Jaguar X-Type

How close is the X-Type to the Ford? Is it true that despite its unification, it breaks down a lot?

Despite a very successful design and luxurious interior trimming with natural veneer and leather, X-Type consistently lagged behind German competitors in the D-class - BMW 3 series, Mercedes C-Klasse and Audi A4. The sales plan was thwarted: only 350,000 cars were sold in 8 years, while the plan was to sell 100,000 annually.

A dozen years after the end of production, it is not so difficult to find a car with quite decent external condition even in the lowest price category. The car long retained the status of elite, and therefore operated relatively carefully. They were not popular with "racers", rarely got into criminal reports. Does it make sense to buy such a car today?

The bulk of the cars on our market were surprisingly well preserved externally - the quality of paintwork was top-notch. However, numerous chrome parts suffer a lot from reagents in winter - in the provinces such problems are much less frequent.

Hood, windshield frame, doors and fender arches do not fade, do not grow chips, and even the shine lasts till the last. If mechanical damage still occurred, galvanic galvanizing saves. The trunk lid on sedans behaves a little worse: the paint next to decorative elements frizzes on it. It is pleasant that the layer of paintwork is not only thick, but also elastic, which simplifies repair of dents without painting.

But, unfortunately, cars have a weak spot, and what a weak spot. Open the doors and look closely at the sills. From the outside you see only a plastic lining, and if at the junction of plastic and metal you can see traces of bloating and rust, then inside everything is probably quite sad. If there are no traces at first glance, then do not hurry to rejoice and be sure to remove the lining.

Why do sills corrode? Dirt gets into large enough ventilation holes and stays inside - in such cases no galvanizing can save. The small gap between the plastic cover and the metal makes things worse: even the best examples have pieces of paintwork peeling off under the plastic, massive surface corrosion and a corroding sill reinforcement inside. In neglected cases, there is simply... nothing under the plastic - the sill crumbles into dust, and the reinforcement also loses most of its mass.

Strange as it may seem, it is possible to drive for some time without sills: doors close and open easily, engine shield does not shake in vibrations, windows do not crack. It is not in vain that the designers tried to make the car torsionally stiffer than the icon of controllability of those times, the "three-car" BMW in the E46 body....

But sooner or later you still need to weld, and you can be glad that despite the rarity of the model, there are no problems with spare parts. The sill and its booster are mastered by specialized services, you can order "reinforced" parts made of high-strength steel with thickness up to 3 mm, with or without galvanizing. Even stainless steel parts are offered - however, the question of welding in this case remains open.

If the rear arch rotted along the chain, which happens on previously beaten cars, then you will have to order a second-hand fender - non-original parts are not found, and new ones are obscenely expensive. In theory, there are repair components of the wing and arch, but they will have to search for them on English online resources and order with delivery. In practice, it is more common to pick up something similar or "sculpted" on the spot.             

Inside the body is very well preserved - thanks to quality wiring glands, good seals and well-designed drains of the overmotor niche, hatch and climate system. Crumbling floors on the inside and moisture in the trunk suggest some serious trouble, shoddy repairs and the like.

Body equipment does not pose any problems, everything is made qualitatively with a few exceptions. Radiator grille looks good, but in fact it is flimsy, easy to break or bend, and the chrome is peeling off.  Headlights by design are complicated, they rub very easily and stop shining at once, and there is almost no non-original, and the glass cannot be replaced. If you order from England, you will have to keep in mind that they are all for left-hand traffic, and you will have to remake them.

Doors on Jaguar are reinforced, and therefore heavy, but hinges here are from Mondeo, so the sagging driver's door, and in case of service cars and rear right door is a common thing. Door stoppers are also weak, but they are rebuilt, and components are again suitable from Mondeo.

Interior

As it was already mentioned, the interior will not disappoint: natural veneer under varnish, excellent leather, many cars with cozy velour interior. The cars are also well equipped, though "paddles" at the back and simple multimedia system are not so rare. As well as unpainted plastic.

The climate system is very reliable. The cabin filter has a small area, and you need to change it often, but it is very easy to do it from under the hood, and it costs a penny. The climatic fan runs quite reliably up to 150-200 thousand, vacuum actuators of dampers are relatively trouble-free - only pneumolines and valves can fail, which are inexpensive and easy to change. Electronics rarely fails - the block can "lose" firmware or connection with CAN-bus of the car.

The climate control screen has a limited service life and does not like overheating of the car in the sun and severe frosts. If it blinks or elements are missing, it helps to resolder the loop, if it "leaks" - only replacement.  

Wear resistance of all internal splendor is very good, with mileage over 300 often only steering wheel leather gives out the true age, yes the shine of seat leather can say something. Sometimes there are cracks on lacquered parts - it is treated by grinding.

Of course, the light-colored interior, popular with Jaguars, needs careful care, as it gets dirty easily. You should not make a pigsty on the floor carpet and get into the car with dirty feet, velour mats should be changed for something more moisture-resistant for winter. Pile covers can withstand one or two cleanings with a vacuum cleaner with an electric brush, but not more than that.

Breakdowns of microlifts, headrest actuators and electric seat actuators - by circumstances. There are cars on which these elements do not work, and the price of replacement is usually high enough: nothing fits from Ford, even window elevators are "own" here, except for the drive motor.

Electrics

Despite its relative simplicity, the electrics are capable of bothering with minor troubles - CAN-bus blocks are actively used here. All Ford connectors are inexpensive and not ideal, they leak and break often, especially if the service touches them.

Lambda probes are frankly weak, burning "check" because of their failures is a usual thing on X-Type. However, the second most popular reason of "check engine" is ignition failures, most often it is necessary to carry out coil prevention, replace the tip and spring, well and candles.

The alternator works as long as the plastic of the engine compartment from below is intact. If the plastic is broken, it will not work for long - the wear of brushes and bearings will not make you wait. It is also worth noting that its power is clearly insufficient, so even if the alternator is in good working order, the battery discharges.

In general, the resource of electrical components so far allows to do without serious repairs, but, unfortunately, the prices for the original are completely unreasonable. Almost everything that does not fit from Fords, you will have to look for used ones at junkyards or restore them. The same windshield washer motors have their own connector. You will have to sharpen the terminals or change the connector, not to buy an original one. Original are also control units of parking sensors and radiator ventilation, which lose tightness and corrode from inside. In general, even with the relative conservativeness of the electrical system, you will not be bored.

Brakes, suspension and steering

Braking system of the car does not stand out.  Simple and inexpensive components of mechanisms, even on 3-liter cars. Sufficient resource and abundance of non-original make maintenance almost unproblematic. From breakdowns it is possible to note only ABS blocks, where soldering is destroyed, and corrosion of tubes to brakes of a rear axle.

Ford influence is noticeable in suspension, but there is no full compatibility. So, in front - absolutely identical design, but with aluminum levers, which on Mondeo go exclusively on "sports" versions ST. The rear multilink rear suspension is similar to Mondeo station wagons structurally, but only longitudinal and small levers are identical.

The front subframe in all-wheel drive versions is weak, in small accidents with suspension damage it tends to lose its geometry and does not fit from Ford, although it is similar.

A lot of elements, such as shock absorbers and subframe bushings, can be safely put from Mondeo. But then do not be surprised that the character of the car will change. Differences of Jaguar suspension from Ford suspension are caused by fine-tuning of balance of smooth running and controllability. If you put everything in the mix "just to drive", the Jaguar will lose some of its charm. And yes, strong squeaks at the back part are usually caused by a cable of a handbrake: it has not very well located bushing, check them, before to reassemble a suspension.

In steering, the power steering supplies the most problems. The efficiency of the radiator is obviously insufficient in conditions of dense layout, and overheating of oil can lead to wear (and, as a consequence, howling) of the power steering pump. Therefore, it is desirable to clean the radiator regularly, and also to change the expansion tank and filter.

The rack is absolutely typical, with mileage well over 300 backlash is common, but it is not prone to leaks. Steering rods and lugs on cars with low-profile rubber better to check as often as possible, especially if you do not know what you put in the last repair. Even not bad components can have a resource of less than 40-50 thousand under high load.

Gearboxes

Five-speed automatic transmission is a variant of Ford's MTX75, a box simple and quite reliable. Moment up to 300 Nm it withstands without any labor, so that it is possible to "tear" it only with a motor 3,0, and that with difficulty.

Age problems are weakly expressed: synchronizers and leaks. It is worth to change oil at least occasionally, especially if you like to "pile on". From overload in combination with old oil may seize differential satellites - it happened on front-wheel drive versions. In all-wheel drive versions it has a different design, and the load on it is less.

The cable drive of ICP in all modifications is prone to souring, if the car is standing for a long time, and the backlashes accumulate little by little with mileage. After 250-300 thousand, it may be necessary to repair the rocker and replace the cables.

The six-speed manual is found only with the 2.2 diesel after restyling - it is Ford's MMT6, also quite a decent unit.

Automatic in the vast majority of cases - five-speed Jatco JF506E, the old four-speed was prudently abandoned. It was put on Nissan, Mazda and Ford, and also on Volkswagen and Audi. RE5F01A, JA5A-EL, 09A/09B - it is all of them.

With careful handling, the box is almost eternal, up to mileage of 350-400 thousand can pass without major repairs. Except that torque converter linings usually do not withstand so much, though they are not inclined to "burn" on it, because the settings of the control unit are rather "herbivorous", without aggressive wear.

With powerful motors on X-Type, repair of GDT is usually required after 200-250 thousand mileage, if not to overheat oil and change it at least once in 60 thousand mileage. The solenoids are usually cleaned during preventive maintenance - they can be cleaned here. If it does not help, they are replaced. The solenoid of pressure regulation try to change when removing the hydraulic block and increased oil contamination preventively. In gearboxes manufactured before 2004, when operating for a long time with dirty oil, the oil channel of the GDT locking solenoid is easily damaged: it is "chewed" through.

The gearbox is also quite sensitive to oil cleanliness and temperature. Overheating leads to pressure leaks through pistons and rings, damage to solenoids and, as a result, to overhaul.

The mechanical part is very reliable, even with a three-liter motor you can count on a resource of more than 250 thousand before the appearance of "trolleybus" sound, and usually more than 400. This is already beginning to make noise planetary gears, which usually means a very serious repair.  At higher mileages, there can be problems with wear on the Direct drum and hub of the second brake and reverse package.

There are a few "generic" problems that come out with hard use or bump shifts due to failures in the hydrolock. First of all, it is the failure of the drum-piston of 4-5 gears - a crack in the aluminum housing leads to the burning of the fifth and rear gear packages. In the second - it is the wear of the Low/Rev drum at high loads and insufficient oil pressure: its surface is ground by sealing rings, and the pressure in the Low package naturally disappears.

The Aisin TF80SC six-speed gearbox, well known from Citroen to Volvo, is rarely available with the 2.2 diesel after restyling. Due to its rarity we will not devote much time to it: read about it in the review of Volvo S60 II or Volvo XC60.

All-wheel drive system

All-wheel drive on Jaguars is permanent, with locking of the inter-axle differential with a viscous clutch. After restyling in 2007, the visco clutch was removed, and the task of blocking was assigned to the new ESP.

In rare cars with real mileage up to 200 thousand there are no special problems, if oil level was not missed, but further it is possible to increase vibrations. The root of evil is in a suspension clutch of a cardan shaft: it is located in a close tunnel and, apparently, is strongly heated by an exhaust. The vibrations of the cardan break the shank bearing. So if you ignore vibrations, you can get a front-wheel drive car.

Engines

There are no special complaints about the attachments, but the layout is disappointing. The gasoline V6 is placed in the engine compartment like a hand in a glove, without "extra" gaps, so it is hard to service it. There are gimbals and meter extensions, work by touch or simply removing the power unit.

There are traditionally a lot of vacuum lines - on the cars of the early 2000s vacuum was still used for the operation of actuators of the climate system, EGR valve, secondary air and others. Therefore, the risks of leaks through the vacuum system increase, and motors are very sensitive to it.

Gasoline pumps are not notable for their survivability, and at mileage of 150-200 thousand original ones have probably already failed, and it is not known what they have replaced. Maybe something Chinese. Since there is no hatch for pump service, for diagnostics and repair it is necessary to remove the gas tank. In case of front-wheel drive cars it is still reasonable, but on all-wheel drive cars the amount of work increases catastrophically - it is easier to cut a hatch from the top from the cabin.

Jaguar motors of AJ V6 series are one of the variants of Ford Duratec V6 engine. This motor was developed by Porsche engineers in the early 90s, and further refinement was under the control of Cosworth engineers, so it has very sporty roots. It was installed since 1993 on Ford and Mazda cars. For application on Jaguar the motor was significantly improved: it has the cylinder head of its own design with phase shifters and tappets in the valve train, in contrast to Mazda MZI and Ford Duratec motors of the same working volume, and especially for X-Type made a version with a volume of 2.1 liters. Economically it does not make sense, but the prestige of the brand did not allow to put an in-line "four" under the hood in the early two-thousandth.

X-Type engine lineup: two crankshafts with different stroke and two cylinder diameters give three variants of working volume and power range from 157 to 234 hp. The block of 2.1 and 2.5 does not differ in height, so a simple replacement of the crankshaft and piston can make 2.5 from 2.1. In maintenance the engines are absolutely identical, but the life of the short-stroke 2.1 is still a little higher than that of the larger variants.

In general, all variants are not bad: they are able to pass their 300-400 thousand with the replacement of timing every 200-250 thousand kilometers and regular worries about the tightness of the intake and attachments.

The main problem of the motors is suction and leaks. The intake manifold here is composite: the lower part, intermediate c ramp and "upper". The gaskets between them are not cheap, you need 6 of them. Surprisingly fit much cheaper analogs from Volkswagen (06E 198 717) and BMW (11 61 1 487 208).

If you are going to seal the intake, it is desirable to change the sealing rings of the injectors at once: in the block collapse high temperature and strong vibrations, and they also dry out and lose tightness. Complicating the problem are vacuum actuators and features of the intake manifolds. The 2.1 motors have their own intake manifold and are slightly more prone to sucking. The 2.5 and 3.0 have a slightly better design.

The second intake problem is very expensive and rather capricious geometry control valves: they are electrically actuated. They have no diagnostics (Check Engine will not light up, and scanning will not give errors), but they affect the working processes in the engine in the most unpleasant way. Air suction and the operation of valves "apart" lead to the fact that not bad in general the motor eats a lot of gasoline and does not give proper traction. This is a very common problem, most of X-type just because of these two reasons has an average consumption of more than 16-18 liters in the city even with 2.1 engines, and with 3.0 consumption can be more than 20 liters and do not fall on the highway below 10. In general, if the consumption is high, the first thing to do is not to wash the injectors, but to change all 12 intake gaskets and wash or replace both flaps. However, a smoke-machine test will not be superfluous.

The second serious problem of V6 motors is low pump life: complaints about leaks and impeller failure are frequent. The original Jaguar impeller is ceramic, on non-original components from Mondeo they are usually plastic or metal. It is because of the pump that the bulk of overheating in these motors occurs, so at the slightest deviation in temperature under load it is worth replacing the pump with a new one, if there is any doubt about it. Even slight overheating will cause cylinder-head gaskets to burst, and possibly lead to caked piston rings and leaking valve seals.

Oil leakage and loss is also a problem, especially with the tightness of the motor. The ventilation system is quite simple, gaskets are not reliable, and leaks are quite likely. Cleaning of the oil separator and tubes is a mandatory operation after 5-8 years of operation. At the same time it is worth replacing some of the tubes - they are softened by oil, and the valves fall out. These problems can be clearly seen when testing the intake with a smoke machine.

But there is good news. The piston group is afraid only of overheating and dust in case of suction - if the cooling and intake systems are in good working order, it lasts for hundreds of thousands. Catalysts are successful enough, they serve, again, for a long time. The oil pump and liners serve normally until the piston group is completely worn out, in 400 thousand of mileage.

Unfortunately, the service culture spoils everything. Instead of gaskets, joints are filled with sealant, and instead of solving well-known congenital ailments, masters can spend months divvying up customers for pointless replacement of plugs, ignition modules and everything else.

The image of the car implies increased operating costs, and services take advantage of this chance, not repenting about the fact that they kill the engine and plunge owners into even greater costs.

To buy or not to buy?

As you can see, there's nothing terrible about used Jaguars - but don't assume that because it's a relative of the Mondeo, the cost of ownership will be the same. The X-Type is no cheaper to maintain than its German class rivals. But it is not more expensive. Except that on some positions there will be difficulties with spare parts. If you are ready to put up with this imperfection, and English style makes your heart beat more often, take this car.