I currently have an X-type 2.5 sport. This is my first Jaguar and I got it as an introduction to the marque and it has me hooked. I now want to replace it in about a years time or just over so I am starting to research my next car.
My first choice would be an XKR - but children and an assistance dog rules that out, but although it would not be the sole car (we also have a Yeti - nice car, economical but small at times) it has to be practical. I have therefore decided on an X350/358 (2005 onwards).
It has to be petrol, a V8 with the 4.2 litre engine. It will also have to have the wooden facia and associated trim and would love the wooden steering wheel.
Now which particular variant should I concentrate on? I know from following the forums over the past couple of years that the community is very friendly and helpful- and this is greatly appreciated by us lot lurking on the sidelines I therefore call on your wisdom and experience, if I may, to help me decide.
Is there much difference between N/A and the S/C in fuel consumption or reliability of engine etc?
If I get the Sovereign - would I kick myself for not getting 100hp more? If I get the S/C version -would I regret the fuel consumption and tyre wear? Do they have same tyres even?
Is one variant cheaper to maintain than the other?
Are these so similar that it doesn't really matter?
Is the suspension on the XJR much stiffer than the Sovereign? Is there a difference between the XJR and Super V8?
The car will get used doing around 10K miles/year all year round and not just come out on a sunny Sunday afternoon in the summer. It will have to earn its keep.
I'm sure you know the sorts of questions I should have asked in addition to these.
In advance - I really appreciate you taking the time to read this and for all advice given
You need to decide what you want the car for ie ultimate comfort or GT spec for enthusiastic driving... or a combination of both.
Use of power in supercharged models will cost in fuel consumption. However, driven at 56mph on the motorway, my XJR, although heavily modified to help it breath better, will return 35mpg if you are pussy footed. About 4mpg more can be achieved with naturally aspirated models. My XJR does 19mpg around town with cold starts. About 26 mpg can be achieved on A & B roads if you are cruise driving. It will drop to 23 if you are in a bit more of a hurry. 70mph cruising on the motorway will give about 30mpg but about 28mpg if you are trying to do the odd squirt of getting past bunched traffic.
Yes, suspension is firmer with sports air springs and 20" rims. The best ride and handling combo are found on cars with 19" rims. 20" provide a tad more wet grip but the ride is aimed at the "push on" driver who doesn`t mind giving up a little smoothness in favour of ultimate handling. You need to drive all versions and decide which suits you best.
Maintenance is similar on all models except SC versions need charger oil changes every 60k and to ensure coolant system reliability, the charger needs removal every 80k miles to replace a £25 coolant hose that is buried under the charger. Charger removal is a pig of a job The bolts on the EGR flange are almost impossible to reach and one of the throttle elbow to back of charger bolts is awkward to remove. Professionally changed, expect to pay around £700 to have this nauseous job carried out. If you are a DIY guy with advanced skill levels, you may expect this job to test you to the limit. Those who frequent this site and who have done this job, will all agree with me that this removal/replacement work can degenerate into a nightmare. These cars are getting old now and many have high mileages. If buying a SC model, keep back at least £1500 for immediate overhaul work on top of what you pay for the car.
Much gentler on you and your wallet will be the non SC models. They are reasonably quick with a softer ride and if you do long trips at legal speeds, this car makes sense and isn`t to hard to maintain. It won`t disappoint but it is a rather different drive to the XJR. The Super V8 is a poshed up XJR but with softer air springs and a long wheel base option.
I suggest you read posts in this X350 section paying particular attention to "General" "Engine" and Suspension" postings. Contributors have worked hard to give detailed accounts of carrying out jobs that almost all X350 owners will inevitably have to do if they own the car for any length of time. We have all had to do the same jobs eventually. Time input should not be under-estimated. I spent a large amount of time and money on my car for the first eighteen months of ownership. If the sun came out, so did the spanners. I was less enthusiastic in the winter but I had planned to get the car to an acceptable and reliable bench mark to get me through the first and second winters. The deep strip downs took place in the warmer months.
Decide if you want to buy cheaply with many problems to fix, or pay premium money for very good to exceptional examples. Don`t buy someones problem car! It WILL cost you in the long run.
Also read the magazine back numbers on this site for the last three and a half years. You will see the story of my then 78K miles old car which despite being reasonably low mileage, needed a mass of replacement parts. Anything that could wear, required replacement. That cost me £2.5K with my labour input estimated at another £4000 if I had put the car out to an independent garage.
This site probably holds the best source of reliable and experienced advice on the internet. All contributors are long time JEC members who have provided an exceptionally high level of experience, practical hands on maintenance, and accurate and reliable information. This site operates very differently from many other forum type portals. We won`t stand, bull dust!
If you read the postings and the mag articles, you will become very well informed!
Thank you very much for your words of wisdom.
I will indeed read all the posts in this forum as you have suggested and the back catalogue of the magazines.
You have highlighted a dilema that I must resolve - performace or comfort. Or the rare super V8 or even the Daimler equivalent?
I know that I have plenty of time to decide exactly what to buy but I want to research properly rather than buy in haste and spend for repair at leisure
I will indeed test drive the variants as soon as possible and resist to buy the first one I see.
A LWB version would be preferable and after reading your honest opinion I am leaning towards the Sovereign.
Although I used to weald a spanner or two, time and lack of suitable facilities and tools currently prevents me from doing a lot of my own work but this may change over time.
Again- thank you very much indeed for your input.
This is possibly the best car search engine around. It pulls all the ads from many different sites into one place and cuts out the need to dive all over the net in your search. This includes eBay, Auto Trader etc, etc. Register on the site and enter your email. Define your model type search criteria and your maximum traveling distance. Then sit back and just watch your email to get informed of all the latest listings as they come onto the market. The great thing about Trovit is that you will get updated listings several times a day. It gives you a serious cutting edge advantage and saves a huge amount of browser searching.
It is well worth constructing a spread sheet ie compare age, specs, mileage, maintenance and asking prices at a glance. It means when you go to view a car, you can work out what you think the car is worth to you given all the info you have constructed on the spread sheet. It enables you to stand in front of the seller and say " This car is worth £X to me. Here is my summary sheet on values........That is my offer. I`m prepared to buy this car right now if you agree to it. It is my first and final offer and I shaln`t be coming back again! Take it or leave it!" Ok, that`s a bit blunt but wording can be hardened or softened dependent on what type of character the seller is. Remember, cars are a buyers market. They also become remarkably cheap at 16.00hrs on Christmas Eve. Making this type of effort often gets you what you want at a bargain price and on your terms and conditions. If you are a car seller, pray you don`t have Rob Jenner or I turn up to view your car!!
Like you, started with a Jaguar (1994 XJ40 Gold- wish I still had it) then went through XJS's to an X308 Sovereign and now have a 2001 Daimler Super Eight and a recently acquired 2005 Super V8.
The SV8 is beautiful, very much 'Grace, space and pace'. It is a high mileage one with 227,000 on the clock. But, it's superb still. The engine is quiet, no rattles or wheezes. The power amazing when you want to use it - it goes like a train, outrunning most other cars on the road! Transmission is solid and the air-suspension is wonderfully smooth.
I didn't even see the car, bought it blind! It had dropped from just under £5k to under £3k with it not selling because of the mileage. Had it transported to Wiltshire Jaguar, local(ish) independent where they checked it out, changed all the fluids and gave it a clean bill of health. It doesn't burn oil, returns between 25 and 35 mpg dependent on driving style. The LWB makes for a very smooth, quiet ride.
Stick with what Mike says, whatever you buy. Treat it well, do make sure you do all the things normal servicing doesn't do (S/C oil changes in particular), transmission fluid, diff fluid, etc.
Wonderful cars, best Jaguar I have ever driven. Looked after, it'll serve you and the family well.
Thanks for your reply.
You make the SV8 sound very tempting indeed and I was surprised at the fuel consumtion figures you achieve. Quite palatable.
I am old enough to realise that there are good and bad cars out there, and I want to ensure I get a good one - whatever it is. I think that the SV8 and Sovereign are now my preference over the XJR for the comfort factor.
Will take your comments fully on board.
Rogers car was a high mileage LWB Super V8 with as I recall about 150k miles on it. The suspension was the typical softer comfort spec. By comparison, my 80k mile XJR had the stiffer suspension and Powerflex bushings all round. In addition it also had a tweaked engine and numerous other modifications. How did I find the Super V8? It soaked up the bumps better than my XJR but lacked the steering precision of the very driver focused XJR. I didn`t notice the extra length of the Super V8 until I reverse parked it. I`m glad the parking sensors were working.
Both cars were equally good but deliver slightly differently. The Super V8 would suit family cruising at sensible rates of progress, whereas the XJR is predominantly a single driver "push on" machine that comes into its own when making very rapid progress. The faster driver will perhaps prefer the no nonsense handling at the expense of a firmer ride. The Super V8 is more suitable for the moderate driver and his family for more comfortable touring. The XJR felt slightly better planted on the road but the SV8 is rather more refined in general use.
You won`t be disappointed which ever model you choose to buy. The X350 is thought by many to be the best Jag ever produced. I`ve owned my XJR for three years now and I just can`t see any need to get a newer car. It isn`t even on my horizon. The big question has to be.....just what can you replace it with? The newer new shape XJ models don`t seem to cut the mustard to traditional Jaguar owners. What else is around that gives such a huge feel good factor at such reasonable money? A Bentley perhaps. It is the only thing that comes anywhere near it.
Happy hunting. Make use of the Trovit Cars site and weed out the good from the bad.
Read both the posts comparing yourXJR with the SV8 and the SE.
They make very interesting reading indeed and thoroughly enjoyed them - very enlightening.
I finally figured out how to get access tp the magazines(me being stupid)so now have an excuse to spend many an hour on the computer reading the back catalogue
Leaning towards the Sovereign at the moment.
I have committed to taking the plunge!
I will be getting a 2005 4.2 NA Sovereign LWB.
Don't know when I will be picking it up yet as got to sort out some things - but hopefully in the not too distant future.
(What have I done )
I know its not perfect. Some issues here and there - but that's par for the course with these cars.
Also has some minor corrosion but not show stoppers. Again par for the course with these cars now at this age.
Will get things done over time after going over the list with my friendly mechanic and prioritising.
Yes I will post some pictures when it is safely on my drive. Looking forward to picking it up and the 200 mile drive home.
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