2nd post to this thread.
Here’s a more detailed description with a special focus on what’s bad or what needs attention.
It’s not meant to scare anyone off. I’d venture to argue that all jags of this vintage have some issues.
It’s more to say that, if you want the car, go for it. I’m only asking a song for it, and if you want to offer me less, I might take it… provided that someone else doesn’t agree to buy it for only $1K.
Here’s the very good part. It has five new tires. (4 plus a spare!)… so that alone may make it worthwhile to some XJS owners.
It’s a '93 XJS convertible. Champagne with a chocolate brown top.
It has about 100K miles… the odometer says 92K, but the speedo broke a few years ago.
I’ve owned it for the past 15 years, and used it for pleasure only.
It has lots of issues – although I didn’t consider any of them show stoppers – until the recent engine coolant issue.
The car is 27 years old, and JAGS are not known for their reliability, so quite honestly the car has issues, and I would not expect that to stop. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a parts car, or want to do an engine swap, or want a project, I think that this is at least a decent candidate. I don’t have a garage. If i did, i’d probably look at putting a chevy V8 in it, and rebuilding or repairing the rear end.
Here’s a run-down of the issues – just in the interest of full disclosure.
The AC gave me problems. I replaced the evaporator, and lots of other parts, and put in a reman compressor with a new clutch. The reman compressor was stripped where the bolt attaches that holds the two AC hoses in – so, it still needs work. I saved the rear piece of the old compressor, but it was filthy inside. My intent was to clean it thoroughly (probably by soaking it in a 1 gal carb cleaner fluid), and then place it on the back of the reman compressor. I have gauges, a vacuum pump, and about 12 to 15 lbs of R12 left, so if you purchase the car, I can give you the R12 too, but not the pump or gauges, unless you’re interested in purchasing everything. I don’t have any older cars anymore (once this one is gone), so I’d consider selling for a reasonable price.
The speedo doesn’t work. A signal is making it’s way to the front, because the trip computer registers mileage. In trying to fix it, I accidentally let one of the pins on the connector ground out. It caused smoke and melted one of the wires on the harness. Replacing the melted wire might fix it… or maybe not!
Something is leaking in the rear end, causing fluid to drip onto one of the rear inboard brake rotors. This is a very common problem in the car, and there can be many causes. I’ve heard it’s a pain in the tuckus to fix (that’s a technical term), but I haven’t tried.
I replaced the electric fan for the AC condensor with an after market fan, but haven’t wired it in yet.
I replace the accumulator bulb for the anti-lock brakes.
I’ve ordered a part from England to advance the engine timing by about 5 or 7 degrees… the part was shipped by hasn’t arrived. It’s supposed to increase performance.
I redid parts of the exhaust. Search for my posts, and you’ll see pictures. I like it, but the center resonator is a bit too low so it sometimes scapes the ground. I had the parts and a plan to redo that part.
I repaired problems with the blower motors for the HVAC. Now they both work, but the right blower motor has a slight squeak when you brake hard. I was planning to rebuild that.
I had to take apart the whole dash to replace the evaporator. The job was a success, but the interior is only partially reassembled. The rest has to still be assembled, although I do have all of the parts.
I had a problem with my power antenna. It’s a hirschman, I believe. I’ve gotten one from a benz that has the parts necessary to rebuild it. I also have a different brand of after-market antenna that could be installed instead.
I replaced the top with the correct type of replacement, but made a couple of small tears during installation, which I tried to repair with epoxy. It looked good for a couple of years, but has since turned white. Also, I replaced the headliner inside, but because I’m not very good with glue, I got black caulk on parts of the headliner in the back on either side of the window – oh well. That’s life.
So what’s good. There’s zero rust, and the body looks good. The clear coat is delaminating on the driver’s front quarter panel, but other than that the paint is good.
The body is good but not perfect… but it looks good and clean. There is one door ding that I’m unhappy about, and 2 or 3 small dimples in the trunk where I closed the trunk with something sticking up inside, and it made a small dimple. GRRRR!
I put 5 new Kuhmo tires on it about a year ago. They are basically new – fewer than 1000 miles. I say 5 because I did the spare tire too.
I’m keeping the battery – it’s a good one – and since I’m selling it cheaply, I’d rather keep my $250 battery and use it elsewhere, than let it go “at a loss”. You’ll need a battery, but I can leave it in for you to check out the cat.
The convertible top and windows all work well and as expected.
A connection for the rear defroster came off. I have the parts to fix it, but haven’t.
I put in an after-market alarm with remote start. You’d need to reconnect the wires to get it to work, but it should be fairly easy.
I’ve removed both switches that detect when the doors are open. I suspected that they were failing and a source of parasitic battery drain. I have replacement switches that can be installed, but it’s not done.
For the HVAC, there is an internal temp sensor that has a small motor that spins a fan to sample the temp of the air cabin temp. The fan motor doesn’t work. You can pull one from a junk yard from just about any car and wire it in to make it work.
The spark plug wires are maybe 4 years old, and good. I have new spark plugs that can go with the car.
Also, the seat heaters don’t work (common problem), the leather on driver’s side of the driver’s seat bolster is warn, and the stiching separated at one part on the bottom of the passenger’s seat – c’est la vie.
Also, the plastic casing around the seat belt latches broke. They need to be rebuilt, replaced, or repaired.
There were multiple wet spots in the engine compartment from various leaks – probably oil and power steering fluid. I didn’t notice that the car was low on oil or actively dripping, but I’m not surprised that after 27 years, that you will have and continue to get fluid leaks from old seals that have dried out and/or failed.
If you’ve read all of this, and are still interested in the car, then it’s for you, and clearly you are a jag lover!
Just last week, I ran a zero-sixty using a GPS app on my phone, and it was exactly 6 seconds. Not bad for a 27 year old 4.0L. I think that the exhaust mods were a big factor.
So. It’s an older jag. It has issues. It’s a gorgeous car, and still turns heads.
It’s like a boat – you love it and you hate it, and it always needs to have something fixed, but once you’ve been bitten by the bug, you won’t want to ever be without it!
I took the car to a friends house who lives in Fairfax Virginia – not far from the Gallows Road exit off of 495. I’ll go there this week to take a bunch of pictures to share.
I realize that the car isn’t worth much money as-is, so if you think you want it, make me an offer. You’ll probably be pleasantly surprised by my answer.