Ever wondered why so few XJ40s remain on the roads? One word: scrappage.
I stumbled across this place on the outskirts of Romney Marsh in 2014 – the largest and most depressing collection of Jaguars I’ve ever witnessed. And while hundreds of decrepit Jags of every stripe were littered about the place, there were entire compounds full of condemned XJ40’s – part (it would appear) of the 2009 government stimulus package aimed at propping up the motor trade in the wake of the financial crash.
It had been something of a mystery to me how this, the most fecund of the XJ series had become such a rare sight on our roads. Of course, it’s well known the early cars were not as well protected against rust and the ravages of time as they later became and it need not be stated that XJ40 remains amongst the most unloved of the series, but even allowing for expected levels of entropy, their sudden mass extinction was disconcerting.
However, a visit to this dolorous place (a sort of reverse-polarity Browns Lane) removed all doubt. Most of those in the compound appeared in reasonable nick – (as did many stored inside the building), but most appeared destined to meet the same grim fate. The next time I passed the site, some months later, every single car had vanished.