[xj40] 1990 XJ40 Styling modifications and refinements

I have been following the forum for awhile and noticed that there
are many posts that deal with questions and discussion regarding
ride height, wheels, tires, appearance modifications, etc, and
thought that I would contribute some pix of work I’ve done on my
1990 XJ40 Soverign for consideration.

I think that the XJ40 body has great lines, but that the ride
attitude of the car and the factory wheels detract from the best
potential appearance.

So I set about to make changes that, to my mind, greatly enhance the
appearance of the car, bring out the best of the body lines, and
also update the car to a more contemporary look.

To accomplish this the car has been lowered all around, but
especially in the front to reverse the typical factory nose-up
attitude to a nose-down stance. The benefit of this is that the
body lines now converge with the road line and accentuate the clean
flowing body line. KYB gas shocks are fitted all around, and a
heavy duty front anti-sway bar has been fitted to replace the stock
bar.

The single biggest improvement that can be made to these cars is in
the wheel and tire department. Personally, I didn’t like anything
available from Jaguar as all stock wheels were (IMHO) too small,
too narrow, and too inset. I finally had a custom set of 5 spoke
17 x 8 polished aluminum wheels made up and used Pirelli P-Zeros to
complete the package. Now the stance of the car looks right with
the wheels lined up properly with the outside panels of the body.

With these changes the ride is supple and very flat through the
corners at speed. No matter how hard I push it in the turns I have
yet to hear a squeal out of the P-Zeros. There is obvious loss of
suspension rebound travel at the front, but this car was never
intended for off road duty so who cares; you just really watch the
speed bumps.

The car has been fully repainted and looks near mint condition
inside and out. There have been a few small performance tweaks as
well with more to come, but, inspite of the 180,000 miles on the
odometer, this Jag runs very strong. I always drive in sport mode,
take every shift possible to redline, and thoroughly enjoy the
power and great ride. Despite the hard driving the big cat just
seems to eat it up.

Hope you all find this an interesting variation on a great breed.
The pix are at:
http://www.jag-lovers.org/snaps/snap_view.php3?id=1147925781

Rabster
1990 XJ40, 1995 XJ6–
Rabster
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When I read the post, my thoughts were along the lines of “Oh no - another
butcher job…”

Not the case at all. The car looks really good. Congratulations!

David Hurlston
ViaData LP
Sugar Land, Texas

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In reply to a message from Rabster sent Thu 18 May 2006:

Neale,

Nice looking car! - I have to say that, because externally,
apart from the wheels and the number plate it looks pretty
much like my ‘91 Gunmetal Sovereign with the factory
‘SportsPack’ option and 225/55 x 16’’ Pirelli P6000 ‘J’
Lattice Alloys.
I’ll have to post a decent photograph of mine one of these
days - it too has the ‘ready to pounce nose-down stance’ you
so eloquently describe.–
The original message included these comments:

I have been following the forum for awhile and noticed that there
are many posts that deal with questions and discussion regarding
ride height, wheels, tires, appearance modifications, etc, and
thought that I would contribute some pix of work I’ve done on my
1990 XJ40 Soverign for consideration.


Bryan N, '91 Sovereign 4.0 L, (RHD)
Cambridge, United Kingdom
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In reply to a message from Rabster sent Thu 18 May 2006:

Rabster,

I would have to agree with others so far, great work and a real
improvment.

Totally agree with you on the stock wheels - they are a bit, well,
plain!

Best

Steve–
http://www.skjagtech.co.uk TWR XJ-S TWR XJ6-S3 and X300
Somerset, United Kingdom
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In reply to a message from skjagtech sent Thu 18 May 2006:

Actually I like one style of the factory wheels. But I like
the look of this car. Any chance of a shot straight from
the side. 90% or so. I think our car sits level but maybe
after having in our past a Maverick that set with the nose
well into the air with anything (a six pack) in the trunk
anything that sits almost level seems okay!–
Leapur, 91 VDP 200,000 and still going!
Colton, OR, United States
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I guess there is no point in discussing personal taste, but being a fan
of modifying cars, I cannot really disapprove. :slight_smile:

I went with a different approach to modifying mine. The bumpers were
replaced with a JustJags body kit, along with added side skirts and
spoiler from the same manufacturer. Sadly, the bumpers are no longer
available, but they were based on the X300 (6 cylinder) bumpers, which
can be made to fit with a bit of effort.

I also converted it to quad headlights and put on the 16x8 dimple alloys
from the X300, and some 255/50/16 rubber. Fitting those tyres I had to
remove the bump-stops on the back of the car, but even on very bumpy
roads, it never seems to bottom out, and the annoying clunk when going
over a large bump went away when I converted the rear gearbox mount from
a spring to a rubber one (based on a Ford Cortina engine mount). The
Billstein shocks yield a noticeable improvement in handling without a
noticeable deterioration in comfort.

Finally, I had the diff rebuilt with 2.88:1 ratio, for cruising at 70mph
at 1900rpm, and the engine was upgraded from 3.6 to 4.0 with a full
+Torque/TT kit.

Sadly, I have no pictures at the moment. :frowning:

Gordan

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In reply to a message from Bimbi sent Fri 19 May 2006:

Leapur,

Which factory wheels do you like then?

Steve–
The original message included these comments:

Actually I like one style of the factory wheels. But I like


http://www.skjagtech.co.uk TWR XJ-S TWR XJ6-S3 and X300
Somerset, United Kingdom
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In reply to a message from Gordan Bobic sent Fri 19 May 2006:

Gordon,

Sounds nice. Hope you get some pics on here soon, would like to
see :slight_smile:

I have a XJ6 series III with a TWR conversion and for me its
perfect - to others not so, but each to there own.

As we show our cars. the two we take certainly get a lot of
approving nods and we get engaged in a lot more conversations than
the others showing the same (XJ-S V12 6.0.ltr and XJ-6 4.2ltr
Series III).

There is nothing wrong with doing sympathetic upgrades of which I
include these mods.

I need to tackle the wheels on the XJ6 (currently lattice 15’’) but
my latest X300 is swallowing the money for upgrades at present
(some PO took the original dimples off and stuck on a set of
steels -yuk) but can’t moan to much as she cost me not a lot of
cash and now has 17’’ XJR wheels.

ATB

Steve–
The original message included these comments:

I guess there is no point in discussing personal taste, but being a fan
of modifying cars, I cannot really disapprove. :slight_smile:


http://www.skjagtech.co.uk TWR XJ-S TWR XJ6-S3 and X300
Somerset, United Kingdom
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In reply to a message from Rabster sent Thu 18 May 2006:

Personally, I LIKE driving over speed bumps at 35/40 mph especially
with a novice passenger that has seen the bump coming. The stock
suspension takes the bump in stride without losing composure. Bip
Bip. That’s why the tires have air in them and the suspension has
springs.
The car does look good, though. I’m definitely a fan of wide
tires. But the photos from the front and the back suggest there
may be a little too much negative camber all around. Won’t that
cause the insides of the tires to wear prematurely?–
The original message included these comments:

To accomplish this the car has been lowered all around, but
especially in the front to reverse the typical factory nose-up
attitude to a nose-down stance. The benefit of this is that the
body lines now converge with the road line and accentuate the clean
flowing body line. KYB gas shocks are fitted all around, and a
heavy duty front anti-sway bar has been fitted to replace the stock
bar.


Pete 70 XKE (193K) 88 XJ6 (233K) 88 XJ6 (217K) 60 Mini
Severna park, Maryland, United States
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Sounds nice. Hope you get some pics on here soon, would like to
see :slight_smile:

Will do, but I have to put the front bumper back on. I had a minor shunt
and it had to be replaced. Eince JustJags stopped selling the bumper kit,
I had to have an X300 bumper thumped to fit. Luckily, you can’t tell the
difference. :slight_smile:

I need to tackle the wheels on the XJ6 (currently lattice 15’’) but
my latest X300 is swallowing the money for upgrades at present
(some PO took the original dimples off and stuck on a set of
steels -yuk) but can’t moan to much as she cost me not a lot of
cash and now has 17’’ XJR wheels.

I find that the XJR wheels look very good on an XJS. I have a set on my
race car, but since the class rules change for next year, I’ll have to
downgrade to 16" wheels. I didn’t originally think they would look
particularly good, but the look has rather grown on me. They’ll be going
on my road going XJS when the current race season is over.

Gordan

Visit the Jag Lovers homepage at http://www.jag-lovers.org for exciting services and resources including Photo Albums, Event Diary / Calendar, On Line Books and more !On Fri, 19 May 2006, skjagtech wrote:

In reply to a message from Gordan Bobic sent Fri 19 May 2006:

Gordan,

I find that the XJR wheels look very good on an XJS.

Now there’s a thing, I have the TWR speedlines on my XJ-S and they
suit the car, but I did think about running her on the XJR’s for a
week or so to see if they looked alright and I even mocked up a
picture in photoshop to give me an impression. I would have to
agree it does look really good.

ATB

Steve–
http://www.skjagtech.co.uk TWR XJ-S TWR XJ6-S3 and X300
Somerset, United Kingdom
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In reply to a message from Rabster sent Thu 18 May 2006:

Well, to be frank, nothing personal, but I have to admit that I
don’t care for the modified look … &:-/)

From the front, I don’t know that Jags have a ‘‘nose up’’ factory
look … If anything, Layla is slightly nose down (unless my front
springs are shot). The modified look places the nose pointing too
far down, IMHO – the XJ40 is a four-door sedan, not a sports
car, so a noticeably pointed-down stance just dosen’t look right.

As to the modified rear view, the ‘‘wide stance’’ just doesn’t look
right on an XJ40, IMHO … It reminds me of the look of the cars of
the latinos down here that put those extra-wide tires and/or wheels
on their litle rice burners … ugh!

Sorry, I think I’ll have to pass on this one …–
&:-)) Paul '88 XJ6 VDP 130k & '88 XJ6 VDP 180k
Garland, Texas, United States
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In reply to a message from AttyDallas sent Sun 21 May 2006:

Paul,

Are you sure?

As I mentioned in my earlier post, Neale’s modifications
seem to give his car a similar appearance to a factory
‘SportsPack’ equipped Sovereign - like my '91.

I’ve tried to find some photos to demonstrate what I
consider to be the attractive ‘nose-down’ stance of my car
and these are the best I can find to show that. As you see,
not too dissimilar to Neale’s car.

http://www.jag-lovers.org/v.htm?1148202257

Hardly the front spoiler scraping cut downs beloved of the
genre you mention! I think those Browns Lane designers knew
a thing or two!

My car too has 8’’ wide wheels but on 16’’ rims which again,
with 225 x 55 tyres, seem appropriate to the sports sedan
styling (as opposed to a sports car!). Not much point though
in taking a front / rear straight-on photo of my car to
show the tyres - it also has factory mud-flaps front and
rear behind each wheel, and they are 9� inches wide!

However, as always, ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’!–
The original message included these comments:

Well, to be frank, nothing personal, but I have to admit that I
don’t care for the modified look … &:-/)
From the front, I don’t know that Jags have a ‘‘nose up’’ factory
look … If anything, Layla is slightly nose down (unless my front
springs are shot). The modified look places the nose pointing too
far down, IMHO – the XJ40 is a four-door sedan, not a sports
car, so a noticeably pointed-down stance just dosen’t look right.
As to the modified rear view, the ‘‘wide stance’’ just doesn’t look
right on an XJ40, IMHO … It reminds me of the look of the cars of
the latinos down here that put those extra-wide tires and/or wheels


Bryan N, '91 Sovereign 4.0 L, (RHD)
Cambridge, United Kingdom
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In reply to a message from Bryan N sent Sun 21 May 2006:

I always thought that slight nose down pitch was normal for an
Xj40 - both my former '89 Xj6 and the Xj12 are pitched down
identically to Bryan’s.

Our '90 VDP had a slightly flatter stance.

Win Dooley
Fort Smith, Arkansas

1993 Xj12
2004 Xj8–
The original message included these comments:

I’ve tried to find some photos to demonstrate what I
consider to be the attractive ‘nose-down’ stance of my car
and these are the best I can find to show that. As you see,
not too dissimilar to Neale’s car.


Win Dooley
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In reply to a message from Bryan N sent Sun 21 May 2006:

wow - very nice cat, Bryan … first time I had ever seen her …
how do you manage to keep her so ‘‘young looking’’?

btw, she doesn’t appear to me to be as ‘‘down-pointing’’ as Neale’s
cat, but then again it’s 4 a.m. here now &:-D)–
&:-)) Paul '88 XJ6 VDP 130k & '88 XJ6 VDP 180k
Garland, Texas, United States
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