Back to listings


View vehicle description



The third-generation Jaguar XJ, or X350 as it is known internally, was launched in 2003. Fitted with a range of V6 and naturally aspirated and supercharged V8 engines, both short-wheelbase and long-wheelbase versions were available.

Featuring a bonded and rivetted aluminium monocoque chassis that was both 40% lighter and 50% stiffer than that of the outgoing model, the styling of its aluminium body panels were a gentle development of the rounded, hooded-headlight style that had become the XJ-range’s signature look.

Fitted with a multi-link, four-wheel computer-controlled adaptive air suspension, the X350 handled as well as it rode and was the epitome of the Grace, Space, and Pace that had been embedded within the Coventry firm’s DNA for half-a-century.

The XJ8 you are looking at here is fitted with the 4.2-litre naturally aspirated V8 engine and ZF six-speed automatic gearbox. Developing 296bhp and 312lb/ft of torque, the XJ8 can waft its way to a limited top speed of 155mph after passing 62mph in 6.6 seconds. So, more of an ultra-quick waft really…

The Vehicle

First registered on the 1st of October 2004, as you’ve probably gathered from the number plates, this is an ex-Japan car that was repatriated in September 2019.

Believed to have been a chauffeur-driven diplomat’s car while it was over there (the vendor removed a flagpole from the nearside front wing when it arrived, which helps confirm the provenance…) he’s enjoyed using it for the past year.

Being offered with no reserve as part of our famous Free-Bid Friday, it’s going to find a new home with a new owner from the very first bid – so why not try to make it yours, eh?

On the Outside

The metallic black paintwork is in fine fettle with decent shutlines, dent and ripple-free panels, and a good overall fit ‘n’ finish. Cars from Japan tend to benefit from salt-free roads and unusually conscientious owners – and this one shows the benefits of both.

The 18-inch, eight-spoke alloy wheels are in great shape, being free of dinks and scrapes. They’re shod with matching Continental ContiSportContact tyres too, which says only good things.

Because our experience is that matching high-quality tyres are an infallible sign of a caring and mechanically sympathetic owner who is prepared to spend the appropriate amount in maintaining their car properly. Their presence does not, of course, preclude the need for a thorough inspection - something the vendor would welcome, by the way – but it does perhaps give you an insight into their attitude towards maintenance.

Of course, there are some stonechips plus quite a few swirl marks. However, we think a good machine polish by someone who knows what they’re doing would transform it, lifting it from good to very good.

Some of the chrome trim is a bit scabby in places too, but we think this is plastic masquerading as metal, so replacing it should be cheap and easy.

On the Inside

The cream leather interior is fabulous; few people do the whole wood ‘n’ leather thing better than Jaguar and this one is as good as any we’ve seen.

The heated leather front seats are almost unmarked; with virtually no creasing at all to the driver’s seat, the passenger’s is even better.

The rear seats are just as good - and they are heated and electrically adjustable to boot. Cleverly, the controls for the factory fitted entertainment are neatly integrated in the rear armrest and there is privacy glass back there as well as rear sunblinds. Chauffeur-driven remember.

The headlining is clean and taut, the chrome controls sparkle, and the carpets are excellent. The door cards are good too, and home to high-end Alpine speakers – and the wooden veneer, often the first indicator of an indifferent owner, is very good indeed. The owner assures us that everything in there works as it should; it really is a lovely place to be.

As is the boot, which will come as a relief to any kidnap victims unfortunate enough to be bundled in there. Very clean and neatly organised, it is home to the sat-nav DVD player, CD multi-changer, space-saver spare wheel, toolkit, warning triangle, and battery. Lifting the very clean carpet shows that the underlying floor is still utterly solid.

Problems? Well, some of the headlining trim around the sunglass holder and control panel is a little grubby and the radio will need a gizmo connected to it to enable it to receive the higher FM frequencies we use here.


The dates and mileages recorded in the car’s paperwork from Japan seem to support the recorded mileage. Of course, nothing in life is certain bar death, taxes, and the fact that your Man Maths isn’t fooling your better half not matter what they tell you, but if we were gamblers we’d wager that it’s correct.

The underside is spectacular and shows in the clearest possible way the benefits of buying a car from a country that doesn’t use salt on its roads. Very clean, it lacks the widespread rust and surface corrosion that usually affects the steel underpinnings of cars that have lived their life over here.

The vendor says that there is “nothing to do to it mechanically” and describes it as being “faultless to drive”. We’ve taken it for a quick test-drive and can confirm that we didn’t find anything to concern us at all – and as you can hear on the video, it sounds epic.

History Highlights

While the online MOT history check shows that the XJ8’s MOT certificate expires in August 2020, the vendor is intending to pop a new one on before the end of the auction.

It also still has its original owner’s handbook, book pack and wallet plus the export certificate, some paperwork from Japan, and three keys.

Please visit the documents section of the gallery of this listing where you will find photos of this paperwork.

If you’d like to inspect the car prior to placing a bid – something we would encourage – then please use the Contact Seller button to arrange an appointment.

And please be reassured, we’ve undertaken a full COVID-assessment and put into place strict control measure to enable us to safely facilitate a no-contact, socially distanced viewing that includes disinfection of the vehicle before and after your viewing.

What We Think

The benefits are buying a car from Japan are clear; alongside the absence of any serious rust whatsoever comes the fact that they tend to maintain their cars with an unusual degree of diligence.

And, because this has probably been chauffeur-drive, it’s likely to have been driven with an unusual degree of skill and care, too. Add in a massive specification and regular servicing and you have an XJ8 you can buy with your head and your heart.

You can probably also buy it with Mission Control’s permission because it’s being offered for sale with a guide price of just £4,000 to £8,000 – and no reserve, so it might go for even less.

Still criminally undervalued, only the best examples are likely to do well in the future and this is one of the very best we’ve ever seen.

So, why not pop in a bid and see what happens? After all, the very worst outcome is that you’ll find yourself the lucky new owner of one of the finest surviving Jaguar XJ8s on the planet.

Viewing is always encouraged, and this particular car is located with us at The Market HQ near Abingdon; to arrange an appointment please use the Contact Seller button at the top of the listing. Feel free to ask any questions or make observations in the comments section below, or try our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

If needed, please remember we have a network of trusted suppliers we work with regularly and can recommend: Classic & Sportscar Finance for purchase-financing, Footman James for classic car insurance, Classic Concierge for storing your car plus we have a list of contacts who can help with transport and shipping.  

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we never stop encouraging bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at the vehicles delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using simple cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, return policy does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

Video Review

Want to know how The Market auctions work? Take a look at our FAQ's

View FAQ's

neil stewart

  • Location: Abingdon
  • Odometer Reading: 32000
  • Engine: 4200
  • Gearbox: Auto
  • Colour: Metallic Black
  • Interior: Cream Leather

Live auctions View more