Cheap Cat: 1965 Jaguar S-Type


The Jaguar S-Type is an updated version of the Mark 2. There were styling and interior changes, but the biggest improvement was the independent rear suspension. This old cat is listed on eBay in Lebanon, Tennessee and has been stored since 1983. It was repainted in 1979 and the engine was rebuilt shortly before it was put away. It’s had lots of mechanical work done to revive it including tune-up, transmission serviced, carbs overhauled, brakes redone, new tires, battery and hoses and clean and restore one gas tank. It runs and drives beautifully except for the brakes which still have issues after being rebuilt. The dealer has provided many pictures, even several of the underside. It appears to be a rust free car. The interior needs lots of work. The BIN of $9,800 seems reasonable for this Jag, even with it’s shortcomings. .


The interior is not at all pristine, but if the seats were reupholstered and the headliner redone it would be nice enough. New carpet would make it really nice.


The back seat is in even worse condition than the front.


Things look tidy under the hood. The factory AC is still in place, but there’s no word on if it’s working.


The underside looks really clean and rust free.It will still take a close inspection as these S-Types are known to have hidden corrosion, especially in places like the A Posts. A good clue is to see how well the doors close. This is a unibody car and Jaguar didn’t use much corrosion protection.


A little water makes this old cat look more shiny that it is, but the body does look pretty solid. One might be upside down if they restored it to perfect, but as it is, with upholstery and brake work it would be a nice driver. The brakes have been redone so perhaps the difficulty is with the brake lines. Is there some special, expensive misery known to lurk in the “please stop now” system? No mention was made of the state of the electrical system. Given the reputation of the Dark Lord Lucas, one should always be cautious. What do you think it would take to bring this pretty cat up to driver status? Does $9,800 seem like a reasonable price for this S-Type?


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  1. Howard A Member

    Nice car. Going to make one heck of a racket with those dual cherry bombs. Love the dash.

  2. Francisco

    Toggles and wires. What a beautiful combination.

  3. Jeffro

    Oh….I see the car is in Tennessee. That explains the cherry bomb mufflers.

  4. Retgman

    Nice car and worth the price. A complete original interior will cost $6,000 not including labor but maybe it only needs seats and carpets which will still be a substantial amount. These cars are slowly going up in value as E types are getting in the ozone withe the same engine.

    • RT

      Assuming one acquires it for function, an interior (& even a comparable electrical) overhaul would be easy enough to do oneself, as long as one went with non-Jag-$$ pieces & generic wiring. Also nice if the car still has a wire-wheel spare or two.

      Like 1
  5. charlie Member

    A wonderful car to drive when it runs. And handsome, as well. Just be sure you have AAA or towing on your insurance policy, and, something reliable to drive when the Jag is in the shop. But when it runs, it is almost erotic, they smell good, leather, wood, and gasoline, they go where you point them. they go fast. I had a l960 Jag and I still miss it, but I had a ’56 Chevy if I had to be somewhere on time.

  6. hhaleblian

    Cherry Bombs on a Limey feline. Only south of the Mason Dixon. Gotta love it. Or, scratch your head.

  7. Ross W. Lovell

    Greetings All,

    The big concern after corrosion, and the underside looks pretty good is the rear end.

    The S-Type runs a similar rear end to the E-Type, with inboard brakes and the associated problems with the brake cylinders getting far more water via the transmission tunnel. Not uncommon for the brakes to be frozen on the IRS system than the normal diff. If the master has been rebuilt, so much the better.

    Love the frenched headlights but prefer the MKII rear wheel arches as the Spaatz, being removable allow the ease of removing the rear wheel and tire if you get a flat. It’s a lot more trickier on the S, but you get 4 inches more room for the rear passenger.

    Doubtful on that AC being factory offered, more likely dealer installed. Jaguar’s Hester/defroster system wasn’t adequate for the States and AC wasn’t that prevalent in the UK. William Lyons would not have paid for the bracket to be chromed either he would have thought that added nothing to the aesthetics of the engine bay.

    The interior….$6K puts you in full interior, and carpets for a MKIX, MKII’s are cheaper, seats can be done more reasonably and if leather and foam isn’t too far gone they can be repaired, have seen worse brought back.

    This model is just before the 420 sedan, the predecessor to the XJ6. The 420 not to be confused with the 420G, a totally different model. The 420 was a two year model for some real interesting reasons.

  8. John H. in CT

    Well worth it. WRT brskes, the old Jags tend to have coagulation in the brake fluid after sitting for many years without driving. Flushing won’t get it out. You have to dissasemble at the wheels. That said, ’65 very much before the dreaded British Leyland years, so mechanicals are fine when restored.

  9. Joss

    The brake booster is a very hard to find part, my car sat around for a year while I was looking for one. Ended up having it rebuilt by Classic Showcase in CA, very reasonable. They restored the whole car a decade ago, and it still looks great. These are way underpriced in my opinion, they drive super smooth, lots of power, great in the curves.
    This car looks well worth the ask.

  10. PatrickM

    Uh-oh!! Sold. Someone got themselves a great deal.

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