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Jaguar XJ-Series

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  • I told you about my '98 308 SWB in a previous post. Now to the quest for advice!

    I love the SWB but envy the VDP's wood wheel, wood shift knob and more opulent leather.

    Would it be unspeakably tacky if I installed a VDP steering wheel and shift knob on my "base" XJ8, and upgraded much of the car's existing vinyl to leather using the services of an auto interior customizer?

    If such as thing is permissible, where would I have the best chance of finding the necessary components? For the steering wheel installation I'm assuming the dealer is the only way to go?

    Thank you in advance for your kind advice.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Boy, that's going to cost you! But to answer your question, no I personally don't think it's tacky at all, and I tend to try to do that, or used to anyway. If you can find the stuff reasonably, I'd do it!
  • This little fantasy concerns the X308 series rather than the X350. I'm more familiar with the latter and like them more than new new version.

    If you could assemble all the available elements of the X308 series (wheelbase, interior and exterior trim, engine tuning and so on), what would your new model consist of?

    My ideal XJ8 would be thus: SWB, supercharger at lower pressure than XJR, giving 340 hp; 17" wheels from the VDP V8, suspension tuned closer to base-model comfort rather than XJR firmness, base-model interior except wood VDP wheel and shifter (no boxwood or little trays!), and no vinyl, all leather. No black-out trim either, stay with the gorgeous stock chrome. Dark colors only. Updgraded stereo included. Model name: XJ Executive. Price point $10K above base model.

    Over to you . . . . ?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I agree on the chrome - I don't prefer the blackouts. It's one of the reasons I don't care for the "R".
  • We currently have a 2000 S-Type and I am interested in the new XJ sedan. Recently I had our S-Type into the dealer for an oil change and had the opportunity to go over the new XJ sedan in their showroom very throrougly. The car is magnificent on the inside, I could not find one fault whatsoever. Feel the exterior styling could have been much better, but it is ok! The real turn-off that I encountered, was the very cheap looking black plastic grille. It really takes away from the rest of the car, no doubt some Ford Motor penny pinching at work here. I've always felt that when it comes to luxury cars, hide the penny pinching if you must pinch. Anyway! I recently heard that Jaguar will be making slight changes to the 2005 XJ sedan due out this coming fall. Would anyone have information as to the XJ's Grille being changed? Even if they only chrome plated the black plastic, it would be a big improvement. Otherwise the new XJ is a superb continuation of the 30 year heritage of the XJ line. I strongly feel that the interior is much more elegant and luxurious than Mercedes, BMW or Lexus. Nice to see Jaguar winning on interiors right now!
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Funny how everyone blames Ford for the cheap stuff, when Ford took Jaguar out of bankruptcy and drastically improved the reliability of the brand. That black plastic grill isn't cheap, it's lightweight, and the blackout is by design, because the stylist believed it looked better. All grilles are plastic now for weight and replacement cost when smashed.
  • rforerfore Posts: 17
    I haven't seen the grille on the 04 XJ, but they did the same thing on the 97. After I bought the 97, I replaced the black plastic with chrome vanes. Looks 1000 percent better. If the grille vanes are the same as the x300 and x308's, they could be replaced on the 04. I thought the black plastic was like looking at a beautiful woman who had no teeth.
  • is it just me, or does the new jaguar xj sedan bear a striking resemblance to the new kia amati sedan? (tee hee!)
  • I am able to get a really good price on a 2001 XJ8 though a friend that works for a Jag dealership. I know he has my best interest at heart. He is providing a XJ8 with 28K on the clock, in prestine condidion, Select Edition, in the $26K range. My big question is.......am I going to be visiting my local jag dealer on a frequent basis and spending lots of dollars? I have read the horror stories on this forum and am quite concerned. I am used to the Japanese high end vehicle, I have no problems and am wondering if this is going to be a huge change to the negitive upon switching to the XJ8. All advise will be appreciated. Thanks to all...Rich
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Some of my friends don't have any significant problems with post 1997 Jags - but mostly, my impression is you will need more done than you're used to with your Japanese car. If you're not up to "some" maintenance, stay in Japan, because the Europeans don't have a problem with a little "service" once in a while. IT's not their culture or goal to produce "perfection", they produce "performance" vehicles. But maintenance is expected. Expect some.
  • I agree with Nvbanker if you are worried about maintenance keep on looking but if you are willing to put up with a few problems. There's nothing like a Jaguar to distant yourself from the
    crowd plus a Select Edition car will have an extended warranty. So do you want to step away from the crowd :)
  • Thank you for your input. I guess we can not have it both ways. Too bad.......the XJ8 is one hell of a car and I am not positioned to service and/or repair it as what seems to be necessary.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    You'll be keeping a list of "stuff" that needs attention between oil changes. Some of them will cure themselves, by the way. When you go in for your 5000 mile service, you will give the list to the service writer and the other stuff will get done too. It's rare you will have anything that needs immediate attention come up between service intervals.

    That's not like a Lexus, but it's tolerable to me, and a worthy trade off for the fun of driving the Jag.
  • bhill2bhill2 Posts: 1,333
    I own a 2001 XK8. It has had a number of small things that needed to be fixed. However, none of them were more than mildly annoying. This car, and the 1999 one that came before it, never had anything serious (i.e. requiring a special trip to the dealer) go wrong with them. In addition, at least in my experience, the dealers are very responsive to complaints. The payoff for me is that the car delights me in an uncountable number of ways. It makes driving a joy. I have never regretted my decision to get this Jag, and would do it all over again in a New York second.

    2009 BMW 335i, 2003 Corvette cnv, 2001 Jaguar XK cnv, 1985 MB 380SE (the best of the lot)

  • So, with what seems to be the consensus is that I am not going to be driving around with my hair on fire, but a smoldering ember or two is to be expected and is easily remedied?

    Is the 2001 XJ8 with 28K on the odometer, Select Edition, for $26-27 grand a good deal?
  • eman5eman5 Posts: 110
    Just received the 99 XJ8L I "won" on ebay. She's BRG with a clean interior, needs a dent fixed and a good bath, has 63K miles on her. No service records or owners manuals...

    So ten miles into ownership, of course, the check engine light comes on, and there's an intermittent "reduced performance" indication light. Engine seemed to be performing ok, though. Took her in this morning to a shade tree mechanic with a computer to hook the engine up to, and he gets these codes:

    P0171 System too lean, bank 1
    P0174 System too lean, bank 2
    P0335 Crankshaft position sensor fault

    He didn't have time to mess with any of this now; I reckon I'll be leaving it with him for the week we're off on spring break. Meanwhile, does anyone recognize the most common causes/fixes for these fault codes?

    Mucho obligado,
    Eric
  • If you want to discuss your error codes offline, drop me an e-mail at johnmul@pacbell.net.

    - John in San Francisco, '98 XJ8
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Actually, it would be very helpful to everyone in our community if you would discuss them right here. Why don't you post what you know and have the conversation here where it will benefits lots of folks?

    :-)
  • eman5eman5 Posts: 110
    The shade tree mechanic tells me the "too lean" codes most likely represent a leak in a hose that runs from the manifold to the engine, or something like that. He thinks the crankshaft position sensor indication is most likely a faulty sensor, since the engine runs smoothly. Hopefully, he'll find the actual diagnosis and cure over spring break. I'm a bit worried because he's actually a shade tree mechanic. The closest Jaguar dealership is 100+ miles away; I figure, heck, since it's out of warranty anyway, let's see if this guy can do the job...

    If anyone's experienced these fault codes and can decribe their causes and fixes, please post. Where's that great brentwoodvolvo guy gone off to? Let's work this forum!
  • 97vdpguy97vdpguy Posts: 111
    Does anyone know what would cause the shift lever to refuse to disengage when the engine is started?

    It has been cold recently, but I don't know if that's a factor. Several times, I start my car and try to shift out of Park into Reverse or Drive, and the lever fails to unlock when I step on the brake pedal.

    This is most annoying... I have a service appt, but not for another week.

    Thanks for any advice!

    Eman5:
    Since you bought an older car and it doesn't sound like the previous owner was very good about having regular service performed on it, you might want to dump a can of BG-44K into your gas tank. That will clean your injector system and might help improve performance a bit. Your Jaguar dealer will use the same stuff, only charge you much more than the $25 retail price for it. You can get it at most auto supply places.
  • eman5eman5 Posts: 110
    What's that?
  • The iPod is brilliant not just because of the hardware, but because of the music management software that comes with it. I'm a Windows guy, and the Matchbox application that is included with iPod provides the ultimate solution to keeping track of your music library -- which in my case consists of thousands of tunes. (Apparently the Apple iTunes application for Macs is in the same league.)

    I like my X308's upmarket Haran Kardon sound system, but its 6-CD changer is stone-age to an iPod owner. I want my iPod to talk to my XJ8's stereo, dammit!

    It turns out there are three ways to do get the two communicating. Possible solutions are nicely summarized in this Crutchfield article: http://www.crutchfieldadvisor.com/S-wFBnej9Vvq4/reviews/20031230/- ipod_car.html?page=1

    In increasing order of complexity, you can:

    1) Plug your iPod into a cassette adapter via the headphone outlet

    2) Connect to your car's FM radio via a wireless mini FM transmitter

    3) Hard-wire to your car's FM radio via an FM modulator

    Being the simple-minded type, I'm going for the first option. According to the reviews, Sony's CPA-9C MiniDisc/Discman Cassette Adapter is a great-sounding solution, and at $11 on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B00005T39Y/103-843- 6965-9487058?%5Fencoding=UTF8) the price is right!

    My older (20GB) iPod lacks the new model's docking port, so I'm going to get XtremeMac's iPod Car Charger (Firewire version) to keep the iPod's battery fresh during playback. (They also have a car charger for the new iPods.) See http://www.xtrememac.com/foripod/car_charger.shtml

    Will it be possible to get iPod's fantastic sounds to my X308 for a pittance and with no wiring required? I'll know within a week or so. Will post my findings here.

    John Mulvihill, technical writer, San Francisco Bay Area
    1998 XJ8, Anthracite/Charcoal
  • leadfoot4leadfoot4 Posts: 593
    Is some super concentrated, mule kick of a fuel system cleaner. IIRC, it sell for about $20 a can. Do a Yahoo search and you'll find a bunch of places to buy it.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
  • 97vdpguy97vdpguy Posts: 111
    It's a small (6oz) can of fuel additive. You pour one can in with a tank of gas. It cleans the fuel system and removes gunk. My jag dealer uses it when they do a scheduled service on my car. I pay between $20 and $25 retail for it. I sometimes use it in-between service visits.

    If you have an older car and aren't sure when the last service was done, it's not a bad idea to dump a can into your fuel tank.
  • bremertongbremertong Posts: 436
    I currently own a 1998 Cadillac Deville with 35,000 miles on it. I generally trade cars when they reach around 50,000 miles. I am thinking of a Jaguar Sedan for my next car, probably 2001-02 model. Are there any members of this conference that have owned both Cadillac and Jaguar? Would appreciate owners comments regarding: build quality, reliability, comfort, maintenance costs and any other factor you would consider relevant to a decision.
    My Cadillac has been to this point very reliable and only repair has been replacement of an alternator. I like the Jaguar body style better than Cadillac but have heard that maintenance costs are higher for Jaguar.

    Any comments by those with experience with both Cadillac and Jaguar sedans much appreciated.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I think you're right, maintenance will be higher on the Jag, but so will the refinement, the driving experience, feel and style. It's a totally different experience, believe me.

    The Jags are reliable, not prone to breaking down, yet there are "things" that need attention probably more than with the Cadillac, and they may cost a bit more to fix too.

    The trade off is in the fun. If the Jag moves you, it's worth the bother. If maintenance is your first priority, get a Lexus.
  • bhill2bhill2 Posts: 1,333
    but my question applies to XJ owners too. I have a 2001 XK8 with the DVD-based navigation system. I need to get an updated DVD. My local Jag dealer wants $398 for it. The system is a NavTech, but I don't see the XK (or XJ) Jag listed on their web site as a model that they have updated DVDs for. Does anyone know where to get one for only 1 arm or 1 leg, instead of one of each? Thanks.

    2009 BMW 335i, 2003 Corvette cnv, 2001 Jaguar XK cnv, 1985 MB 380SE (the best of the lot)

  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 167
    I drove a VDP this afternoon and thought it was a great ride. Can someone tell me how the XJR rides? I am curious to see if it's too stiff for everyday commute. Dealer's don't seem to stock them much or perhaps they sell too fast.
  • I drive an XJR to and from work every day. I have owned Mercedes, Lexus's, and a bunch of other "luxury" cars. After awhile they become just cars, but I look forward to driving my XJR every day. Not real fuel efficient, but I love it

    Bill A Dallas
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