I love my old XJ40, and many people do not, so be it. I have polished,
tweaked and squeezed extra power from a basic, stock engine, and I
find it to be a confident car. I have been wanting something with more
performance and thought an XJR would be it.....nope. A quick jaunt to
the Jag dealer and I found that even the XKR IS NOT SPORTY ENOUGH.
So here it is...Jaguar has lost its way or we have become to spoiled.
I want a pure sportscar, not a touring compromise. I want manual
windows, no a/c, no power steering, no rear seat, no nada nothing. I
want the radically tuned, high rpm, unfriendly engine and a manual
transmission. No abs, no traction control, no bs.
Now there would be my next Jag.
As an XJ40 owner what made you think Jaguar made sports cars ?? Jaguar make
fast GTs, the only cut down sports cars they make are on the racing
circuits. If you want an out and out sports car buy a TVR, it seems to fit
all your requests except no electric windows !
Oh probably an old e-type, c-type, d-type made me think Jag made
sportscars. Now the XJ is a fine car but don't think I compare it with
my 93 Toyota Supra TT. The XJ is a nice high speed touring car.
Now I do think that MG makes a fun car, but as another poster
mentioned, I think I want an enhanced Lotus Elise Exige. It certainly
fits the bill.
Sometimes less is more...
It's very intersting that Jaguar's heritage is really based upon outstanding
two-seat sports cars and racing, yet for over three decades they haven't
built a "real" sports car, and haven't had a racing success since Ford took
Wolfgang Reitzle seemed to understand all this when he called for the F-Type
sports car to compete with Porsche Boxter, etc. I typical fashion, this was
the first product the dumbasses at Ford axed. Perhaps 'ol Wolfie knew what
he was on to, the Ford nitwits sure don't!
All I would need is a miracle from Jaguar.
I sold my nice 88 XJ-40 with blown transmission for $750.00 to a junk
dealer. I felt like that was a miracle in itself.
Lets see, the car cost $52k in 1988 to purchase, and I had all
service/repair records from day one. Jaguar itself, and then the
previous owners, had spent nearly $30k on repairs. That does include the
$3+k that Jaguar spent (warranty work) to put a new differential in the
car the year it was built. How many new cars need a new differential
installed the same year they are built? Id guess its VERY rare.
So, someting is indeed VERY wrong with this whole picture. I know these
are high maintenance cars, but hell, if the car cost that much 16 yeers
ago, wouldnt you expect better service than that? I would think they
would use premium parts, which would help justify the price, but
aparently not. Many of us have seen Chevys go a quarter to half million
miles or more with little major repair work done to them. Are cars for
poor people built better? Are high dollar cars built for wealthy people
made shoddy on pupose, because the manufacturer knows the buyer can and
will afford the repairs?
Makes me wonder.
How sad you gave away the XJ40. For $600, you could have had the car
back up and running and sold it for $3000-$4000. (Depending upon condition)
I can't imagine anyone having to spend that kind of money on those sorts
of problems with a car --much less a Jag. It sounds to me like the original
owner and possibly yourself were victims of the dealership. These cars were
the first to come with a 100,000 mile drive train warranty and they STILL
honor the life time warranty on the seatbelts -- regardless of age or owner.
Whilst rare, I have heard of differentials having problems.
I can, however, only speak to my own 1988 XJ40. I am the second owner of
the car and I have most of the service records. In the first 152,000 miles
put on this car by the previous owner, the only major repair that was
performed was a re-build of the transmission. The ZF22 transmission, used
by Jaguar, Mercedes, BMW and Volvo ALL had the same problem If it was
tested by the inspection people or allowed to run at higher than 2000 RPM
for over 2 minutes in the Park or Neutral position, then the transmission
would burn out for ALL these manufacturers. The State of California even
issued a warning for all their inspection stations. The previous owner did
sell the car because the steering rack was going and she wanted a new car.
The steering rack was a $200 replacement part with a lifetime warranty.
As for the rest of the car, it will have little niggles as any car will
over time. My 1988 XJ40 now has over 200,000 miles on it and I would trust
it to drive across the country and back again. I have no warnings on the
dash and I get 27 MPG HWY, 18 MPG city. I have spent less in major repairs
on this 17 year old car than I have had to spend on my 1997 Dodge truck with
80,000. My 17 year old son now uses it as a reliable car to take him to and
from school High School with his buddies. Compared to his friend with a
Volvo -- this Jag is the most reliable, inexpensive car ever made!!! My
friend just took his Porsche Boxster in for routine scheduled maintenance.
3 days later and $1000, he got the car back with a clean bill of health
having found nothing wrong with it.
ALL of the problems on an XJ40 are known and are predictable. Perhaps,
that is why I have very little problem with ANY of my 3 Jags. I do the work
myself and I anticipate what could be a problem before it becomes one. One
of my Jags is 37 years old with unknown mileage. It is my daily driver and
still goes strong.
I am indeed sorry to hear of your mis-fortunes with your Jag. Perhaps
you SHOULD stick with a Chevy.
Yes, Im going to stick with GM. Im thinking an older Corvette Stingray.
A worthy investment in that the car will retain some value. The Jag had
a "book" vaue of about $1500, so by the time I had fixed the
transmission I woudnt have come out on it, especially since the car
seemed to be in continous need of repair of some type. The differential
had roared/whined some ever since I had it, and thats the second
differential its had. The car only had 145k miles on it. Meticulously
maintained all its life, and still it always required more, MORE. I had
receipts for lamp modules at over $400 each, while Chevy can make a bulb
blink for less than $10. It was a fine ride, WHEN it WOULD ride. Ive
talked to a few local former Jag owners, who had models ranging from the
1960's to the late 80's, and they all have basically the same story as
mine, their Jags stayed broken down most of the time. It would be nice
to be able to own a Jag that was dependable. I never liked Fords, but
maybe after Ford makes a Taurus out of it, they will be a little more
Maybe I can find a 1940's model Jag sitting in a barn somewhere, now
that might be worthwhle :o)
you do know of course that most xj40 diff noises are due to worn output
bearings? teh design of the diff requires these bearings which will usualy
not last the life of the car or the diff. they can be replaced with the diff
in situ. now if it was the input bearing then it has to come out. 2 yrs ago
I dumped my 88 xj40 with 230k. had all the typical probs. now I have a cad.
deville with a third of that mileage many more serious problems and a car
payment. big mistake
The 88 XJ40 was perhaps one of the most problem plagued, unreliable vehicles
ever launched. That being said, it was a great highway cruiser and with an
undeniable elegance. Through analysis of warranty claims, customer and
dealer complaints, within 60 days of its launch in Spring 1987 (as an 88
model) the Jaguar service organization in the States had documentd 57
"unfixable" faults through. These were the results of either substandard
design, poor manufacturing processes, substandard componentry or a
combination of all three.
By the next Fall they released a "Product Enhancement" kit to recitify a
number of the most serious faults for which they couuld finf a repair. They
then set about fixing the issues one at a time in production. Thus, the
earliest XJ40s still on the road are by now likely to have recieved updates
to later spec. Many of the issues weren't corrected until the launch of the
X300 facelift in '94, some argue even that car still had a number of
undesireable issues endemic to the original, BL-penned XJ40 design.
Differential noise & early failures were indeed a problem. GKN, the
manufacturer, could not achieve a consistent setup. Along with Adwest,
Chloride and a number of other vendors, post -89 Ford management fired them
and replaced them with top drawer producers like ZF, Varta, Bosch, Denso,
etc. While the list of issues with the '88 are now funny to review, they
were a nightmare to deal with if you were, as I was, a Jaguar Service
employee in the late '80s.
Other issues: ride leveling system failures (numerous issues), dead
batteries, bulb-failure module failures, odometer readings that reset to
zero automatically, fogged windscreens (defrost design), single wiper blade
that wouldn't clean the screen (this issue remianed through X350), tinny
door panels that rattled when closed, bad panel fits, steering wheel shook
when the door was closed, transmissions that wouldn't go into park (ZF
claimed J-Gate cable design), seat control switch location - inandertent
operation, no tow hooks, blown headlight fuses (frozen washer bottles due to
no screen wash fluid installed at factory, design put the washer motor on
the same fuse as the headlights...brilliant!), front a-frame spring bucket
bolts fractured (front suspension collapsed), glove box door fit &
operation, exterior door handle failures, tail light lenses discolored from
UV exposure, brake light switch stuck on (tail light lenses melted), etc.,
When they were new, it was not unusual to find XJ40s that had amassed over
50 warraty claims by the end of their second year of ownership. The record
for an XJ40 buyback was 130 warranty claims in 3 years...the law at that
time in the USA was 4!
This last point underscores one of the main reasons Jaguar still exists: The
owners of these cars, as well as those of us who worked for the Company,
loved these cars and just wanted them to work. Every once in awhile I'll see
one cruising along the highway, or sitting on a used car lot and chuckle.
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