Exhaust Options (S3)

Hello from Virginia. This is my first post besides one I started back nearly 20 years ago when I was considering a 96 XJR (which I kept for a few years).

I am considering purchase of an 85 XJ6. If I do purchase, one issue I need to resolve is an exhaust leak that manifests between the cat and mufflers. I’m hoping it will be a simple repair, but if not I would like to do this job once and only once.

What are the favorite vendors for cat-back exhaust systems? I’m not well-versed in all the vendors and exhaust brands out there. I’d like to stay as close to stock in look and sound as possible – this isn’t intended to be my throaty muscle car or my high-pitched sports car. I just want it to sound like it did originally. Thoughts on stainless would be welcome as well. Price point is higher, but again, just doing exhaust one time is a compelling thought.

'85 XJ6 (maybe)
'85 Ferrari 308
'39 Rolls-Royce Phantom-III (3DL170)
'57 Bel Air

Hello Matt - always glad to see an “old-timer” return - question - at the end, you list “85 XJS (maybe)” but in context you list “85 XJ6” - are you talking about exhaust for XJS or XJ6 - just curious.

Oops, because I messed up. I’ll edit the post if I can, but I’m looking at an XJ6. And the “maybe” is because I continue to try to convince myself not to get into something I shouldn’t. Life is simpler (but less) fun that way. :slight_smile:

1 Like

The usual suppliers - for example: SNGBarratt, Welsh Enterprises, MossMotors, TerrysJag, etc (I have used all of them one time or another) - can provide stock parts for this.



exhaust leak could be anything between olive mounting broken loose and y-pipe disintegrating …

The original mild steel exhaust systems seemed to have had a high content of stainless as they last very well. Not only for reasons of originality they are highly sought after now. They simply produce the best sound. While stainless exhaust systems are good for decades of no-brain-necessary service and don’t cost an arm and a leg, they sound different, a bit more “tinny”. I swapped in a Bell system, IIRC, everything fit more or less (expect some trouble with the over-axle pipes or keep the originals) and is still working well after +10 years.

Instead of just swopping out everything you might be better off to identify the cause of your problem and keep the ball low. You might enjoy a fully functional and original car with just one good used spare part …

Good luck with your decision and … jump in!


75 XJ6L 4.2 auto (UK spec)

Where in Va? I’m in Md. I have non-cat Euro down pipes (used) for Series 3 and XJ40.

Makes sense now - thanks.

I live in Fredericksburg, so just about an hour south of DC. My Ferrari is a euro 308 but the safety inspection shops still want to see that it has a cat (it doesn’t, although I have EPA paperwork that shows – incorrectly – that it was fitted with a catalyst upon importation back in the 1980s). I’m sure I’d get dinged for the lack of cats though on a normal US 85 Jaguar…unless others have a different experience…?

I have a really long story that I’ll spare everyone the details on, but I lucked into an OEM full exhaust from the headers back for my 1939 Rolls-Royce Phantom-III about ten years ago. There’s no such thing as OEM for these cars anymore, but a former owner of my car had a system shipped to her from Rolls-Royce directly back in the early 1960s and never had it installed on any of her numerous Phantom-IIIs she owned through the years, so that system is now on my car!

So yes, I get the full OEM sound/look/etc of an exhaust, which is why I was asking. Based on your feedback, I find it unlikely that I’d do stainless even if I needed a full exhaust. I don’t want a different sound.

Thanks, I’m new to the game here and could tell you where to buy parts for my Rolls which I’ve owned for 17 years or my Ferrari that I’ve owned for 24 years, but being completely new to the game I have no clue on the “usual suppliers.” I’ll do a search on the forums for a previous thread on the topic of “usual suppliers,” but you just gave me a head start. Thanks.

Matt - when I went through updated training (as a state vehicle inspector) for the upgraded “emission inspection”, we would look first in the engine bay for any EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation) valve system - if none, then wouldn’t worry about going under to check for catalyst convertor unit - so if engine maybe had been changed then may not have cats and would pass.

Which state? I’m in Virginia. We have two different types of required periodic tests. There are annual safety inspections, and there are bi-annual emissions tests. Not every locality has the emission test requirement, thankfully including my locality! :slight_smile: That said, the annual safety inspection includes a visual inspection of what “should” be there according to the model year of your car. The EPA required catalytic converters starting in 1979 (I think that’s the year), so any car newer than that should have one and if it doesn’t, you’ll fail the inspection. That said, my 85 Ferrari hasn’t had cats on it since I bought it in 1997, and this omission of the cat has been ignored or not noticed for the majority of those years, a couple years the inspector has asked me about it and I don’t have an answer and the inspector somehow finds the cat on my car (???), and one time I convinced the inspector that I didn’t need it because my car was a European-spec car and I showed that “when new” it never ever had a cat (by showing him the parts manual/diagram). In any event, it has been a bit of a hassle on my euro car, but for sure a smart and conscientious inspector of a US spec 85 XJ6 that notices a lack of catalytic converters might be a risk I don’t want to take. I guess if that happened, I could just find another inspection station or retrofit the cats…

1 Like

In Pennsylvania is where I have held my state inspection license - notably a few years back.

The Jaguar V12 H.E. doesn’t have EGR from the factory. So you wouldn’t look for cats? I don’t understand that.

1 Like

Was making reference to cars in general about EGR - after I wrote it, got to thinking about the V12, so will go have a look - good point Kirby - of course I remember we also had a list of most vehicles and what was supposed to be on them for emissions purposes.