What is it really worth

As you see the prices of the XJS all over the place from the last one that sold at Bonhams for around $55,000 down to that one for the unbelievable $2,000 OBO and the listing stating, not running and just needs some TLC. It may be a factory convertible from 89 to 96 or a mid-80s to 88 which was a coach-built car.

Because the 88 and older convertible is a coach-built and not factory, you may be forever having trouble sorting anything having to do with the top. If this car was not well maintained with service records you may have a nightmare on hand. As I state in the buyers' guide, there is no such thing as a cheap XJS. To get a very nice one, you can expect to pay at the least around 15K and even then there may be a few little things to correct that may end up costing another few thousand but some things you can correct over time. One of the biggest mistakes many people make is looking at a car that seems like, just some little cosmetics that end up becoming a big restoration. I was in the yacht charter business in NY named Wall street yacht charters which I finally learned the hard way that buying a boat that has been sitting around with seemingly only in need of just a little TLC, was one big headache. We all have heard of that saying boat is a hole in the water that you throw your money into.

Oh so you are now saying but a car is not a boat! I have news for you when you get involved in buying an XJS because it is such a beautiful car that makes you feel all fuzzy and other feelings I will not get into because this is a family channel and some monks may be reading this, you take the plunge and do the thing that makes your dog look at you with his head to the side. And then after you have spent all the money from the college and retirement funds and that $2,000 XJS still is not right! Now you’re sitting in the garage with a bottle talking to the only one who will listen. Oh yes, the same dog that looked at you with his head to the side when you got all fuzzy and bought that so-called cheap XJS but now he is worn out sprawled out laying down with only his eyelids raising to look at you and with every sip of the five brands of alcohol you take you to look at him and his eyelids are doing all the talking saying, I tried to tell you to buy one of those very nice clean cars!

Well, all is not lost, so get back in the elevator and go back down. No need to go to the roof of the tallest building in town or the Brooklyn Bridge or the side of the freeway where all of those well maintained and documented XJSs are driving by. No, you do not have to jump in front of one because you most likely will end up in Jaguar heaven as a forever reminder. It is better that you go on the speaking circuit at XJS anonymous and save others from the dilemma of thinking they will be the master of a cheap XJS. And with the prices still climbing, all XJS cars will eventually be high dollar including the rust buckets and wreaks, however, these cars will only become more valuable if supply suddenly becomes very low. But for now, there are still many great examples so there is no need to seek out the deal of the century. Do your homework and buy a good well-documented car you can enjoy from day one or very soon after.


  • Oh, for those who contemplate the ownership of one of Jaguar’s stop-gap luxury GT cars, made for 20 years, with what was left in the parts bins of a musty old factory. In a word; don’t do it to yourself. My acquisition is a 92 model, with a splendid V-12 engine that starts and runs! But, and here is where it gets interesting. It has no brakes. Well, how bad could that be? For starters, it has what is widely known as the Teves system, and that means lots of time, frustration and last but not least, money. Not just a leaky wheel caliper, or a bad master cylinder, but all manner of electrical and hydraulic gremlins. Quotes to repair or replace come in around three to five thousand American. Now, what to do? Some Jag diehards insist you can retrofit a different, more conventional system, and that sounds like a practical alternative.
    My automotive ‘steal’ came to me for the grand sum of $500! You read that right. It now sits, taking up space in my storage building along with other ‘rare’ cars that need all manner of fixing. It starts and runs, but you can’t drive it. Maybe when the weather is pleasant again……..

    ronald stephenson
  • I have a Black 89 V12 convertible that I had to live in at one time. and my other car is a sail boat that I have had for 35yrs. What can I say ? Hay Baby do you want to go sailing ? The answer was can I bring a friend ? Boy if that car could talk.


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