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The Jaguar at Jefferson

Would you rather have this green Jaguar at Jefferson. . . .

Would you rather have this green Jaguar at Jefferson. . . .

Or this XJ12 saloon that needs less attention?

Or this XJ12 saloon that needs less attention?

Last year a friend of ours who used to be in charge of Wisconsin’s Department of Transportation passed away suddenly leaving a collection of cars behind. He had a number of Jaguars, an Excalibur, an MG-TD replica, a DeLorean and a Rolls-Royce. We have never seen the Rolls, which he got right before he passed on, but all of the other cars are really decent rigs.

My friend kept the cars in an airplane hangar. He kept after them pretty well, although they did sit for a year after his demise. So a few of them may need tinkering or batteries — normal stuff.

One car that definitely needed tinkering was a 1994 Jaguar XJ12. In fact, this car recently came into Gunner’s Great Garage for said tinkering. Fuel delivery was the car’s only problem, and one we solved that it purred just like a cat. . . or a very content Jaguar.

We got a scare when the mechanics got the car going because were away from the shop for a few minutes. As we drove back we saw smoke billowing out of the bay door. Yikes! But it was only because they had put oil in the cylinders to protect the engine when it started. After a few minutes, the smoke went away and the car was running really good.

As far as we know, our friend’s wife wants to sell all or most of his cars. She hasn’t set any prices and we’ll probably be using the Old Cars Price Guide and other sources to come up with some fair market prices to suggest to her. We know she just wants to settle out the estate and feel comfortable with what she realizes for the cars. So, when we went to the Jefferson swap meet last weekend and saw a Jaguar for sale on a trailer we stopped to see the asking price.

The dark green Jag was not a bad car, but it did need work. It had been stored for a very long time and it had three or four flat tires. There was some rust showing and probably more that was hidden. It was a six-cylinder Jag. Some people prefer the sixes, although the V-12s have higher values.

Scrawled across the car’s windshield in yellow marker you could barely see was the $1,900 asking price. Well. We don’t know if that is good or bad, but we had the general impression that once the green car was fixed up to look like our friend’s XJ12, someone would have more in it than the XJ12 could be purchased for. And at least we have a real world “yardstick” to go by to judge what the XJ12 might be fairly sold for.

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