Jaguar’s best selling XJ6 was revised and updated in 1979, based on a redesign by Pininfarina, with design updates such as flush fitting door handles, removal of the front quarterlight windows, a new, cleaner safety bumper design, and minor interior updates. Like the rest of the Jaguar lineup at the time, it was fitted with Jaguar’s excellent independent rear suspension creating an incredibly comfortable luxury car. The car was also fitted with a Bosch designed fuel injection system replacing the earlier carburetted setup. In the United States, the car was only available with a Borg Warner 3 speed automatic transmission and all cars were also fitted with cruise control and an electrically operated sunroof, while in Europe you could get the same body with the 5.3 liter V12 as well as smaller displacement engines. European cars were also available with 5-speed manual gearboxes. In 1984, Jaguar regained independence from what remained of British Leyland, and the quality of the cars improved significantly, though the Series 3 left production in 1986 in Europe and 1987 in the US. This car was one of the first British classic cars I purchased and I’ve always loved the design of these cars. When I bought this car, it was suffering from issues with the changeover valves that allowed the driver to switch between the two fuel tanks. A previous owner had also severely lowered the car by cutting the rear springs and torching the front ones, negatively impacting the
suspension and handling. After buying the car, I rebuilt the brake system, replaced the springs and shocks, as well as fixed the changeover valve issues. The car then went through a rolling restoration in which I had it repainted, had the seats recovered, replaced the carpet and headliner, reveneered the dash, replaced all the rubber seals in the car and fixed a multitude of minor problems to get the car running as reliably as it should. The car is now pretty reliable and is one of the nicest driving cars I own. As these cars do not like to sit, it took a fair amount of work to get it running properly again. If I had a complaint it would be that the stock Borg Warner automatic is sluggish and doesn’t suit the Jaguar XK engine as well as it should. Having fitted a manual 5 speed gearbox to my Series 2 coupe, I suspect that an updated 4 speed automatic or a manual would significantly transform the car for the better, though might require regearing the rear differential to make it work well. These cars are heavy and far more of a GT luxury cruiser than a sports car, but still drive and handle very well, especially when compared to the contemporary American entries in the luxury market. The suspension is incredibly comfortable and the car drives effortlessly over long distances without any driver discomfort, making this an excellent choice for an everyday classic car.