Smaller steering wheel

I’m contemplating replacing the stock steering wheel on my 89 XJ-S with a smaller diameter one to allow for more room. Any thoughts/ideas? Saw some nice Nardis on amazon, but unsure which ones will fit. Thanks!

I purchased a used Momo Zebrano, with wood in it. Looks great, is 13.5" diameter (original is 16").

I can easily fit my leg now. I also had to buy a Momo steering wheel adapter, Momo 2201.

Adapting the horn is a little bit of wiring work, but doable.

image

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I just got a moto lita w wood brim and sewed a leather skin over it

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Greg, any chance you can put the camera where your eyes are when driving (not while driving obviously :|) and snap a pic? Curious what the dash visibility is. My factory wheel perfectly covers up the turn signal indicators, so I added two small LEDs down low where I can see them. Curious if you are gaining or loosing visibility to anything else on the dash with the smaller wheel.
I think I want a smaller wheel post-5speed conversion, and I really like the look of that one.
thanks!
Bob

The JaguarSport wheels by Momo are pretty nice. When I bought my XJR-S I found that someone had swapped the original wheel for a standard airbag item, Yuk. After a few years scouring eBay I happened upon an original XJR-S steering wheel, NOS, original packaging. The seller didn’t really know what they had, so I got it pretty cheap.


But it was just the bare wheel, no mounting boss. For some reason it was damn difficult to find a Momo->Jaguar boss, so I took to eBay again. Cheapest way to get one was to buy a S/H complete wheel and boss from an early XJ40 based XJR.

Turns out I really didn’t care for the ten past ten style that the (correct) XJR-S wheel enforced, and I much prefered the quarter past nine of feel of the old XJ40 item I got from eBay. So that’s what I installed on the car.


Both are 14.5" - not sure how much smaller that is than a stock wheel, but they are a lot thicker, with a much better feel.

[ Just had add an edit - sorry, I rotated that picture to show the wheel attached to the car the right way up, but it looks a bit odd. ]

Not gonna help much, as I have steering wheel out as far as it goes, seat back all the way, and my head has just under an inch clearance from headliner. So unless we are identical, it won’t help.

I will say, I can’t see my turn signals either, but can see most other important parts.

I just really like the look, and I needed the leg clearance, being 6’3". And the original looked like it was from a Pontiac :wink:

That’s hilarious- I am 6’3 and drive my car the same way :rofl:. With the seat leaned back farther than id really like it. On my list is modifying the seat rails to get another couple inches of rearward travel. I think I’m down for a smaller wheel regardless of the view. Gotta be more comfortable.

On my '83, you unbolt the seat from the floor, flip it over, unbolt the rails from the seat, and reassemble them in alternate holes. Gives about another inch of leg room. Have you tried that yet?

OTOH, somewhere around 1990 I took a test drive in a new XJ-S. I couldn’t fit in it. Seemed everything had gotten more bulky, especially the seats, perhaps because they had gone to electrically adjustable seats and needed room for the motors.

Could you post a picture of the steering wheel in your car? I would like to see how well it goes with the rest of the interior

i’ll take some photos today for you guys…

mine’s an 88, and i couldn’t flip the seat rails over. Had to do the mod where you chisel out something so the rails can slide further back. It bought me another 1" of legroom. But the only person who could sit behind me now must have no legs.

Moving the seat back, smaller steering wheel, AND cutting the bottom/right corner off the brake pedal has made this car drive-able for me. It’s really designed for under 6’-ers!

This might give you some ideas. Smaller wheel blocked the turn signals. Had to add additional lights to the turn signal indicators

http://bernardembden.com/xjs/int/index.htm

I have not tried that but I will. My plan is to remove the seat when I have to take the console (for the 5sp) out and do whatever it takes to modify it. I’ll post my findings along the way.

I think @gregma is right that the view will be pretty driver-specific. My turn signals are totally blocked now. And I mean totally. If I have the wheel pushed all the way in sometimes my fingertips brush the windscreen. I can work the clutch and brake, but my knees are splayed. Not ideal.

This is the “Raid” wheel in my car.14 inches O.D. All the gauges are visible, but not the turn signal indicator lights. I did what Bernie Embden suggested and added two more. I prefer amber for turn signals because that is what I remember from when I worked at Smiths.
The added benefit from having a “Raid” wheel is that any bugs that fly into the car generally don’t last very long.

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It’s not flipping them over. It’s attaching the seat to the rails using different holes.

I remember reading in your book that it wouldnt work for my 88 (with seat warmers and electric lumbar)

Well, drat. Different rail spacing, too, IIRC, so you can’t swap in the earlier seats.

Here are some photos as promised

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…nyuk nyuk.

:grimacing:

May I please ask for some clarification.
There are a number of adaptors on eBay that seem to indicate Jaguar-Momo fitment.
One poster mentioned Momo 2201, but I see p/n 2202 and 2207 also given as possible for the XJS.

Do you or anyone else that has done this know the difference between these adaptors?
Difference between the early cars and the facelifts?