Looking at a potential XK140 project

So…this popped up for sale near me.

I’ve always wanted an XK…but buying a finished concours one will never happen…but I do love a project, and buying one and fixing it up would be fun, and I could spread the financial pain out over a few years as well.

The obvious problem is the incorrect engine (although it does run, so there’s that.) It also needs paint, and an interior. (Pretend you never saw the garish steering wheel and shifter.)

If I get this thing, the plan will be to paint it myself, and probably find a donor engine out of a rusty Series III XJ6. I know the XJ6 has a 4.2L instead of the proper 3.4L, but swap over the old style polished cam covers and carbed intake manifold, and it will at least look the part. The only thing I’d have to farm out would be the interior.

The goal wouldn’t be to make a concours quality restoration. I’m assuming that ship sailed ( or sunk) when a previous owner decided a Ford V8 would be a good idea.

I just want it looking nice, and make a driver out of it. And when I say driver, I’m talking about cross country road trips racking up lots of miles. I’d paint it in a basic single stage non metallic paint like they used in the 1950’s, polish up the exsting brightwork with some Comet, and make a nice 10 footer out of it.

Now…my question is, assuming this car needs paint, interior, a new drivetrain, and the usual host of unexpected gremlins one can expect on a job like this…what’s a reasonable estimate of its actual worth?

I’m thinking even though these things can fetch 6 figures restored, the $27K asking price is a bit too optimistic on the seller’s part. I want to get it cheap, but I don’t want to make an insulting offer. Is the asking price reasonable, or should I hit them lower?

And yes, I know what the wise men say…there’s nothing quite as expensive as a cheap Jaguar. But I’m a sucker for a good project.

Hi…the real question is what is it worth to you as it stands…is it a real 140 body, chassis, interior etc…or a repro…xk140 can only be worth 6 figures if they are genuine…this never could never be worth that unless a lot of genuine parts are found and fitted…personaly to me it would only be worth the value of any genuine parts. …look up bring a trailer…see whats been sold with lumps fitted…Steve

Looks original XK140 FHC , but the ford engine will half the price, if you ask me.
You just buy a rolling chassis with no engine.
Seats are probably covered new with the wrong pattern, strange steering wheel also.
Chassis and brake system unknown, no pictures there.
I would not go beyond $17 K

rea1980, as long as it has already been modified from original and depending on the quality of the Ford V8 installation you may want to consider keeping that part intact and concentrate your money time and effort on the rest of the car, paint, interior, chrome etc. Restomods are becoming more and more desirable and sought after in recent years. The reliability and durability of small block Ford and Chevy engines are legendary (AC Cobra, Bizzarrani, Iso, De Tomaso etc). There is an entire category on this site devoted to “Lumps” Jags with V8’s. As long as it is something you want to have and enjoy to h—l with what everyone else thinks. Just a thought.

Well, Robert, welcome back! I was reading through some old threads yours, and was wondering what happened to you…

Looks fairly original and intact.
Even so, you have to determine how much of the firewall they chopped in order to stuff that engine in, and the condition of the sills and frame.
Regardless, as a bitsa it will never be worth much.

Given that you’ll almost certainly be underwater at any price, I’m with Peter. $15K would be about my limit. Maybe 20 if it’s better than the photos show.

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I am almost finished with a similar rebuild. three years ago I bought a 140 fhc with a chevy shortblock and chevy auto transmission conversion (my car was originally jag automatic). I put in a MarkVII engine and moss manual gearbox so it is period correct, even though it will never be numbers matching.

I suspect the car you are looking at was originally a manual - there’s a little indentation on the dash where the automatic shifter would have gone… yours doesn’t have it. Easy enough to check on the number plate (can’t see if there is one in the photos).

The body looks good - mine was as well. I didn’t do a “body off” restoration… my frame was in good shape too so I repainted it intact. Cheaper, and good enough for me. FHC don’t bring as much money when you sell as the cloth tops, and non matching numbers bring less too. I tried to keep the total costs to less than it was worth for sale - that was my guide. Things to consider:

Engine mounts for the v8 are in a different place. Check to see if the original jag engine mounts are still there, or if the frame has been hacked about too much. If so could be problematic.

I replaced everything - engine, radiator, alternator upgrade, transmission, drive shaft, exhaust. You would likely need to do the same. Drive shaft for the 140 fhc might be hard to find. I got lucky

Your pedal box has been mucked about. If you go manual you will need a pedal box kit and a clutch that matches whatever transmission you put in. I put in a hydraulic clutch from the xk150s. Don’t bother going back to the linkage based throttle… stick with the cable that they put in place for the v8.

The interior looks like it can be re-done back to original specs with kits that are available. Not cheap, but readily available. The center console on your’s looks like mine did when I bought it. Easily removed.

The electrics on yours have been replaced… the fuse box and components usually come through the firewall on the top right. Don’t see the wiring loom so that may need replacing.

Other things will just depend on how far you want to take it. For example, I am missing the chrome surround for the front and rear windscreens (as are you). Front one is about $450. Finding a used one is near impossible. If you are trying to do an economical rebuild these are the things that get tricky.

As mentioned above by others - most economical would be to get it going as is, paint it, interior, and drive it for awhile. You can always put a new engine in later ?

Happy to speak if you want more info.


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I’ve been gone a while, but I still have an account here. I should probably pop up more often, since I finally got an X350 for a daily driver.

How’s the purple E-Type?

Yea… s’been awhile!

You can catch up with my last-ever car project. Search on ‘Jee-Type,’


Can’t believe Paul sold the purple car…

That’s like Bo Duke selling the General.

But I digress…

Back to the XK-140…Since I posted this, I had a minor financial setback…in that I lost my job. That being said, there’s still plenty of work out there, so I hope to be back in the saddle shortly.

If this 140 is still there in a month or so when I’m back at work, the seller may be more inclined to entertain a discounted offer. At $15-17K, I’d be tempted.

In the mean time, if someone else does snap it up…well, you should at least keep us posted on fixing it up.

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