July 21, 2024
Industry News

Hidden Gem: 1985 Jaguar XJ-S Found in Junkyard

In 1985, American car buyers looking for a new V12-engined coupe had limited options. They could either spend a small fortune on a Ferrari or Lamborghini, or opt for the more affordable Jaguar XJ-S.

The Jaguar XJ-S, based on the chassis of the XJ sedan, debuted in the United States as a 1976 model. Production continued through 1996.

Equipped with a DOHC 5.3-liter engine, the XJ-S boasted 262 horsepower and 290 pound-feet of torque. This power output surpassed competitors like the Corvette and the Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC.

Priced at $36,000 in 1985, which translates to approximately $107,170 in 2024 dollars, the XJ-S offered a more affordable luxury coupe option compared to European rivals like BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

Despite its powerful engine and luxurious features, the XJ-S was known for its costly maintenance and repairs. Some owners even opted to swap out the V12 engine for a more reliable small-block Chevrolet V8.

Unfortunately, the XJ-S was plagued by electrical and mechanical issues, making it a challenge for third or fourth owners to keep the car running. Some resorted to engine swaps for better reliability.

While the gauge cluster in the XJ-S at the junkyard was missing, showcasing its unclear mileage history, the car still exuded luxury and performance, wrapped in soft leather and rare wood.

British Leyland was so confident in the XJ-S that they featured it in an iconic TV commercial with a mid-1970s Playboy Bunny, showcasing the blend of art and engineering in this unique vehicle.

## FAQ
**Q: Is the Jaguar XJ-S a reliable car?**
A: The Jaguar XJ-S is known for being temperamental and costly to repair, especially as it ages. Owners often face challenges with maintenance and keeping the car running smoothly.

**Q: What engine does the Jaguar XJ-S have?**
A: The Jaguar XJ-S is equipped with a DOHC 5.3-liter V12 engine, known for its power output and performance.

**Q: How does the Jaguar XJ-S compare to other luxury coupes of its time?**
A: Priced competitively at $36,000 in 1985, the Jaguar XJ-S offered a more affordable alternative to European luxury coupes like BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

## Conclusion
The Jaguar XJ-S was a unique and powerful luxury coupe of its time, offering V12 performance wrapped in elegant design and luxurious features. While it may have had its challenges with maintenance and reliability, it remains a classic and iconic vehicle that enthusiasts still appreciate today.

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