1997 Jaguar XK8 4.0


Fun, stylish and worth owning


The tail lights have a problem where the harness attaches to the light assembly, and trying to find a new harness end is next to impossible.

The stereo system sounds like the rear speakers are blown, and of course they are not easy to get to, so I have to wait until I have time to remove the rear seat and side panels to fix that as well.

Some of the plastic interior trim pieces are cracked or broken, especially in the seats like the covers at the lower seat where it's hinged, and the trim where the lever is to disengage the seat to access the back, and once again the parts are next to impossible to find.

General Comments:

Now that the bad is out of the way, the upside is that this car handles great, and when you put the tranny in Sports mode, this car flies. It is quick and responsive, and of course is rolling art.

For the original sticker price of 73K, they could have used better parts on it, or at least made them easy to obtain, but it seems that every higher end car I've owned had its fair share of quirks, with the exception of my Infinity Q45 T, which was the perfect car, and I never had to spend a dime on, but falls short in the fun department, whereas the Jag rates a solid 8 for joy of driving.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th January, 2012

1999 Jaguar XK8 Convertible 4.0L


I love it, but am tired of these mechanical problems


Bad relay for oxygen sensor.

I've had to replace the battery every 2 to 3 years.

I had to replace the alternator and battery.

General Comments:

I have been told by a mechanic that the battery problem is caused by a crimp in the hood frame seals at the top of the windows.

A second mechanic said once the engine is turned off, there is no drain on the battery from the windows not reaching the top of the seal.

I wonder if anyone else has ever had this problem?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 29th March, 2011

12th May 2015, 17:05

The windows are not supposed to go all the way up. Check your manual... they only go up all the way after you get in.

1999 Jaguar XK8 V8


People will envy you


Battery problems being that no other battery fits except an interstate.

Restricted performance costs a whole lot to fix. It means the car is in safe mode and horsepower and speed are hindered.

Very small in the cab.

Anything you need for the car will leave a huge hole in your pocket. If you want it done right.

General Comments:

Great chick magnet.

Amazingly smooth ride. Fast and a lot of power.

Great sound system and safety.

Overall I love this car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th July, 2009

26th Jan 2011, 19:25

Motorcraft BXT 49 battery fits the '99 XK8 convertible. It has 850 cold cranking amps and has a 36 month warranty.

21st Nov 2011, 22:53

The only way to economically own a car like this, or most German or Italian marques, is to work on them yourself.

1998 Jaguar XK8 Convertible 4.0 V8


A high maintenance mistress


- Had to upgrade to the third generation timing chain tensioners. Replaced leaking cam cover gaskets while it was all apart. $2500. Had to take the car back about 9 months later to replace those leaking seals yet again.

- Throttle Body Position Sensor. $800.

- Power Steering pump. $750.

- Convertible top is very slow and needs fluid.

- Has an intermittent starting problem that has left me stranded several times, dealer could not figure the problem out, finally figured out that it would still start in Neutral. The dealer still is stumped, but at least I'm not stranded anymore.

- Antenna is currently broke, $160 to fix.

- E-brake does not work.

- Some of the console buttons do not light up at night anymore.

- Needs control arm bushings, ball joints, etc. $1000 or so.

All this in just about 15 months of ownership.

General Comments:

Well, I'm torn. After having Jags in the family for 40 years, I'm very inclined to say they haven't come as far as most people would like to believe. I absolutely love driving my XK8, it oozes charm and charisma, but it's plagued with quality and reliability problems after just ten years. Many plastic interior bits starting to break or already broke, squeaks and rattles, iffy climate control not always working as it should. Our ten year old Mercedes E-CLASS on the other hand, with even more miles, still looks and drives exactly the way it did when we bought it new. I think my 1992 Jaguar XJS may have felt of a higher quality.

The car performs nicely, not the smoothest V8, but it sounds wonderful and pulls hard once the VVT kicks in above 4k. The car is much faster than my old 1992 XJS V12, but I think a 6 litre XJS with the four speed auto would trounce the XK8 at highway speeds. Handling is very nice with little body roll.

It's a very fun car to drive, nice to be seen in, but I'm sad that as of 1998 Jaguar still couldn't build a reliable/quality car. No matter what happens, I always come back to Jaguar, so I hope they're finally building them right in 2009. Guess I'll find out when I can finally afford a used one in a few years.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th February, 2009

20th Feb 2010, 03:24

I had a V12 6 liter 4 stage auto 1994 XJS and no, it would not beat the XK8. It was, for all its engine size and theoretical improvements on the old 5.3 liter V12 (had a couple of them too), a disappointingly slow car.

One never did the "drag off at lights" game, as chances are, you wouldn't do so flash.