It’s a debate that is likely to go on amongst motoring enthusiasts for the foreseeable future: which are better – classic or modern cars? On the face of it, modern cars seem like the better option; they’re safer, cheaper to run and better for the environment, right? However, for those drivers looking for a sense of excitement and individuality – you can’t beat a quality classic.
The real question is: why choose a classic vehicle over a newer model?
Driving a classic car can be perceived negatively – particularly when it comes to the environment. Environmentalists sometimes view classic cars as being gas guzzling planet destroyers, due to their poor fuel efficiency. In reality, salvaging a classic car is in fact an excellent example of recycling – maximising the use of something rather than just disposing of it.
Keeping an old motor running, rather than just replacing it at the nearest opportunity, is sustainable and limits the amount of waste in our scrapheaps.
Owning a classic car is a sociable activity – more than just a hobby. With regular classic car shows and owners’ club meetings, there is always an opportunity to meet fellow motoring enthusiasts whilst showing off your prized possession.
Being a member of a classic car club isn’t just fun and games, they can also prove beneficial when it comes to obtaining technical information or sourcing service parts. A social network of classic car enthusiasts is sure to benefit your vehicle, and help to optimise its performance.
Owning a modern car can be frustrating, as its value depreciates rapidly within the first 12 months of ownership. Comparatively, a classic car is more likely to retain its value – it may actually increase if restored and maintained to a high standard. Many makes and marques are becoming increasingly rare, leading to a greater asking price.
In an article written by Autocar this month, the Jaguar XJS was second in a list of only five cars highlighted as having great investment potential right now.
You don’t have to worry about paying a hefty sum for cover, as policies tend to cost less for classic cars than for more modern vehicles. This is partly because classic cars tend to be more carefully maintained and driven far fewer miles than other vehicles, resulting in a lower number of claims.
Modern cars have become more and more alike – inside and out, and with only few exceptions have evolved into characterless if competent transport. Some motoring enthusiasts crave the individuality and driver satisfaction that only a classic design can provide. A classic car ensures that you stand out amongst the sea of monotone modern vehicles, receiving those second glances of appreciation.
Why drive a bland modern family vehicle when, for the same price, you can drive an effortlessly stylish classic car? KWE has created an affordable alternative by bringing the price for re-engineered classics down to that of new family saloons. In addition, we have developed the ride and handling of the 1980’s Jaguar XJ to put it in the forefront of executive saloon performance.
Road tax on classic cars is also considerably lower than on modern vehicles, and is limited to £230 per year regardless of engine type or size. Comparatively, with a new V8 Range Rover, for example, you can expect to fork out over £500 per year.
If this post has got you thinking about your next car, make sure you speak to the engineering experts. At KWE Jaguar, we have many years’ experience restoring classic Jaguars and Aston Martins to ‘better than new’ quality. Read our client testimonials, here.
It would appear the recent revival for 1970’s fashion isn’t just limited to the high street. This is good news for classic cars from the era and for us here at KWE. Over the last few months we’ve seen a rush of interest in the Jaguar XJS and have enjoyed an influx of customers coming to us for work on their seemingly-now-fashionable XJS cars. And as a direct result, we’ve taken on two more engineers in the workshop to help cope with the demand.
It’s not just about trends in fashion though – at last the Jaguar XJS is more widely recognised as a great investment opportunity. In an article written by Autocar last week, the Jaguar XJS was second in a list of only five cars highlighted as having great investment potential right now.
Don’t miss out on this opportunity!
If you are thinking about buying a classic Jaguar XJS, read our buying tips first. It shows you what to look out for and how to minimise restoration costs. Of course once you are a proud owner, we’ll happily help you restore the car to its former glory – take a look at the cars we are working on now.
For more information call KWE Cars on 01635 30030.
Spectre, the latest instalment from the Bond saga, is set for cinema release in November 2015. As with all James Bond films, there is a great deal of excitement centred around which vehicles will be on display. Spectre is unlikely to disappoint, as 007 is set to look as suave as ever as he continues saving the world.
In addition to the exquisite Aston Martin DB10 appearing in the film, Jaguar Land Rover will also be doing its part to help the British spy, supplying a Range Rover Sport SVR, Jaguar C-X75 and Defender Big Foot.
Rumours have speculated that the C-X75, driven by the film’s antagonist (played by Christoph Waltz), and the DB10 will be involved in a high-octane car chase through the streets of Rome.
Here at KWE we may not be experts in international espionage, but we do know a thing or two about restoring classic cars. We provide a bespoke service, reengineering your classic car to the highest standard and to your exacting requirements. While James Bond’s cars are usually four cylinders short of a real engine, the majority of the Jaguar XJSs we work on are V12s.
As well as the Jaguar XJS, we also specialise in the Aston Martin DB7, as the two marques share various structural and engineering similarities. Visit the service page on our website for more information.
We’ve also recently extended our services to include the Jaguar XK8 – 007’s XKR is the ‘souped-up’ brother of this model. With the same high quality workmanship, we can bring these fine cars back to as-new or better-than-new condition. Have a look at this sporty 4-litre V8 Jaguar XK8 we have for sale on our website; it might not have guns or rockets, but just two very careful owners.
Jaguar and Aston Martin are synonymous with 007, but this got us thinking – what’s your favourite James Bond vehicle of all time? Perhaps the classic Aston Martin DB5, which has appeared in many James Bond films, the XKR from Die Another Day, or maybe the XJ8 from Casino Royale? Let us know via Twitter or Facebook – we’d love to hear from you.
With the March equinox only a few weeks away, it won’t be long before we can all enjoy the pleasures of spring again and, if the weather permits, what can be more invigorating than a leisurely drive through the great British countryside?
In a poll of 2000 motorists last year, Shell named Britain’s favourite road as the A470 that runs through Snowdonia National Park and the Brecon Beacons in Wales. Snake Pass and the Cat and Fiddle Road in the Peak District were a close second and third. As these roads pass through some of the finest countryside the UK has to offer, it won’t surprise you to learn that in the same survey, the M25 was voted Britain’s least favourite drive!
Over half of the motorists polled said that a sunny day would inspire them to go for a drive on a familiar road, a further 21% said that discovering a new place would also be reason enough. So why not hit the road this spring and enjoy the familiar sights the season has to offer from the comfort and safety of a classic Jaguar XJS?
Where would you go?
We thought it would be an interesting idea to find out our customers’ favourite roads. Tell us the name of the road, and include details of the stretch you find particularly attractive. Don’t let the UK limit your choice; we know that many of our customers enjoy regular trips to the continent, so feel free to include roads in Europe as well.
If you have any photos please also send them through. Email your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our Facebook or Twitter pages. Once we have a collection of favourite roads, we’ll share a list of the most popular (or unusual!).
Let us prepare your Jaguar XJS for the challenging conditions some country roads can present. For details of our services, visit the KWE website at http://www.kwecars.com
Here are a few highlights from the classic car industry from the last few months….
Classic car experts have warned that chrome plating will disappear as a decorative feature from 2019 if new EU regulations come into force. The EU seeks to prevent the use of hexavalent chromium, which it views as a carcinogen and is on its list of banned substances.
The proposed substitute, trivalent chromium, has caused concern for plating companies as it’s not viewed as tough enough to withstand the rigours of everyday driving. Unlike hexavalent, trivalent does not self-repair – if the surface is scratched the part is likely to corrode.
As classic car parts are often no longer in manufacture, the ability to re-chrome existing parts is important for restorers. Unless an exclusion to the ban is sought and granted, this option will no longer be available to us in Europe.
Reaction to a proposal from the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs (FBHVC) to shift the cut-off for historic vehicle status to 30 years is revealed in an article by www.classiccarsforsale.co.uk.
The proposed shift will see 30-year old cars become eligible for vehicle exercise duty (VED) exemption. Currently only cars over 40 years old qualify for this status. The article reports mixed opinions on how this will affect the industry.
Jaguar Land Rover’s manufacturing success continues
The UK motoring industry is in a buoyant mood after news that Jaguar Land Rover is to create a further 1300 jobs at its manufacturing site in Solihull. The company recently announced it was adding a new model to its Jaguar portfolio, which will follow the Jaguar XE into production at new facilities within the world-renowned plant.
Collectively the size of 22 football pitches, the new state-of-the-art facilities bring the Jaguar brand to Solihull for the first time. The investment in the facility is the largest in its 70-year history and testament to the company’s aim of accelerating its industry-leading expertise in aluminium and lightweight technologies.
At a London press launch in September 1975, Jaguar unveiled its new sports tourer model – the XJS. Later this year, as we approach its 40th birthday, we’ll mark the occasion with a fitting celebration. Watch this space!
For more information on the history of this model, visit our website.
Winter can be a difficult time for any car owner, as the cold weather and icy conditions puts an extra strain on the vehicle. To help ensure your classic Jaguar runs smoothly during the winter months, we’ve put together a list of our top tips:
The XJS is not best suited to snowy winter weather, due to its relative heaviness and rear wheel drive. Fitting winter tyres, however, will dramatically improve your ability to drive in snow and ice. An example is Avon Ice Touring, typically £85 per tyre plus fitting. As an alternative, try reducing the tyre pressure by about 10%, creating a greater surface area to grip on the roads.
Easier said than done at this time of year. If you do drive on salty roads, quickly wash off any salt/mud residue in the wheel arches and sill ends as soon as possible. For further advice, read our post on how to keep rust at bay.
Regularly check your coolant additive (antifreeze) concentration using an antifreeze tester, which can be purchased from retailers such as Halfords. In the winter, the concentration should be at least 30%, rising to 50% in the north of England and Scotland where it’s colder. It is important to change the coolant every two years for conventional types, or every five years for OAT (red) additives. At KWE, we only use OAT additives on XJS and XJ saloons.
Upgrading your headlamps will give you greater visibility during the dark winter months. We’d recommend Xenon HID electronic lamps, and can fit a pair for £456. These lamps are powerful enough to punch through dirty headlamp lenses, making sure that road signs and cyclists are well illuminated.
A V12 engine can build up more friction when cold, contributing to the malfunction of many car batteries over the winter months. To counter this, keep the battery on trickle charge, or disconnect it entirely when not in use. We can fit a simple battery switch for just £15. As a precaution, it’s always a good idea to keep a spare battery and jump leads just in case.
In winter you must ensure a 30:70 concentration of antifreeze to water, otherwise the washer jets will freeze solid.
To do this, try and avoid water from getting into your car’s locks. However, if you do find yourself in this situation, use a hairdryer to carefully and gently melt the frozen locks.
To stop the winter weather from causing damage to your XJS’s exterior, keep things covered up on those particularly frosty days and nights. A good quality protective cover (like this one) will ensure that the weather does not penetrate your door seals and age your screen seals or convertible hood, while also keeping your windscreen clear of frost and ice.
To improve your car’s vision at night and keep rust at bay, we offer a special winter package for the Jaguar XJS, which also includes a winter service. For more details visit our website or call 01635 30030.
For this month’s ‘car of the month’, we’re rather proud to show you this beautiful 5.3 V12 Jaguar Coupe in the much-favoured part facelift body. It’s been in our workshop undergoing a full rebuild and is now ready to go to its new (and very excited) owner.
Its story began when our client saw a similar looking car on our website and asked us: “Can you build me one like that, but with a V12 engine?” A challenge we relish here at KWE! The result? A top class XJS, which we think you’ll agree really looks the part.
Here’s how we did it:
We sourced a good quality donor car in Solent Blue, stripped it back and resprayed it Meteor Red and fully rebuilt the engine, complete with new cooling system and renewed engine bay. We also fitted stainless steel exhausts with low-loss catalytic converters.
The interior was fully retrimmed with new magnolia leather, bird’s eye maple wood and cream carpet. We fitted a top-of-the-range audio system with flip out screen, satnav, Bluetooth and DAB, and high-end speakers.
The full list of work includes:
Whether it’s rebuilding, repairing or upgrading, we can help you design the specification for your classic Jaguar XJS car. For more information on our specialist services, call 01635 30030 or visit www.kwecars.com