1996 Jaguar Vanden Plas X300 from North America

Summary:

Best car I've ever owned

Faults:

Right rear wheel bearing had to be replaced. A common problem with these.

Front wheel bearings were also marginal so I replaced those as well.

The driver's seat memory didn't work when I bought the car. This is a fairly common problem. I bought a replacement module.

The radiator mounts disintegrated. Another fairly common problem, but it's a very easy fix.

The headliner started to fall down.

The Harmon/Kardon sound system is tricky, the volume changes slightly as you're listening to CDs and the rear bass speaker failed.

The paint on the top surfaces (roof, trunk, hood) fades with these cars, especially the darker colors. A good body shop can fix this for $1,800.00.

General Comments:

This 4.0 liter engine and the automatic transmission that Jaguar uses in these cars are probably the best they've ever made.

Other problems with these cars (which I have not experienced yet) are:

1. Automatic rear view mirror starts to leak fluid

2. The clock fails and you can no longer read the display

3. The small bulbs that illuminate the odometer blow out (a relatively easy fix)

In spite of the minor annoyances I listed, these X300s (1995-1997) Jaguars are one of the best they ever made! My car is going on 12 years old and if you ask me, that's a better than average track record for a car of that age compared to any other makes. NO MAJOR ENGINE PROBLEMS, is the big advantage which far outweighs the small problems!

The car handles well, the engine and transmission are perfect, the climate control system is so much better than the XJ40 (1988-1994 XJ6) or earlier Series III XJ6s.

I paid $7200.00 for this car in May of 2007 and don't regret it one bit.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th December, 2007

1996 Jaguar Vanden Plas 4.0 liter straight 6 from North America

Summary:

Buy it!

Faults:

I replaced the brakes pads and rotors (routine maintenance)

The memory option for driver seat position no longer works

The cup holder pops out occasionally like a 'jack-in-the-box'

General Comments:

In my opinion, you cannot find a better used car to buy. This is my second jaguar. I bought it for only $7K, which had depreciated from around $70K. To get a car this nice for under $10K is insane.

The car looks beautiful, and everyone notices it. The interior could not be any more comfortable - there are walnut trays that fold out in the rear seats, rear seat heaters, etc.

The best part of this car is driving it. First of all, it's extremely fast for a 10 year old car with a straight 6. It's officially listed 0-60 time is 7 seconds; however, I've timed myself several times in the 'Sport' gear, and it's more like 5.5 seconds. If you hammer it at 80mph, you're going 100mph a split second later. This car drives very smooth at any speed - it handles 100mph better than most cars handle 40mph. I recently drove a brand new (2007) Mercedes S550 for a month, and honestly, it has nothing on this car when it comes to smooth driving and handling.

A lot of people warn others about buying jaguars because of "high maintenance costs". This is only true if you take it to the dealer, which you should avoid doing. Every small city has a good import mechanic who isn't afraid to work on a jag. There are also plenty of good web sites for ordering jag parts at reasonable prices. If you're smart about your repairs (and there should not be very many), you can maintain an older jag just as easy as any other car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th September, 2007

1996 Jaguar Vanden Plas X300 AJ16 in-line six from North America

Summary:

The best used luxury car bargain in the world

Faults:

When the first cold day arrived this winter, I found myself with a car that would not start. I replaced the battery in the trunk. The car had been stored by the previous owner for 6 months and was not driven during that time. The battery was original to the car and was over 6 years old. I certainly cannot find and any fault with Jaguar for this. The 6 year old battery still "looked" like new.

After a rain shower one day, I repaired the wiper arm. The nut holding the wiper arm came loose, causing erratic wiper arm movements, and I repaired this by re-tightening the nut.

No other repairs have been required, or are needed. Everything works!

General Comments:

This is my very first Jaguar, and I absolutely love it.

This car is a "dream" to drive and a dream to ride in. It is so comfortable and roomy. The interior is tastefully appointed in luxurious leather and wood, and the fit and finish are all superb. The doors close crisply and firmly with just a slight nudge from a distance of only about 2 inches. I have to constantly caution people that there is no need to slam the doors.

The AJ16 engine has more than ample power and is very smooth. I love the sport switch for extending the shifts. The engine has no hesitation, and is extremely smooth.

For a large sedan, this car handles like a slot car.

I am confident that I will be able to afford to own this car for a long, long time.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th March, 2004

4th Sep 2010, 21:54

I have owned my 96 VDP for just less than a year now, and it is without a doubt the best riding car I've ever driven. It handles like a sports car, and has every luxury appointment you could want. I am the third owner, the car was originally a executive corporate car. I have done maintenance work on the car myself (brakes, shocks, belts etc.), no real concerns yet. Pretty good for a 125K mile car!

25th Dec 2010, 18:25

We bought our 1996 Jaguar XJ6 Vanden Plas last month with 69,400 miles, now has 70,550, just got home from a 600 mile three day road trip. She ran like new, no issues. We hope to enjoy her for many years as a second/weekend car. 12-25-2010.

1996 Jaguar Vanden Plas 4.0L V8 Supercharged from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

I like my Jag!

Faults:

I just had a little problem with the radio, one of the switches had some difficulty to work well.

Apart from that, I never had amechanical problem, my previous car, a BMW 7 series, had too much trouble, that's why I bought my Vanden Plas.

General Comments:

My Vanden Plas is reliable and comfortable.

The car and the comfort are smooth, the same thing for the suspension. I had a Jaguar E-type (a long time ago) and I was really fed-up with this lemon from 1969! I had almost everything, engine, transmission... The Vanden Plas is a big car and needs a lot of fuel!

The car is the same like a XJR, but the car is longer!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th June, 2001