XJS & XJ from KWE Cars
Classic Spirit Reborn
+44 (0) 1635 30030

Powertrain differential – you are the weakest link!

While external crash damage to a vehicle is clearly noticeable, other parts are less so and therefore require thorough checks and repairs before a car is deemed roadworthy and safe to drive.

A car’s powertrain comprises several important components that are prone to serious damage if a vehicle is unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident.

In most modern vehicles the powertrain includes the engine, transmission, drive shaft, differential and the final drive. Together, these components transmit the engine’s power through to the road surface.

Jaguar XJS differential

Our workshop technicians have been kept particularly busy recently with two Jaguars XJSs that were both involved in serious accidents. In each vehicle, part of the powertrain (namely the differential), had suffered serious internal damage.

The differential allows the outside wheels of a vehicle to rotate faster than those on the inside while still transmitting power to both. This is necessary when a vehicle is required to turn, allowing the wheel that is traveling around the outside of the turning curve to roll farther and faster than the inside one.

(This fascinating video from the 1930s explains the principles of the differential gear)

How differential gears work

In one vehicle, part of the gearing teeth on the differential had broken off causing a terrible noise as they were caught up in the mechanism; the other caused the limited slip clutches to fail resulting in one of the rear wheels to skid on every corner – unnerving to say the least!

Differential damage can be caused when a car is struck head-on or from the rear. When this happens, and the gearbox is in Park, the only thing stopping the car from moving away is the ‘tyre-wheel-halfshaft-differential-propshaft-gearbox’ chain. Surprisingly, the differential is the weakest link in this chain.

If the gearbox is not in Park, there’s usually enough inertia in the chain to result in damage caused by a strong collision, even before the wheels begin to roll forwards or backwards.

Our advice to you is that if you are aware that an unavoidable rear end shunt is about to happen, apply as much braking as possible while obviously paying due attention to your own personal safety, and to the safety of any passengers. This will, to a certain extent, protect the differential.

If you know, or suspect that your Jaguar XJS has been involved in a collision then it’s essential to have a thorough safety inspection carried out by expert technicians.

For all used classic Jaguar and Aston Martin cars, we carry out a comprehensive two-hour, on-site condition assessment. For more information, visit our website here.

 

Differing differentials

Unsure of your differential differences? We list the various specifications below, courtesy of jag-lovers.org.

Salisbury 4HU Powr-Lok

From 1976-1985, the differential was a Salisbury 4HU Powr-Lok that came with either 3.07:1, 3.31:1 (1976-1982), or 2.88:1 (1982-1985) ratios.

DANA

From 1985-1987, a 2.88:1 DANA unit was used for the V12. This unit can be distinguished in that the bearings on the output shafts are held in place with three bolts; the differentials both before and after these years have five bolts. It also has no drain plug.

GKN Power Lock

Beginning in 1987, there was a differential referred to as the GKN Power Lock with a 2.88:1 ratio.

‘This is a man’s world’ – or is it? Why women love classic cars too

The world of classic car ownership is often presumed to be a bit of a boys’ club. One woman who owns several classic cars, Carolyn Aylmer, has said that her Ferrari 348 ‘attracts a lot of attention from men, who of course assume it isn’t mine.’ There is an increasing number of women in the industry, however, who prove that women enjoy owning and driving classic cars just as much as men do. Nadine Katz, who specialises in insuring classic cars, is one of them, saying that ‘a lot of women own their own cars… some even build cars; they know so much about the mechanics.’. A recent survey has revealed that a quarter of the UK’s classics are owned by women.

Car dealer Joe Macari has said that, in his experience, ‘women buyers’ tastes are very different to men’s… pretty cars will always sell.’ Are they so very different, though? We wanted to learn more about why women enjoy owning and driving classic cars. Many of our customers are women, so we turned to them to find out. We invited Jaguar enthusiasts Rachal McHale and Jeannette Hartley to tell us what they love about their classic cars.

Rachal McHale XK8 #2

Rachal McHale with her Jaguar

The overall look of classic Jaguars was one of the most important features for Rachal. She loves the styling, describing them as ‘gorgeous, elegant and sleek’ with ‘curvy cat-like lines.’ The fact that they are ‘quintessentially British’ is also important to her. One of Jeannette’s favourite things about her Jaguar XJS is its British engineering, and the fact that Jaguar creates jobs for people as the UK’s largest automotive employer.

Both of them agreed that the driving experience was another key factor in their decision to buy a Jaguar XJS. Rachal loves the ‘smooth, easy drive,’ and the fact that the car has ‘the ability to really fly if required.’ Jeannette appreciates that her Jaguar is ‘lovely to drive, comfortable.’

They would both choose a classic car over a contemporary car any day of the week. Rachal notes that classic cars have ‘a strong sense of personality and style – you don’t get that with a Vauxhall Astra…’ and Jeannette appreciates the superior quality and comfort of a classic car.

Furthermore, they both recognise the excellent investment opportunities offered by the Jaguar XJ and XK series. Not only are these models holding their value, but with the right care and attention from a reputable classic car restorer, owners will benefit from rising prices.

Interestingly, both of them think of their Jaguars as feminine. Rachal said that, for her, ‘Jaguars are most definitely feminine,’ although she feels that overall, the brand is male-orientated. Jeannette describes her car as ‘a real lady’ and has fondly nicknamed ‘her’ Lady G. Perhaps this is a reflection of the strong bond and identification between a classic car owner and their treasured car.

It seems that women choose classic cars, particularly the Jaguar XJS, for the same reasons that men do – the beautiful design, excellent engineering, and phenomenal driving experience. It is not a man’s car, or a woman’s car – it is a driver’s car. Rachal and Jeanette’s experiences with their re-engineered Jaguars demonstrate the universal joy of driving a classic car.

What is your favourite thing about your classic Jaguar? Let us know!

KWE currently has a selection of classic Jaguar XJs for sale. See here for more information.

A real head turner – Low-mileage V12 XJS convertible for sale

Jaguar XJS V12 convertible (1992)

The roof is down, the wind is in your hair and all that lies in front of you is the open road and the perfectly tuned V12 engine of our latest Jaguar XJS offered for sale.

Solent Blue with a cream leather interior and American Walnut veneers. DSCF2849-S

We’re selling this superb example of a 1992 V12 XJS convertible on behalf of one of our clients. It’s been given the full KWE treatment with our full suspension, brakes and steering renewal and upgrade package, providing that familiar smooth and comfortable ride you’d expect from all of our fully-restored classic Jaguar cars.

With only four previous owners, this low-mileage XJS has just over 40,000 genuine miles on the clock. Its exterior is matched by the quality of workmanship and time spent on its interior. Finished in Jaguar Solent Blue with a cream leather interior and American Walnut wood veneers, this superb convertible sports car is guaranteed to turn heads whenever and wherever it’s driven.

For a full suite of pictures please click here.

For pricing and detailed service information, visit our website here.

You can see the full range of our cars for sale here.

Car of the month: Jaguar XJS V12 coupé

Our Jaguar XJS restoration skills were fully utilised during one of our latest projects, which features as our ‘Car of the month’ for March 2016.

Fully restored Jaguar XJS V12 coupé

Fully restored Jaguar XJS V12 coupé

The new owner of this stunning example of a fully restored XJS V12 coupé requested that we first find and purchase the donor car. (more…)

Suave and sophisticated – that’s the Jaguar XJC

The Jaguar XJ and XJS are widely acknowledged as one of the most beautiful luxury saloon and all-round accomplished sports cars ever made. So, it’s no surprise that the team at KWE is always on the look out for challenging new projects to work on.

With our engineering expertise and passion for Jaguar cars, we’re able to offer a high-quality restoration service. Our aim is to restore all of our Jaguar XJS and early XJ saloons cars to a ‘better than new’ standard. (more…)

Hold on tight (to your XK8)

Around the same time as the first Jaguar XJ6 (series 1) rolled off the production line, another Great British classic was born. In 1970, the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) entered the music scene with its ambition to create modern rock songs with classical overtones.

In some ways, perhaps this is similar to the Jaguar XK8 – a contemporary twist given to a classic vehicle. Underneath the XK8’s modern curves lies a classic not too dissimilar to its XJS predecessor. (more…)

Classic car news round up (December-January)

Happy New Year from all at KWE Cars! To celebrate, we’ve compiled a list of the top classic car news stories from the last couple of months… Still good news for classic car owners!

How to invest in classic cars and dodge the pitfalls: From buying at auction to putting money in a fund (This is Money)

Classic cars have been one of the best performing alternative assets in the past year and going back further than that. Investors and enthusiasts have seen returns of up to 487% on classic motors such as Ferraris and Jaguars over the past decade.

The returns can be miles ahead of shares and property, but what are the best ways to invest and how can you make sure your investment doesn’t breakdown?

Classic can vintage cars more desirable than ever (Live Trading News)

Classic and Vintage cars are proving to be excellent investments. Classic cars were the top-performing asset class in property consultancy Knight Frank’s Luxury Investment Index in Y2015, and they rose by 16% in Y2014.

The index rose overall by 10% last year, growing by a very healthy 205% over the past 10 years. Classic and Vintage cars have been the strongest performer over both the long and short term.

The Historic Automobile Group (HAGI) known for its classic car indexes, has shown that the market for the very rarest of classic cars has risen by 487% over the past 10 years, and grew 16% last year, following the index’s 47% rise the year before.

Looking for a classic car? How about a Jaguar XJS?

Looking for a classic car? How about a Jaguar XJS?

10 classic car events not to be missed in 2016 (Classic Driver)

As we enter a new year, our thoughts turn to the 2016 events season. So grab that calendar, and prepare to note down the ‘must-attend’ meetings this year…

‘Passion investing’ in classic cars is gaining speed (CNBC)

So-called passion investing — allocating wealth toward high-value collectibles — has been around for about 10 years and is now expanding into the classic car arena.

Classic cars are gaining attention due to their nearly 500% returns over the past decade, outpacing art and wine by more than 100%, as reported by the Knight Frank Luxury Investment Index.

Auction highlights 2015 – this is what $161.8m worth of classic cars looks like (Classic Driver)

It’s been a year seemingly crammed with auctions and, while some trends are in line with those from last year, overall it’s a fairly different picture. Have a look at the top 10 most expensive cars sold at auction in 2015…

This ex-Juan Manuel Fangio 1956 Ferrari 290 MM sold for $28,050,000

This ex-Juan Manuel Fangio 1956 Ferrari 290 MM sold for $28,050,000

New year, new classic car?

If you’re looking to get your 2016 off to a flyer, get in touch with the classic car engineering experts at KWE Cars. We’re experts in restoring Jaguar XJ-based models back to ‘better than new’ quality. Call us on 01635 30030, ‘like’ us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.