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Lot 436: 1978 Jaguar XJ-C

Fine Motor Cars and the Jaguar Legend, Coys (14 July 2007)

The XJC is the rare two-door version of the XJ6 four door saloon. When Sir William Lyons began styling exercises for the new XJ models in the mid 1960s, it was obvious that he had notions of a two-door coupe in mind for eventual production. Many of the early mock-ups were based on the two-door theme in various shapes, forms and sizes, and it would be the last Jaguar car to be designed by and built under Sir William Lyons. In 1969, Sir William took a reject 2.8 litre right hand drive XJ6 body shell and fashioned it into the XJC. It was tried with both 4.2 and 5.3 litre engines, with each version respectively known as XJ33 and XJ34. Automatic and manual gearboxes were also tried using both engines. The first prototype was supposed to be scrapped but somehow it escaped the crushers; after spending a few years in England it now resides in Queensland, Australia.However, the Jaguar-buying public would have to wait until the introduction of the Series II XJ6, and well into this series, before production XJCs could be seen. They were first shown in September and October of 1973 at the London, Paris and Frankfurt Motor Shows. It was announced that both 4.2 litre (six cylinder) and 5.3 litre (12 cylinder) versions would be available for the 1974 model year. Nevertheless, the result is a car that although not as quiet as a regular saloon it is still reasonably so. On the British market, air conditioning and manual transmission were optional, as was the choice of leather or cloth seats. All coupes were equipped with a black vinyl roof as standard equipment, except for the one which was specially produced for Jaguar's Andrew Whyte. The reason for the standard vinyl roof was not clear, but contrary to urban legend it was not because there was a welded seam in the roof! Most likely it was because the marketing department insisted on it; a vinyl roof was the flavour of the month in the automotive industry at that time. Sadly, production of the XJC was all too short. After commencement in 1975 the last of these great vehicles rolled off the line in November 1977, although the final 96 coupes were badged as 1978 cars.Originally bought by the vendor at 19,000 miles, so enraptured was he that he drove it right up until the 51,000 mile mark that it shows today. During that time, significant works have been undertaken including a full Waxoil body treatment, the installation of Lumination electronic ignition, new brake discs, wheel bearings, shock absorbers, springs and bushes. On the body, improvements have also been made; a replacement as well as the front and rear window rubbers, always a problem given the air pressure acting on this particular area. It was repainted in 2002 and is described as good to excellent in every respect by the vendor. The car, presented with a full one year's MoT test certificate and six months road tax, represents a most elegant and unusual long distance tourer.

Lot Details
Auction Fine Motor Cars and the Jaguar Legend
Coys, Blenheim Palace, UK
TypeCar
Lot Number436
Estimate£4000-£7000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£7175
Hammer Price (inc premium)-
Year1978
Condition rating
Registration numberXJC 66S
Mileage-
Chassis number2G-1575BW
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors