ENGINE 3996cc/V8/DOHC POWER 290bhp@6100rpm TORQUE 290lb ft@4250rpm 0-60MPH 6.4sec TOP SPEED 156mph FUEL CONSUMPTION 22-24mpg TRANSMISSION RWD, five-speed automatic MoT 12 months from sale ODOMETER 97,000 miles
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?
The Jaguar XK8 may not have the firecracker pace of an XKR, but you’ll still be troubling modern hot hatches – and that’s in a car getting on for 20 years old. Though smooth most of the time, should you get a bit frisky with it the meaty 4.0-litre V8 will respond with a muffled growl and a thump in the back. And when you’re not being silly it’ll poodle around in near silence. The steering is customarily light but precise when you need it to be, and the brakes bring you to a halt predictably yet quickly. There’s no slop in the steering nor any peculiar noises or vibrations from the drivetrain or suspension. All in all, it feels mechanically sound and ready to reel off a grand journey.
The paint is largely OK, but it will require work to have it looking its best. There are swirl marks and orange peel paint effects here and there, and minor scratches and marks across a number of panels. All the alloy wheels have signs of corrosion or kerbing and the paint on the door frames is coming off in places. We couldn’t find any signs of the dreaded lacquer peel that afflicts so many of these cars, however. This XK wears Continental Sport Contact 2s, front and rear, and all have plenty of tread remaining.
HOW’S THE INTERIOR?
The cream interior is in average condition, though there are some dark creases to the leather seats (but thankfully, no rips). There are signs of wear to the leather parts of the steering wheel, marks to the door pulls and the driver’s side sill scuff plate has come loose. To make driving a little more challenging, the headlining has also started to come loose. On the upside, the wood panelling is largely free from scratches and cracks, and the stereo/tape cassette player works, as does the air conditioning.
UNDER THE BONNET
The long bonnet opens to a 4.0-litre V8 which appears to be in good, unmolested condition. It’s not concours but a big plus is that the inner wings and bulkhead are free from signs of corrosion. All the fluids were up to their maximum and none decided to leave the party early during our test. While there are books and MoT certificate print-outs with the car, there is no record of its service history or any other expenditure in the slim history file.
THE CCW VIEW
This Jaguar XK8 isn’t going to be winning any concours awards any time soon, but then it doesn’t cost a great deal either. Look at this as a rolling project and it starts to make sense – you’ll never make it make financial sense, but it’s a car that you can fix and enjoy at the same time. The lack of service history is a concern, but look past this and it makes for an intriguing project.
By no means perfect, but all the electrics work.
V8 seems sound, but there’s no history with it.