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S-Type R purchase advice required

3426 Views 26 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  zanderman
Hello All,

I'm really want to get an S-Type R and have been having a little look round the net and they come across as really reliable.
So I thought I'd come straight to the horses mouth, the front line of ownership to find out what I really should be checking for
when looking at these cars to with a mind to buy.
Any advice on what to look for much appreciated.
Also wondering ball park insurance costs for a 35 yo would be on one of these and has anyone gone classic car insurance route, limited miles etc..

Sorry if this is one of 1000's of similar posts on the same subject, I did a quick search (really quick).

Thanks in advance

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Make sure all the gadgets work, make sure no weird noises when on the test drive (supercharger whine is ok), full Jaguar Service History is a must. Finally if the Jag doesn't look right or feel right during the test drive walk away. Check the spare wheel well to ensure it isn't full of water (water can come in through the light cluster seals)
First item would be service history, even if this an older car, it will furnish you with a fair idea of how this car has performed over the miles. There are common faults with the S Type, lower front suspension, door solenoids, coils on plugs, all fairly mundane though! As regards to classic insurance, this can be obtained for vehicles over ten years old (Different companies may vary) but one thing to remember when taking out classic insurance, there is, as far as I know, no `No claims` discount, Best of luck with your search, a great motor car!
Blimey wasn't expecting replies this quickly, thanks chaps.
So just the usual stuff to look out for, not a great deal that is STR specific then, which is a relief.
Agree with all the above, plus...make sure there are no warning lights up, remove keys, start and stop a few times just in case. Tyres are expensive, so try and find a Car that's well shod. Alloy Wheels can be quite bad, I rejected one car because the Alloys were so bad, I'm talking thick strips of alloy peeling off the inside rim, as if someone had been shaving them, it would have needed new Wheels without doubt, however most can be dealt with by Powdercoating. Just make up your mind what year you want and do the leg work, drive as many as you can and take your time.
Stick your location on your profile, it might help if someone knows of a Car for sale.

Col, Welcome to the best Jaguar forum on the 'net. As Rondu says "do the leg work" I looked and drove 6 before I found the one that ticked all the boxes. A full Service History is a must, also check that all the updates have been done. Check the aircon is working ok, and when on a test drive make sure you get a decent drive not just around the block, try to get in as many types of roads as possible, bumpy back roads, town roads and a bit of motorway, if the guy has nothing to hide he'll be happy to let you drive it for a good 1/2hr. As for insurance do the meerkat thing as that will give you a ball park figure. Also be aware of the cost of parts hopefully you'll get a good one but you never know what'll go bang first! Do not get blinkered by the power, these things are off the scale if you're not used to them but it's more important to make sure ownership of one doesn't turn into a nightmare, so DO YOUR HOMEWORK, AND MAKE A CHECKLIST! and make sure the one you buy ticks EVERY box!
Not wishing to state the obvious,but are you aware there are 2 versions,I wasnt when I started looking
Thanks chaps, I'm just starting to take a look through the classifieds autotrader, PH etc, I really don't want to make a mistake, other wise 'her indoors' will have my nuts.
Its all OK until something goes wrong and I got to tell her how much. :-(

Busterbulldog - Am I wright in thinking some early ones were 4.0l v8. Otherwise I'm not aware of 2 versions. Really after 4.2l ideally in Black unmolested with full jag service history. Not concerned with satnav's but if its has then its a bonus.
Make sure that you get both sets of keys and fobs, replacements are expensive.
The R only came after the 2002.5 facelift with another slight update in 2005.
Welcome and a couple more things to check. Make sure the gears all change smoothly, no jerks or lurches, if there are, walk away. Finally, check the headlights point where they are supposed to, if they are pointing at the floor get the owner/dealer to fix them first (new lights cost £750+ each).

I have had a 2003 STR for 6 months and still can't get the grin off my face, any excuse to take it for a drive...
Hi Col - do you have a budget in mind? Any idea what year you may be able to afford?
I've had mine for two years now having had a diesel version for 4 years. Planning to hold
on to it for a bit yet so let me know if you would like to meet up for a chat. I still get
a buzz every time I drive it but such motoring pleasure does come at a price. Good luck
with the search!
Thanks a lot my list is getting longer for things to check but this is all good, and there don't seem to be anything standout major yet, to look out for.

Hey Aeroman, I'll take my time for the right one to come along. My budget at the moment its £6K this is likely to be a little lean to get STR but I'm going to try, and will probably rise with every month it takes me to find the right one. You don't see many STR's about so would be good to meet up and actually see another one.
Hi Col,

Interesting thread, I'm also after a str after test driving a 3.0 the other day and loved it but wanted more power, so str it is...
I have no experience as yet to offer, i'm learning too, but i will say i had some insurance quotes on and they were early £400's which i thought was really good....
My budget is under yours so finding the right one may take me even longer, but it seems most large engine cars these days are taking a while to shift so you never know we may both end up with a bargain...
hey col, you say "You don't see many STR's about so would be good to meet up and actually see another one."
Have you seen the thread below?

depending on where you are, come along...It's as good a chance you'll get to see about 15 STR's together as well as 15 owners who would be more than happy to chat!
That weekend would have been perfect to see a few decent example, but unfortunately I'm working. Its always the same with the way my shift works just can't odds it.

Jq_quint - Good luck with your search, I think we both may have a little leg work to do.
I think that if it were me I would save for a bit and buy a later model. I owned a 2007 STR in Midnight for about a year and it was a lovely car. The later model had larger wheels and slightly different front and rear ends. It came with sat nav as standard but not sure about the earlier models. Supercharger whine is normal and can be quite loud especially when you boot it. They can suffer from rear wishbone problems which will be expensive to replace at a dealer. Mine had cat problems and both were replaced in the year that I had it. Thankfully these were covered under warranty but out of warranty will cost about £650 each. My next car,an XFSV8 with the same 4.2, also had both cats fail. The STR is a lovely car that will give you lots of smiles per mile but do take your time in finding the right one, do your homework and it will save you money and grief. Good luck and let us know how you get on.
Col - for future reference, check out "Essex meetings?" in the England events section.
Perhaps you might be able to join us?
Welcome to the forum Col!
Its a great car! I bought the first one I saw...not recommended I know, but it was from a Jaguar dealer and the car felt right.
I'd agree with Cod and try and get a later model..IMO opinion the facelift version are better looking aswell.
Hey Col,

Just wondered if you have had any luck yet with your search...

I had second thoughts on an str (due to budget) and went to see a 4.2 yesterday...It stank of cigarette smoke and virtually every interior panel had some sort of *** burn...Engine was ok and gearbox, but must admit wasn't as fast as i hoped. Also boot was really rusty and after a run in the rain I realised why...I passed and due to its performance (good but not great), i'm back to lookin at an str....

Hey what colour you lookin at?
I was after silver but after seeing a black diesel s at the garage I may opt for black now, looked really meanacing in sport guise...
Not quite got the finances yet so the research continues...

Also can anyone confirm if all str's have red callipers? Are these all Brembo?

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jq, my calipers are silver with red stickers (not sure if Brembo's....anybody know how to tell??), and I'd think carefully about Black....great colour, but a b*g**r to keep clean. Wash it,polish it....stunning!... drive it to work (9 miles) dirty again! :(
Also just on the year of production....a 05 plate (and older) car tax is £280 a year, a 55+ plate £480 a year! may not seem a lot but its 3 tanks of go-go juice!
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