1993 Jaguar XJ40 4.0L gas from North America


Great and reliable car to own and drive


Engine control module at 166,200 miles; replaced (used) for $100.

Power steering hydraulic hose; replaced for $68.

Fuel pump wiring harness in side tank; replaced for $65 from the Denver Jaguar dealer where I bought the car.

Radio; replaced with a non-OEM (Pioneer).

Passenger window motor and engine thermostat; replaced by dealer under warranty.

Driver's seat badly worn needs replacement; all others near perfect.

Gets 20 MPG in town and 22+ highway on regular gasoline.

General Comments:

Always felt safe, comfortable, and that it was reliable just like the XKE.

After selling my XKE to my brother, I longed to buy an XJ6 and I did for $19,842.48.

Beautiful, luxurious to drive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th April, 2014

1993 Jaguar XJ40 XJ12 6.0 V12 from UK and Ireland


Fast... ? Sure. Durable...? Not really


Suspension parts simply don’t last. I’ve owned this car since it was practically new and noticed the ride start to deteriorate after about 40,000 miles. Shocks, bushings, ball joints, etc., get worn and loose and need replacing so often it’s ridiculous. The rear suspension makes an annoying rubbing noise when the temperature is below 10 Celsius, the result of a deeply buried subframe mount which needs replacing. However, its so expensive to replace, I can't justify it with my wife... I’m just going to have to grin and bear the noise on cold days.

The dealer tries to tell me I’m “hot rodding it” because the brake discs last only 30,000 miles. Nope. They’re just too small for the weight of the car. Also, the brake booster unit failed… a hugely expensive part, which I saved money on by replacing with a used unit.

I also have had problems with the power steering pump, the emissions control air pump, and the fuel pump, which makes a loud whine at certain times. To add insult to injury, these parts are priced about double a “fair price”.

Some of the replacement parts from Jaguar have also been very poor. A distributor cap with cracks in it. Shocks that leaked nearly immediately after installation…

The interior is not much better for longevity. The plastic in the dash area will randomly make a loud cracking noise… like a rock hitting the windshield. Hit a big bump, and you can actually see the dash vibrate and move. The door panels are only held on with three screws that fit into tin snaps and some supplemental rubber plugs. Of course these wear out, and then the door panels rattle. The thinnest pieces of the wood veneer only lasted about three years before cracking and literally falling apart.

The most ridiculous design fault is the door latch mechanism. It has plastic in critical areas that wears out after about the eighth year of regular use. Then the door won’t shut… or you’ll think it’s closed and locked, only to find that it will swing open going around a turn, or blow open at high speeds. I can barely believe Jaguar would have made something so dangerous… I’m sure there have been lawsuits around the issue.

The oxygen sensors were a big problem too. Every few thousand miles the check engine light would tell me that one of them had failed…. A recall fixed the problem with a better ground to the sensors.

The J-gate shifter is now wobbly, and the automatic lockout - to keep the car from starting in gear - has failed once.

General Comments:

I have read the other reviews by XJ12 owners. It seems their assessments and experiences with the car are roughly in-line with mine: The reliability, durability, quality - whatever you choose to call it - is only average to poor. No question about it. BUT, the performance and character of the car is wonderful. An odd combination.

Its funny to me, the V12 engine - which is what everybody assumes will be the unreliable part of the car - has been nearly flawless. It barely uses any oil, pulls like a train, never misses a beat. It has great sound, eats gas, and makes huge heat. But, aside from the usual maintenance, it has needed only a new crank sensor for the fuel injection metering, and a replacement radiator. The engine/transmission combination simply MAKES this car. Otherwise, its not worth the effort.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th May, 2004

2nd Jun 2004, 13:44

I agree with your comments about the interior. What's the point of building a great, smooth suspension, when the interior rattles and cracks over every bump? I hope Jaguar is taking comments like these to heart.

27th Apr 2005, 00:14

My experiences are different. I have a 1991 4.0L Sovereign (purchased 2 months ago) and NOTHING rattles or creaks, leather in great shape and only minor checking in the walnut on the console (and no rust anywhere). In fact everything on the car works perfectly (so far). The car has had 2 previous owners and has done 196,000kms. My only criticism so far is that the transmission is a little clunky (compared to my previous Series 1 XJ6). My jag mechanic is a fan of the 4.0L engine, he has another customer whose XJ40 4.0L engine has just clocked 470,000kms and has never been touched.

9th Jun 2005, 22:17

Even though the XJS is an older design with certain limitations (and is stupidly criticized as 'obsolete' by every automotive journalist who simply repeats what he has read elsewhere), there are huge advantages to the earlier build techniques in vehicle longevity... And interior quality is definitely one of those advantages over the XJ40 models... XJS's have it all over the sedans as far as interior assembly is concerned!

30th Jul 2007, 10:08

I recently purchased a previously owned 1993 XJ40 Sovereign with well over 200,000k on it. The car has had some obvious lack of care having a few scuffs and dings, not helped by a terrible polishing job... but it runs and drives like new. Everything is tight and rattle free. The interior has stood up to neglect and with a little cleaning and a dose of Jaguar's hide food looks simply brilliant. The car is smooth powerful and exhibits all that wonder that is Jaguar legend. I was told that Jaguars are expensive to keep and thirsty. I have found that it is neither. Maintenance is about the same as any other quality automobile, and a for fuel millage, while not a consideration when purchasing a Jaguar, it is suprisingly easy on fuel. All in all... I'm very pleased with the big cat.