage and had 33,000 original miles and the car looked new everywhere in and out. I had a jaguar, Mercedes, Rolls and Bentley service business when I bought my 87 XJSC. If you can service this car yourself you can start by downloading a $400 value for free, the full set of factory service manuals I have posted here on the home page, then prepare for buying everything that has rubber on it including the ball joints and all suspension seals as they will fall apart and if not replaced right away, will cause much more damage to the car and other parts. The rubber on mine being original was hard and broke off like pieces of plastic. If you are not or cannot perform the work then prepare to pay out several thousand for starters. Then you have all the stitching on the seats that will most likely be dry rot and as soon as you start using the car, will separate and the foam on the seats will start disintegrating and you will see the pieces on the floor and the seat will collapse.
This is for you the person who does not know any history about the car, which is a big mistake when acquiring any classic car even if free. I wrote a buyers guide about this and you can download it for free from my site but the title is How To Buy An XJS However, that cannot help you now if you bought first. I have seen this happen too many times and it never ends happily unless you just for some reason had to have the car and are ready to dish out at least another $10,000 plus to make it a safe and proper Jag. The bottom line as pointed out in the book is this, There Is No Such Thing As A Cheap XJS.
I am more than happy to answer any questions to help along but please understand this, no one can intelligently guess at anything from a distance without really inspecting the car. And the mechanics that had shops that knew these cars are retired for the most part or passed on. So be sure to stay away from anyone who says they can figure anything out because they may but it will be your nickel that will be paying for an education that you still may not get the result you want. Many of these cars end up in such a case becoming the property of the shop as the owner just gives up as the piggy bank is busted open and there still is not enough. You are now asking yourself what have I got?
I spend my time helping people solve as many XJS problems as possible and make an attempt to write a weekly blog and so many times it comes back to buying or not. I love the brand and invented a Seat Extender for tall XJS drivers that I created for myself on my 95 back in 2006 and I am an XJS parts specialist and have been since 2006 and so many people would buy the car for the too good to be true price then when they contact a supplier for parts, reality sets in. There is always a reason a great car is put away and unfortunately, it is normally the cost of service.