20k: 5-Speed Bliss: 1988 Jaguar XJS V12

The Jaguar XJS is far too often stripped of its sonorous V12 and forced to make do with a Chevy 350 mated to the stock GM TH400 slushbox.  Unfortunately, it is often the cheapest way to continue keeping the big  Malcolm Sayer & Doug Thorpe designed luxury coupe on the road…but it is a shame when the 12-cylinder engine is retired.  What if there was a way to up the fun on the big coupe without resorting to the needless Chevification of the world’s engine bays…maybe swap in a 5-speed manual gearbox?  Find this 1988 Jaguar XJS V12 here on eBay offered for $22,900 buy-it-now or make offer located in Southport, CT.

Owning an XJS requires a relationship with your local Jag mechanic.  Even if
you are handy with DIY, you still need a constant supply of
used-but-functioning switches for anything electrical that needs to have
electron flow shut on/off.  When running right they are fantastically fun on the open road and you’ll find yourself glancing behind for a glimpse of her curves as you hoof it in search for a pay phone or nearby repair shop. 

The gloriously complicated engine under the hood is a SOHC (per bank) 2-valve all-alloy 5.3 liter “HE” V12 rated at 262 horsepower and 290 ft-lbs of torque.  Wires, vacuum tubes, and fluid lines crisscross the engine bay like an ancient woven tapestry that modern science cannot recreate or understand.  The early XJS was available with a clutch pedal, but after the 1980 reboot, the only transmission was a 4-speed auto, but this car has had that issue solved.

Behold the wonder of a 5-speed manual inside of the Jaguar XJS. It will eliminate one source of electronic failure in the XJS and free you from the doldrums of autopilot driving. This might not have the fit and finish of a KWE produced XJS conversion…but, it also doesn’t have the pricetag. 

See another V12 powered luxo-barge with a clutch pedal? tips@dailyturismo.com