XJ6 versus E Type

Talk about E-Types here

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Gfhug
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#1 XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Gfhug » Fri Dec 21, 2018 12:53 pm

I have recently read reports of how comfortable the early XJ6 was/is. Some motoring reporters comparing it very highly against the Rolls Royce of the day but with the advantage of sportier performance.

Are there any owners who have/had both an early XJ6 4.2 and an E Type (six cylinder) who would like to express their opinions about their comparable road holding, handling, performance etc.?

Any thoughts as to why the XJ6 could absorb the lumps and potholes so smoothly as the rear suspension is the same as an E Type but the front suspension has a cross member? Would that have made a significant difference?

I'd be interested to hear the thoughts of those who have driven both. Maybe something for you to think back on instead of falling asleep in front of the TV over the Christmas period? :wink:

Thanks to anyone who wishes to contribute

Geoff
S2 FHC Light Blue

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Durango2k
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#2 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Durango2k » Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:18 pm

I guess the limou is far heavier....

Carsten
Jag E '66 S1 2+2, Citroen DS 23 Pallas iE, Citroen SM 3.0, Concept Centaur MK1, Citroen 11 BL '54, Sinclair C5, Velosolex

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JJC
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#3 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by JJC » Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:56 pm

Geoff: You are comparing apples to oranges, for obvious reasons. Weight being a big part of it. I have owned and driven both. One a family sedan, one a sports car. They both have their virtues, but nothing similar, except same manufacturer.

JJ

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JPW
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#4 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by JPW » Mon Dec 24, 2018 1:39 pm

Hi Geoff,

I know this is not exactly what you asked for, but I own both a V12 E Roadster, and a 1979 Series 2 Daimler Vanden Plas 4.2. As has been said before, they are surprisingly chalk and cheese.

Both cars are on standard suspension and steering, with the exception that they are both polybushed. Both are on newish Michelin XWX's. Neither have been damaged and tracking etc is something I'm careful about (no driving up pavement curbs...)

While the E steers well, the Daimler can be steered with 1 finger on the steering wheel with far more confidence - even over depressions in the road caused by sunken man holes etc. The Daimler is therefore far more restful to steer accurately. The difference in the 2 cars could be explained by the sports vs limo argument, or possibly the fact the XJ is a younger design.

Either way, it is hard to believe they both come from the same factory... :swerve:

James
Series 3 OTS, manual, UK supplied, 1S2400

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Gfhug
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#5 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Gfhug » Wed Dec 26, 2018 9:59 am

Thanks for your responses. The XJ6/12 seemed to do quite well in saloon car racing and is still good on the track in the vintage classes, which is what inspired my question. Without major changes it must have had good sporty suspension to begin with, yet still glide over potholes. A nice compromise.

Geoff
S2 FHC Light Blue

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christopher storey
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#6 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by christopher storey » Wed Dec 26, 2018 4:26 pm

JPW wrote:
Mon Dec 24, 2018 1:39 pm

While the E steers well, the Daimler can be steered with 1 finger on the steering wheel with far more confidence
James
I cannot reconcile this with either of my 6 cylinder Es, both of which steer with pinpoint precision with one finger . There can be many reasons for this : wider than standard tyres , particularly 205/70 on 6 cylinder cars , are a particular cause of lumpen steering, and wheels wider than 6 inch and/or with the wrong offset will alsodestroy the feel.


Edit : now I re-read your post, I see you have a V12 . A completely different beast from the 6 cylinder cars . Going back to Geoff's original point about ride , I have found standard suspension Es to have outstanding ride - perhaps not quite as unruffled as an XJ6, but not far off it. I do think polybushes have a lot to answer for :bigrin: :bigrin:

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johnetype
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#7 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by johnetype » Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:57 am

Gfhug wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 12:53 pm
I have recently read reports of how comfortable the early XJ6 was/is. Some motoring reporters comparing it very highly against the Rolls Royce of the day but with the advantage of sportier performance.
They certainly did, I remember my father quoting those reviews and it was true. My father had a Series 1 2.8 XJ6 and then one of the very first Series 2 4.2s. I learnt to drive in the Series 2 and subsequently drove it for many miles. ODH612M although I don't think it survives now.

I would suggest the following - roughly in priority order - were the contributors as to why the XJ6 has such an excellent ride/handling balance over the E type:

Stiffness of body shell
Front subframe with coil springs
Greater mass
Wider track
Longer wheelbase

Of course the out and out performance wasn't as good as an E type given the heavier car and automatic transmission.

And there were limits to the handling. The back end of the XJ6 let go on me on the highest part of Spaghetti Junction and I spun 540 degrees, coming to a halt, stalled and facing the wrong way! Subsequently the 4 rear shock absorbers were replaced on an 18 month old car - indicative of the poor quality control of British car manufacturing in the day.

With power steering the steering was very light but there was still good feedback through to the wheels.

And finally on its Dunlop aqua jet tyres, double bulkhead and excellent door seals it was a very quiet car for its day. That relative quietness added an extra layer of illusion to the whole performance as the car just wafted along.
John

1969 Series 2 FHC

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Tom W
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#8 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Tom W » Thu Dec 27, 2018 11:13 am

The front subframe on an XJ6 is isolated from the body of the car. The engine is mounts to the subframe, rather than directly to the body. This must make a big difference to NVH. Weight distribution is quite different too, and particularly polar moment of inertia, which will effect turn in. The engine is over the front axle on an XJ6, it’s behind the front axle on an E-type. I also find that sitting so close to the rear axle in the E-type makes it easier to feel what the back end of the car is doing.
Tom
1970 S2 FHC

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PeterCrespin
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#9 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by PeterCrespin » Fri Dec 28, 2018 12:00 am

Tom W wrote:
Thu Dec 27, 2018 11:13 am
Weight distribution is quite different too, and particularly polar moment of inertia
So you're saying we should take our suitcases out of the boot if we go ice racing in Nordkapp? :swerve:


Pete
(who has a serious moment of inertia getting out of bed on cold, wet, mornings.)
1E75339 UberLynx D-Type; 1R27190 70 FHC; 1E78478; 79 S2 XJ12L; 97 XJ6L

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Tom W
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#10 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Tom W » Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:59 am

That really depends how heavy your suitcase is
Tom
1970 S2 FHC

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Meonstoke
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#11 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Meonstoke » Tue Jan 15, 2019 12:19 pm

Hi Geoff,

I owned at the same time a Series 1 4.2 FHC Etype and an XJ6 4.2 series 1 manual with overdrive. As mentioned above they are quite different in character and purpose. However, let's not forget that the XJ6 was originally meant to be the sporting saloon version of the E-Type. Jaguar even played around with early prototypes that sported the front and back end of a S1 Etype. It's not for nothing that the XJ6 won Car of the Year award when it made its debut back in 1968. It was stunning and folks were clambering over themselves to get hold of one. Unfortunately the woes and poor direction of British Leyland ultimately led to the XJ6 becoming a softer, more gentlemanly carriage; and over the passage of time it inherited the Arthur Daley image. But that's not how it started out... Sir William Lyons felt it was his best car and design, and Ian Callum refers to the early XJ as a masterpiece. These cars are soooooo under-rated it is almost criminal.

I hankered after a S1 FHC Etype since I was a boy and we all know how it looks. But in terms of driving pleasure, stability, and ease of use the 4.2 MOD version of the series 1 was far superior to my stock Etype. The early XJs have real presence and simply ooze class. When I'm on the road with the XJ there is a permanent grin on my face knowing that (relatively speaking) no one else knows! Furthermore, I don't need to worry about the car capturing the wrong type of attention and being stolen. I found my XJ6 a much nicer drive than my Etype - which was a very good one - and less stressful too.

Find an early 4.2 MOD (not the BW auto) with the chrome dials and which has been well looked after (that is the biggest challenge), get it sorted out by XJ Engineering in the UK (or the equivalent elsewhere), put Kent wheels on it - and you'll be laughing. And if you want more power and performance then there are plenty of relatively simple upgrades possible that won't break the bank.

Lastly, from a rarity perspective there were very few S1 4.2 MODs made; especially LHD versions as 90% of the cars were automatics. In fact, it's quite likely that a S1 4.2 MOD is a rarer sight than most of the S1 Etype variants. Check the production numbers. There are plenty of recent magazine articles out there on the XJ6 but see if you can get hold of an older Practical Classics edition called " Snow Cats" that featured an early XJ6 MOD vs V12 OTS Etype. Makes for interesting reading....

Good luck!

M.

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Gfhug
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#12 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Gfhug » Tue Jan 15, 2019 12:55 pm

Meonstoke, thanks for those comments. They are pretty much what I had come across recently that made me ask the question. Your observation of how the XJ6 was originally conceived to be is very interesting: a saloon with genuine sporting credentials, the M5 of the day and could have continued to be if BL hadn't messed around with it. :banghead:

Have fun driving yours :swerve:

Geoff
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johnetype
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#13 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by johnetype » Wed Jan 16, 2019 11:56 pm

Where or what is the evidence that BL "messed around with" either the Series 1 or Series 2 XJ6?
John

1969 Series 2 FHC

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Doug Buchan
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#14 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Doug Buchan » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:53 am

I prefer the original SWB series1
Doug
'67 ots

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#15 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by christopher storey » Thu Jan 17, 2019 10:10 am

The styling originally tried by Lyons was indeed redolent of the E, but the intention always was to create a luxury saloon of extreme refinement. As others have noted, there was nothing altered by BL, which in fact had virtually no input into Jaguar because Lyons took great pains to see that no one interfered with his fiefdom!

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#16 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Meonstoke » Thu Jan 17, 2019 11:57 am

An early Series 1 4.2 SWB XJ model with MOD and 3.31 diff ratio is a whole different proposition and driving experience than a later Series 3 XJ LWB with the BW 3 speed slushbox and 2.88 diff; for both 4.2 and 5.3 litres. No doubt the Series 3 cars were better all round cars than the very early Series 1. Pretty much in the same way as a S3 Etype is to a S1 Etype. But no one will ever question that the S1 Etype was the more sporting drive with the purity of line intact, and hence more desirable overall. Basically, the same applies to the XJ S1. And anything that caught the imagination of Ian Callum as a youth so much that it encouraged him to become a car designer can't be all bad I would say!

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Meonstoke
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#17 Re: XJ6 versus E Type

Post by Meonstoke » Thu Jan 17, 2019 11:59 am

p.s. Or even with the GM400 3 speed box; before someone pick up on that ....

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