Your first XJS outing

Ok here you are all smiles, shoulders back, the best shoeshine one can have, a fresh manicure and haircut, and wearing a Harris tweed blazer ready for a dream drive in the early XJS you just acquired. Wow, look at you a real lady killer! So you walk into your garage while opening the door, a few of your neighbors are out and about talking about the XJS they saw delivered to you the night before. So, they are all eyes as you approach the car you always wanted but now you completed the acquisition.

So, you greet the neighbors while proudly pulling on your lapels. After all, you the man as they would say in the 80s. Well, you pull out and enjoy watching the neighbor’s jaws at ground level. Now you are out on the road for a couple of hours and your fuel gauge is reading half full so you think no problem so you drive a bit more then suddenly the car starts to cough and buck like a horse in a rodeo now everyone around is looking but you wish there was a beautiful woman around to distract them from looking at the performance your dream car is presenting.

Oh yes now you wish you could crawl under the dash and then suddenly your fuel gauge jumps to E and bam! The car stops but it's still rolling and there is a fuel station just ahead so now you are so very uncool having a conversation with the car like high power coach pep talking to a team that just can't seem to get it together. So wish it would just roll right up to the pump but now it seems as if this is a one-way conversation. So, what did you think this whole day was going to be a movie script! It is but not that kind of movie so now it rolls right up to the driveway of the station and now you feel like an orphan in the film Oliver Twist. Well, have no fear.

I have had a couple of people ask questions about 91 and older XJS cutting off while driving. As the pre-facelift cars are becoming more available at reasonable prices, many are taking advantage of it and buying the early XJS. However, most find the fuel gauge not working. This is typical of the barrel type gauge. Both of my 87's had this issue and you can never guess at how much fuel is left so you will run out and stop dead. My Coupe just failed. My XJS C Cabriolet would work until half a tank then jump between half and a quarter then suddenly run out and drop to the bottom. Check with any gauge or instrument/speedometer repair and most can repair it. If you do not fix it, I promise you will run out of fuel and think something more sinister is wrong.

1 comment

  • Thew problem with inaccurate gauge reading is normally not due to the sender unit in the tank (my car had mention of the sender being changed three times in the history), the issue is with the anti-slosh (yes that is actually what Jaguar call it!) which is to be found under the haunches on top of the rear quarter panels on the inside of the boot. This electronic unit stabilises the signal from the sender unit to keep the gauge movements smooth when cornering. Took me a while to work out what was going on here!

    Simon Jenkins

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