Jaguar XJ8 Reviews from Australia and New Zealand

2004 Jaguar XJ8 X350 3.5 V8

Year of manufacture2004
First year of ownership2007
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission 3.5 V8 Semi-Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired32000 kilometres
Most recent distance41000 kilometres
Previous carFord Falcon

Summary:

I intend on keeping it forever - its motoring perfection!

Faults:

Brake pads when bought were incorrect - rattled. This is because new ones were fitted as part of the complying process. Dealer blew his nut when he found out what the importer had done and replaced with genuine Jaguar pads at his cost.

Rear part of driver's seat cushion height adjustment moves only a little bit each time you operate the button - must be a dead fuse or similar - hardly worth mentioning and no plans to fix.

Other than that its been completely un-Jaguar in reliability - perfect in other words. Not a rattle to be heard.

General Comments:

Picked up in as new condition ex-Japan for a sinful price. Feel sorry for the Japanese guy who would have lost over $100,000 on it. It wasn't even properly run in when we purchased it - as the fuel economy has improved significantly.

Hopefully I will never have to sell this car. We have owned it for 6 months and loved every drive in it. I cannot fault this beautiful car. It has timeless elegant styling which gets complemented on by complete strangers, unsurpassed comfort and it drives beautifully regardless of whether you feel like wafting or racing. Fuel economy has settled out at 27.1 miles per gallon which is incredible for a luxury V8, given that the air conditioning is always on and a lot of my driving is stop-start. After 15 years of driving reliable, inoffensive Ford Falcons (EA GL, then EL Fairmont, then BA XR6 Turbo), I have rediscovered the joy of driving a Jag, without the pain of owning a temperamental British rust bucket.

Why anyone would choose the competition over this evades me - I'm in love. Have always loved Jags, but gave up on them when the running costs on our 79 Daimler XJ6 Sovereign became unbearable - at 12 years old. However on the new X350 it is clear that the build quality and intelligent design is up to the best of European standards. I am confident that this car will, with the proper care it deserves, last for decades.

The 6 speed ZF auto transmission is sublime, I strongly recommend you go for any of the vehicles to which it is fitted over those without. The air suspension gives that uniquely Jaguar experience - hot air balloon ride and a straight line through corners. Best tech features are the touch screen (so easy to use), the heated seats all round, adjustable pedals, the automatic wipers and remote window open and close.

The only sacrifices one has to make with this car is the space - which is okay if you have two six-footers in a row, but no taller, and shallow boot leaves something to be desired, and parking in town - this is one big cat. That said, it is still, by a country mile, the best car I have owned. I'll drop a comment in at the start of '09 as to how its going then.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th February, 2008

11th May 2009, 18:02

Update from owner: At 49000 km have had no problems at all. It tends to show dirt very easily (Jaguar Racing Green) so come spring will go beyond the normal and do a full cut and polish, followed by two coats of progressively finer polish, to bring up a nice repellent sheen. Would like to hear from other owners who have experienced problems so I can perform preventative maintenance.

Value has plummeted. Have seen comparable for $30000. Sort of wish we had bought NZ new or a Singapore import for the 'euro style' boot lid with wider number plate surrounds. But happy with the car and as we paid bottom dollar in the first place we haven't really lost anything. I expect when the new XJ comes out it will drop a little more, then steady out, then maybe climb a bit as it becomes a modern classic - end of an era. All the more reason to keep it immaculate.

My advice to anyone considering these cars is to grab a used one now, the value is outstanding and the running costs are no more than a modest medium-large family car and certainly less than any SUV. Look out for dodgy dealers though - it is worth paying the small premium for one from the main dealer. Usually you can use the cheaper ones from other dealers as examples to haggle with.

2005 Jaguar XJ8 X350 3.5V8

Model year2005
Year of manufacture2005
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 3.5V8 Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.4 / 10
Distance when acquired10000 kilometres
Most recent distance20000 kilometres
Previous carLexus LS400

Summary:

Great all alloy construction car; the best luxury cars of its class

Faults:

The warning light and sign came on occasionally (more like once every three months). It is warning about the light bulb and hand brake. However, it is only the computer management that sometimes cannot locate the equipment, but once the car starts moving, it will find the equipment and the light is gone.

I took her to my Jaguar dealer, and their nice mechanic assessed the car, and confirmed to me that there is nothing wrong with my car at all. This computer thing may make some owners annoyed, but if you get used to a Jag, it is a common thing and you must forgive them. However, in the last 5 months, no warning lights have come up again, and I believe that is a positive sign.

The car did not come with a Jaguar leaper due to the road safety regulations. However, I can put a Jaguar leaper on at my own expense (which I did). I believe that the dealer should be able to give them out and install for free, since it is a symbol of Jaguar in many countries (the regulation allows the owner to modify the car, which mean that he/she can put the leaper on anyway).

General Comments:

Jaguar XJ8 is an exceptional car. I bought the car from a Jaguar dealer during their sales for ex-demonstration cars (the car that are on display in their showrooms, and they let media people test drive them for reviews). The 10 month old car that I manage to buy was around 75% of the original price, but came with all full cover on both the servicing and mechanical warranty.

The car is amazingly powerful, and has very good fuel economy due to its all alloy body construction. The car is also very quiet at a high speeds.

In terms of fuel economy, I compared my Jag with my other cars with the same levels. My XJ8 costs $140 for full tank, and give 540 Kms driving range. My Mercedes Benz S350 costs exactly the same, but gives out only 470Kms, My Lexus LS400 costs the same, and took me only 400 KMs (I am only driving between my house and my office, which is 12 Kms each ways). The best one is my Volvo S80 (2.8 Turbo), which costs $125 and gives out 580 Kms (however, that car has the smallest engine).

The truth still remains that XJ8 is value for money, having a low depreciation, and exceptional status for the money (while my Lexus LS depreciates much quicker, and does not represent as much status).

The car interior is top of the line, I love the electronic handbrake; I don't need to do anything at all while parking on the hill.

The best thing about Jaguar is their exceptional service. Since I used most of the luxury cars in the past 20 years from Lexus, Volvo, Mercedes Benz, BMW, and Jaguar, I am able to say that Jaguar and Volvo have the best after sales service, and the most helpful mechanical service staffs (it is because both vehicles were under the same dealer in New Zealand). While, I took my car for a service, they are often give me a loan car that is either a Volvo V50/S60 or Jaguar X/S-Type. These cars might not be par with my S80 Volvo or XJ8 Jaguar (which is in the service), but for the loan car, it is an exceptional offer (I'm always getting a wee Toyota Corolla for taking my Lexus for a service, and an A/C Class for Benz).

The best part of Jaguar is their seating; the rear leg room is awesome, but the real gem is the heated front seat with heated steering wheel, which is really helpful on the bad winter days.

Compared to my S350 or LS400, driving a Jaguar XJ8 is much warmer, more comfortable, and I believe it is better. My S350 (2004) and LS400 (1999) did not have the heated seats, and that was not helpful on the snowy or rainy days. I am not being biased, as I still love my other cars, but I am being realistic about the after sales service, and the equipment and money.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st August, 2007

Average review marks: 8.9 / 10, based on 2 reviews