Thursday, August 6, 2015

Survived: 1976 Jaguar XJ6 Coupe

There is a fine line between a survivor car and one that has somehow managed to far.  This next car might blur that line a bit and has survived because it is rare/desireable, but...will the next owner be forced to restore it?  Find this 1976 Jaguar XJ6 Coupe offered for $4,500 in Norco, CA.  Tip from FuelTruck.

The Series II Jaguar XJ continued the tradition of its predecessor as the quintessential British saloon car from the 1970s.  Jaguar sold a coupe version of the XJ from 1976 through 1978 but it was overshadowed and outsold by the modern looking XJ-S released in 1976.  Needless to the say that makes the 9,400 car run of XJ coupes somewhat rare and the market demands a premium...unless it looks like a bunch of cost for the next owner.

A little bit of rust/patina adds character to a survivor, but when you get rust in spots that are difficult to fix, it becomes an issue and the car will need an expensive restoration. Rust in the middle of a door panel (or rockers) is relatively easy to patch, but rust in the windshield mounting lip is going to be a much bigger issue -- you'll have to remove the windshield, dash, reform metal, so you've got to budget hours of high dollar labor for the rust you can 100% more.  Could you drive this thing for a year or two and just sell as is? Sure...but if that rust gets any worse, you might find yourself looking at a big repair bill before someone will take it off your hands. 

[Ed CFlo: I repaired very similar windshield frame / cowl rust in my beige Volvo 242, using junkyard donor sheetmetal, a dremel tool, a MIG welder, and a few weekends. Largest cost by far was for the new windshield that went in to replace the pitted original. DIY cost was under $300 (not counting the welder) so this fetching XJC looks mighty tempting to me despite, or perhaps due to, the rust.]

See a cheaper XJ coupe?


  1. This coupe was the prettiest of the series for me. They dropped my uncles off the rack somehow when it was a year old and totaled it.....probably a gift in disguise.
    Now back to one of the Summers prettiest days in north east Ohio.

  2. One of my fav's

    - Gianni

  3. ~ I've owned and loved two XJ Coupes and nearly bought a third. One was stock engine, the other high horsepower SBC. They're still among the best looking Jaguars in my eyes. Hard to keep the rust demons at bay but worth the effort.

  4. This one is ironic for me because I own nearly the same car in similar (though better) condition. I'd say mine is one notch up condition-wise (maybe two). I've had the car for 5 years and I'm always on the fence about keeping vs. selling. I think if I found the right Jag-enthusiast buyer, I'd consider cutting it loose.

    As a slight correction to the info provided above, the coupe was available from 1975 to 1977 with some leftover 1977 cars being sold as 1978s. No one can seem to come to consensus on exact total production, but it is under 10,000. Mine being a first year 1975 car, it is one of few smog exempt in California, a big plus over the 1976 car listed above. Another interesting tidbit... the car was also sold as a Daimler with a revised grille, but not in the US.

    Mine is also all original and unrestored. It still has the 4.2 inline-6. It's a good driving car but definitely not perfect. I'm the second owner but the car has been in my family since new (purchased in 1975 by my grandfather off the showroom floor). It's a California car with blue plates and it is 99.99% rust free (tiny area of surface rust in a lower quarter panel). Luckily, mine doesn't have rust in the windshield surround like this car. Also, I'm lucky to have a car that's not painted somewhere between beige and baby shit like this car. The one I have is white with the black vinyl top and a red interior. Good chrome too.

    The cost of restoration would be entirely prohibiting for me now or any time in the realistic future. I don't think a fully restored/perfect, unmodified version of this would crack $25-30K at auction. My car is a driver and that's how I use it, so I'm not really concerned about restoration. It could use some refreshing, but that's opening a can of worms. Where do you start, where do you stop?

    I've never driven one of these with a SBC, but it does well with the 4.2. It's a deceptively large and very heavy car and you start to notice it when putting it through the paces. It handles well for what it is but stopping does take a good distance and prior planning. One thing to note is it does have the Jag IRS with inboard rear disc brakes that hot-rodders always seemed to covet/borrow.

    The reason I've considered selling is because even though I like the car, I don't think I love it. It's not really a car I would have chosen for myself. I think it's gorgeous, and that's why it's still in my possession, but I'm more into other (smaller Euro and American) types of cars. Plus it's a gas hog. I think the two tanks combined hold about 26 gallons, but I probably see an average of 10-12 mpg. I'm just guessing. I don't want to track it and get depressed over the actual mpg. I live where gas is some of the priciest in the country.

    Another interesting item about these cars is that the doors were custom made in the Coventry factory out of two standard XJ doors each. They cut and welded two doors to make one longer coupe door. Talk about time consuming and expensive. I've never had my door panels off, but apparently you can see the welds from the inside. The doors are very heavy.

    Besides it's good looks, I think sentimentality and guilt are what make me keep it. I know I'm not alone here with getting attached to cars, even those you don't really want to keep. I've even struggled with the decision to sell off cars I hated owning/driving. Cars I wanted to just set on fire and walk away from. It's hard to get past the thought of "I'll probably never find one like this again". There were one or two I probably shouldn't have sold, especially considering what I replaced them with. Anyway, that's my story about the XJ6C.

    1. Wow man I feel for you. I think you should clean yours up as best you can and get some pro pics of it, list it for sale at a price you can live with, kind of high I hope. Then when it sells to a Jag lover, you can buy a fun little Alfa or something that is more your style. I applaud you for keeping the car in the family but with the way the world works I'd rather see you enjoy your time in exactly what you want to be driving. I love the coupes, very elegant lines, While the Jag motors are delicious, I would drop in a stock simple LS1 T56 and work on a brake upgrade and enjoy the cruising.

    2. Your story has me developing a crush on your car.

    3. On my bucket list is an XJC with a sunoof .I've owned and driven a '73 four door thirty years ago. It blew a head gasket on the 405 near LA. Someday..,,,,.by the way white with a red interior sounds beautiful!

  5. Calling the Wheeler Dealers. Mike and Edd, where are you? The Velocity Network says you're in California. Please help save a fellow Brit.

    1. Pretty sure that Mike saying "hold out your hand" to a seller is the automotive sales world equivalent of having drinks with Bill Cosby.

    2. The California Wheeler Dealers were shot last winter and aired in the UK last spring. For some reason we have to wait 6 months here in the states to see the new season episodes. New UK episodes start on the 17th There are ways to watch the new ones before Velocity gets around to showing them...

      - Gianni

  6. The XJC's were one I tried to find when I was growing up in England (although they had a reputation as a "footballers car" in the 70's & 80's). I think this one is a little highly priced for the shape it is in, as the interior will need over $3k in parts alone on the low side, and more likely to reach $5k by the end to make presentable, and then the rust repair, and this still leaves it as a driver with new materials in the interior.
    I would be looking more at an offer of $2500-3k and even then it scares me (maybe because of seeing what the tin worm can do to these if left unabated...
    I do hope someone saves it


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