XJS & XJ from KWE Cars
Classic Spirit Reborn

KWE Cars Blog - Page 6

KWE tech note: V12 cooling system and heater problems

A Jaguar V12 cooling system in good condition is capable of dealing with all conditions, contrary to popular belief, and does not need upgrading or fancy coolants and additives. However, it is relatively complex and more difficult to keep in good condition compared to the I6 engines.

A common problem is that the heater will not blow hot even with the engine up to full temperature. As far as the source of heat is concerned, there are two main likely problems: (more…)

A Glaswegian grand tour across Europe in an exquisite XJS

In Doug’s second guest blog, we asked about any memorable journeys he’s taken in his XJS – and we certainly weren’t disappointed! It looks like Doug’s got the right idea when it comes to classic car ownership, as he gets so much more from the car than if it was kept in a garage all the time.

Have you completed any particularly interesting journeys in your Jaguar XJS?

I’m not keen on cars sitting in garages or concourse-style perfection. Don’t get me wrong, I am pedantic about how she looks, is maintained and drives. The key requirement being that the car must be driven. I bought her to enjoy driving and feel connected to the road, not to look at and polish – granted I do a fair bit of this too.

To this end, we recently took her to the Spa Classic Racing meeting at Spa Francorchamps circuit last May. (more…)

KWE’s Car of the Year 2015: Saloon from Scandinavia gets the full works

Last year, we worked on many amazing classic Jaguar cars, which makes it difficult to choose our favourites. However, we hold a particular soft spot for this project, and are extremely proud of the finished result – and its owner is delighted, too!

It’s not everyday that we receive a car from Norway, but it goes to show how much some Jaguar enthusiasts are willing to go to get a decent restoration. Our car of the year, an X305 with 6-litre V12 engine, was shipped from Norway with an extremely comprehensive restoration brief – we like a challenge!

As part of a full-scale restoration project, we conducted an expert evaluation for internal and external re-engineering perfection.

X300 Saloon stripped inside and out

Classic car restoration: X300 Saloon stripped inside and out

We fully stripped the vehicle, top to bottom, inside and out. Our expert engineers rebuilt the V12 6-litre engine, as well as suspension, braking and steering systems to ensure maximised driving pleasure.

IMG_6801-X2

We didn’t stop there, as all new leather interior was fitted, with Alcantara headlining and sun visors, complete with an audio system upgrade boasting seven loudspeakers and subwoofer in the boot. All interior and exterior lamps have been converted to LED types, with HID quad headlamps.

The car also had significant rust problems, which were addressed appropriately. The result has to be one of the most luxurious and powerful saloons on the road. The extraordinarily smooth and powerful V12 makes most modern cars feel inadequate.

The finished result!

The finished result!

The interior is now a soft and welcoming abode, with the seductive aroma of fresh leather. A true masterpiece both of Jaguar’s design and our restoration techniques.

DSC00750-X2

To discover the full extent of our work, have a look at our project build gallery: http://buildgallery.kwecars.com/KWE-Jaguars/DK54657-X305/

And for more information about how we can restore your classic Jaguar back to its former glory, please contact info@KWECars.com.

Jaguar XK8: A future modern classic?

The Jaguar XK8, famed for its role in Die Another Day, is Jaguar’s stab at a successor to the XJS. While undoubtedly a fine touring sports car, it lacks perhaps some of the charisma of the XJS. However, we believe that the car’s look and feel will contribute a lot to it becoming in 10 years or so a much sought-after classic Jaguar just as the XJS is right now.

Jaguar XKR made famous by Die Another Day

Jaguar XKR made famous by Die Another Day

Prices are currently very low and it could be a great investment opportunity for those looking for a future modern classic to invest in.

If you’re a current XK8 owner, we suggest you hold on to it, as prices are set to rise in the near to long term.

We’re also Jaguar XK8 experts!

As classic Jaguar experts, we are famed for our knowledge of the XJS and similar marques; however, we also know a thing or two about the XK8, which is largely based on the XJS mechanicals.

We’ve seen an influx of the XJS’ successor coming to our workshop recently, often due to the dreaded rusting process. Yes, modern vehicles can be prone to rusting, too! It’s therefore of paramount importance that you get your vehicle checked out, and ensure it’s sufficiently rust-protected to keep it safe and strong.

Newer vehicles are prone to rust too

KWE is able to look over your classic car, offering advice on protective and restorative actions, which help ensure the longevity of your vehicle, and contribute greatly to a rise in value.

At only 14 years’ young, this Jaguar XK8 is one of the more modern vehicles we’ve worked on in recent times, and it shows that you shouldn’t take your car’s age for granted.

Jaguar XK8 4 litre coupé visits KWE

Jaguar XK8 4 litre coupé visits KWE

The car had some serious rusting issues, both internal and external, which needed urgent attention. We have been able to put our expertise to good use, restoring the car to our favoured ‘better-than-new’ standard.

Jaguar XK8 rust

Jaguar XK8 rust

If you want to make sure your XK8 or classic Jaguar is in tip-top shape, feel free to get in touch via info@KWECars.com.

For more information about keeping rust at bay, read our five crucial measures to prevent classic car rust.

Jaguar XJS: ‘A rare combination of style, substance and speed’

As part of a new series of blog posts, we will be inviting a number of XJS owners and Jaguar enthusiasts to contribute to our blog, telling us exactly why they love the XJS.

We spoke to loyal KWE customer, Doug Wilson, about why he’s fond of his XJS, and what makes it better than the modern vehicles in his garage.

About Doug

Born in Lanark, Scotland

Occupation: Company Director, Power Utility Company

Interests: Music, guitar playing and collecting, whisky collecting and drinking, shooting, reading, sports and international travel

What’s in your garage?

Doug's V12 XJS

Doug’s V12 XJS

My wife drives a Land Rover Defender. I use a Mercedes GL350 AMG Sport Bluetech as my daily driver. My V12 Jaguar XJS Coupe (1989) is my classic car choice and I also run a modern sports car. For the last ten years or so this has always been a Mercedes SL500 or new SL 400 variant. However, I have recently traded-in my SL400 for a new Mercedes AMG GTS which is due to arrive in April of this year.

What makes the XJS special to you?

The XJS for me is a very rare combination of style, substance and speed. Delivering on the trilogy with aplomb. An XJS stands out from the crowd in a subtle and classy way, it can be elegant, sporty or rakish – it just depends what mood you are in.

Why did you choose the XJS over other models?

Most people drool over the E-Type and yes, it is a beautiful car to ‘look’ at but from a practical perspective it is cramped and drives like a camel with a sore hoof. The XJS just strikes a chord with me on so many levels. The flying buttresses are divine, the long side profile cool and sophisticated and peering over the long bonnet from behind the wheel is as close as we mere mortals get to piloting our own spitfire.

Doug's Jaguar XJS outside hotel at Lake Lugano, Switzerland

Doug’s Jaguar XJS outside hotel at Lake Lugano, Switzerland

It is a vehicle that delivers on all its promises and more. If there is a better GT of this vintage I have yet to drive it. Inside the cabin you have all the mod-cons, way ahead of its time, great comfort (amazing seats) and the feeling that you are wafting on your very own personal magic carpet.

The engine and gearbox combinations vary from year to year but I like the Borg Warner 3 speed and the 5.3 V12. Okay, from 0-60 it is not as fast as modern GTs but from 60-100 and 100 on up the engine is a sheer delight. You will not burn people off at the lights (well not everybody), but you will catch and fly past them effortlessly in an unhurried and serene manner. You need to try very hard to get an XJS flustered; it has impeccable manners and breeding.

Getting used to a three speed, long geared, automatic box takes a while, but when you master the art of downshift and understand the range of each gear, it is a very relaxing way to drive.

I spent a few months looking for the right car to buy and probably overpaid slightly for the correct provenance and history – one of my better decisions. It was a one-owner car with a genuine 24K miles on the clock. The gentleman who owned the car drove a Rolls Royce Silver Shadow during the week and had the XJS to take him to his golf club at the weekends. A very civilised way to live!

The car was unmolested or modified and came with a history file that would have choked a horse as well as all the original manuals, keys and tools etc. It was obvious that the car had been loved and the original leather was virtually unblemished. I loved the colour too, Arctic Blue with a Saville Grey leather interior. These were the good points.

The drawbacks were that age had taken its toll on the suspension, brakes and steering. It was like driving a burst couch with only a vague idea of where the steering was pointed or would take you. Hence my search for a firm that could modernise and improve the weak points while still retaining and improving on what Jaguar had intended. Enter KWE.

What kind of reception do you receive when driving your XJS?

I’ve been fortunate to own and drive a selection of lovely and desirable modern cars. However, never have I owned a car that people liked to talk about more than the XJS. Younger people want to know what it is. Many people want to talk about the one they had or the car that a friend or boss had that they admired. It is impossible to fill the car up with fuel without having some sort of conversation about the vehicle.

Want an XJS for yourself? Find out more about our full range of services and engineering expertise.

‘Historic’ XJS now tax-free as HMRC cut-off extends to modern classics

If you didn’t think classic car ownership could get any better at the moment, there’s yet more good news for pre-HE Jaguar XJS owners.

Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) rolling cut-off date for historic vehicle tax exemption, means that all cars built before 1st January 1976 will be officially tax-free from April this year.

This means that so-called ‘modern classics’ are now to be described as ‘historic’ in line with the updated rules.

Original launch poster: Pre-HE XJS cars will be tax exempt from April 2016

Original launch poster: Pre-HE XJS cars will be tax exempt from April 2016

“1975 was undoubtedly a stellar year for new car launches, and their new found tax exemption not only feels overdue, but also inherently right”, comments Classic Car Buyer.

The reduced running costs will help to attract even more eager enthusiasts to the growing classic car market, who will help to preserve these wonderful vehicles, ensuring greater variety on the roads amongst a sea of modern vehicles.

As the Jaguar XJS turned 40 last September, it continues to pick up momentum as a desirable classic car, and the newfound tax-free status of the 1975-76 models is more than likely to strengthen its position as an affordable alternative to modern marques.

Although the majority of XJS owners will not benefit right away, here’s hoping that the exemption will roll on, and more classic Jaguar enthusiasts will continue to benefit year on year.

Jaguar XJS: An affordable alternative that exudes individuality

If you’d like to find out more about the Jaguar XJS, or to arrange a test drive, get in touch with one of our engineering experts. Sample the true driving pleasure of a classic car and stand out on the roads.

For more information email info@KWECars.com, follow us on Twitter or ‘like’ our Facebook page.

Six of the best classic car shows in 2016

As 2016 has been named World Motoring Heritage Year by FIVA, classic cars are to be celebrated around the world, with the UK being no exception. Planning a year of motoring-based merriments to celebrate this landmark? Look no further than our definitive guide to the best classic car shows in 2016.

The London Classic Car Show – 18-21 February, ExCel London

London Classic Car Show

London Classic Car Show

The London Classic Car Show is the must attend event for any discerning classic car owner, expert or enthusiast. Bringing together an international celebration of the very best dealers, manufacturers, car clubs and products, it’s the perfect day out for all. This year’s event is set to be double the size of the inaugural 2015 show, with more cars than ever being showcased. The show will also feature cars from world’s top six car-producing nations.

http://www.thelondonclassiccarshow.co.uk/the-show.

Practical Classics Restoration & Classic Car Show – 5-6 March, NEC Birmingham

Restoration Classic Car Show

Restoration Classic Car Show

Officially the UK’s fastest growing classic car event, over 19,000 enthusiasts attended last year’s show, bringing together all aspects of classic motoring under one roof. From barn finds and project cars, to restorations and pristine marques, the Restoration Classic Car Show boasts an impressive selection of the finest classic cars in the UK. The NEC will be filled with over 350 specialist exhibitors and around 700 classic cars from clubs up and down the country.

http://www.necrestorationshow.com/.

Donington Historic Festival – 30 April – 2 May, Donington Park Derbyshire

Donington Historic Festival

Donington Historic Festival

The Donington Historic Festival is one of the biggest fixtures on the international historical racing calendar. Join the thousands of spectators as your favourite classic sports cars battle it out on the track, and get up close and personal with free access to the paddock. There will also be huge numbers of classic car club displays, auto jumble and memorabilia stalls.

http://www.doningtonhistoric.com/.

Goodwood Revival – 9-11 September, Chichester

Goodwood Revival

Goodwood Revival

The Goodwood Revival is set to be as popular as ever this year, as this year’s theme will be ‘Full Throttle – The Endless Pursuit of Power’. The Revival features classic cars from 1948-1966, with visitors encouraged to dress up in era-appropriate clothing. This year’s Goodwood Revival will honour the late Sir Jack Brabham, on the 50th anniversary of his becoming the only driver in F1 history to claim the World Championship in a car bearing his own name.

https://grrc.goodwood.com/section/goodwood-revival/.

Footman James Manchester Classic Car Show – 17-18 September, Event City Manchester

Footman James Classic Car Show

Footman James Classic Car Show

The Footman James Classic Car Show is one of the largest in the country. The exhibition space will be crammed full with hundreds of motoring icons ranging right through the ages, from some of the earliest vehicles ever made, through to pre-war cars, 50s, 60s, and 70s classics, as well as modern classics from the 80s and 90s. The classic car show will also include trade stands, auto jumble, restoration demonstrations, and dream rides.

http://www.manchesterclassiccarshow.com/.

Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show – 11-13 November, NEC Birmingham

Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show

Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show

There’s a mouth-watering array of classic cars on display at the Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show. Whether you’ve a passion for traditional British classics, vintage motors, historic motorsport, European exotica, American muscle, or prefer the more modern retro classics, you won’t be disappointed. Take a nostalgic trip down memory lane and enjoy the cars from years gone by.

http://www.necclassicmotorshow.com/.

Arrive in style in your own classic car

Make a bold impression, as you turn up to events in this year’s most desirable classic car – the Jaguar XJS. At KWE Cars we have many years’ experience restoring and reengineering classic cars to better than new quality. For more information, please contact us on info@KWECars.com.

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Looking for a list of Jaguar-specific events happening near you? Visit the Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club’s website: http://www.jec.org.uk/events.html.