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Stray Cat: 1957 Jaguar MK VIII

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These are the stories that always get us down. This Jaguar was driven to this location where it has sat for roughly 25 years. It looks like it was nice car before its long term hiatus from road duty. The Jaguar MK VIII was a plush and deluxe automobile, and it looks as if there might be enough of this one left to do something with it. The seller is asking $6,500 for this sad cat. Find it here on craigslist out of Rochester, New York.

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The 3.4 litre inline-six is present and appears complete. Corrosion has taken over the engine bay, but with some patience and a bit of elbow grease you could cut through some of it to see what you have. Long term storage is something that can be done, as long as it is a planned storage. With unplanned long term storage we become concerned about many aspects of the vehicle including its heart. Gas becomes thick and varnish like, oil becomes greasy, internal bits gain surface rust, and moisture is your biggest enemy. We hope this engine isn’t frozen after its long hibernation.

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The exterior of this Jaguar is difficult to see and we often suffer from clouded vision when we look at something we like. The photos show some promise for the car, showing much of the paint remaining, and no apparent rust holes in the body work. But the underbody is what we fear. The rear window is missing, so the interior of the car has been exposed to the elements, and possibly some small furry animals.

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The interior is not particularly inspiring. It is difficult to tell the condition and what may be missing from it other than the door panels. It would also appear this interior shot was taken through the rear window opening. We wonder if the doors are seized, or if there just isn’t much else to see from the interior of this Jaguar. The steering wheel is present in this rare MK VIII, being one of roughly 1,600 left hand drive cars produced.

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Sadly it appears it hasn’t been to long since this Jaguar was a reasonable condition driver not that long ago. It is always disappointing to see the regression of an automobile. Sometimes emotions run high and the memories tied to a car are too valuable to let it go. We wonder if that’s the case with this Jaguar? Anything is possible with time and money though, and being that this Jaguar MK VIII is a left hand drive variant, it might be worthy of a restoration. Would you, our readers, give this sad cat a new home? What should be the fate of this Jaguar? We are thinking restoration, but how about you?


  1. Leo

    Parts car now

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  2. Alan Brase

    Seller is very optimistic about the value here. I say $1500-$2500. This is a wonderful example of what outside storage does. Inside, it could be a very easily restored vehicle. And small ANIMALS? What a disaster that is. Removing feces could kill you from reaction to some mold dust.

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  3. Carfan

    Not worth saving…picture this once nice car, which has sunk to it’s floorpan in the moist dirt, being buried in snow several months per year for 25 years. The interior and once nice dash are beyond hope, every mechanical bit needs replacing….rust…rust..rust….and the furry critters have raised genetations of babies in there…rare does not mean valuable here…sad parts car only

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  4. Puhnto

    The steering wheel is all that’s worth saving. Take it off and get scrap value for the rest.

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  5. Rob

    Btw Jamie..
    Have you seen this ’60 Mark IX? Auction ends: August 8, 2016 3:00pm EST.. auction estimate: Fourteen Hundred & seventy-one ($1471.). It’s in Seattle, WA

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    • Rob

      Drilling down into the AD, it shows a Buy it Now price of $17,800., if you call it in.. Run & Drive Verified.

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    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      Thanks for pointing that one out, Rob! I wish it weren’t on “minimum bid” i.e. reserve, but I’ll follow it :-) Honestly, that buy it now doesn’t look too bad, but it would be nice to know if it still has a Jag engine…

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  6. grant

    “Oil becomes greasy?”

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  7. Mark S

    Good news for the guys that have the other 1688 of these cars because I think a parts car just became available, and their cars just became even more rare. The owners could have put up a small wooden structure with a floor that is on skids for minimal cost to store it. But this sell leaves it outside to rot for 25 years and now he want money for it. I say part it down and crush the rest. This car is worth maybe $500.00 in its present condition.

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  8. Fred W.

    This car is painful to look at- especially when you see what it once was.

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  9. Eric Dashman

    Stray cat? This is a deceased cat. Nothing but a parts car for all but the most ambitious and optimistic. $500 is generous.

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  10. ClassicCarFan

    Yes, I don’t see anything other than a parts car here. It’s been sat outside on a damp forest floor, rear window letting the elements in, you can see from the under-hood shot, any exposed metal surfaces will be severely rusted – and it’s a pretty safe bet that the body work where you can’t see it is rotting from the inside-out.

    The cost of bringing this car back up to even driver condition will be totally prohibitive. These aren’t cheap cars to work on, the leather and wood interior for example would cost a fortune to re-do. As per the example Rob posted, these cars in good condition don’t sell for crazy high prices.

    Shame really….I do love these Mk VII – IX series of Jaguars. I generally prefer to have a convertible for a classic car, but these big Jaguar “saloons” are one of the closed cars I’d really like to own. Grace, Pace & Space indeed !

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  11. Chebby

    Dead cat.

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  12. Doc


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  13. Ross W. Lovell

    Greetings All,

    Own a VIIM and a IX.

    This is a parts car, I’m not even sure its worth $1500 as the extraction looks to be problematic and the cause of more damage. There are better parts cars for $1500.

    The car, sitting so low into the ground would make me think the floors are toast, along with the frame weakened.

    Not sure if they think the name will bring them a lot of money but I chase down leads all the time and I’m amazed how unrealistic prices can be on sedans because of the marque’s name.

    The price the seller put on this is ridiculous. More realistic if it was scrap value.

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  14. scott

    I’d love to restomod this to look something like a prewar Delage type french car. This may not be the one to do it with however.

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    • Alan Brase

      That might be a sensible use for the platform. Not sure starting with a 1949 designed engine is worth the trouble. But it would look period, for sure. Kinda sad to send such glorious bones to the crusher.
      Also need to keep in mind why is this thing sitting in a filed for 25 years? Broken tranny? Perhaps some mechanical reason. Gotta figure on fixing everything. I think the automatics are Borg Warner. Parts are out there.

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  15. Mark 'cuda man

    My father owned three 1948 Jag “Drop Heads”, and a parts car all at the same time 30 years ago. I think he got $4500.00 to $6,000.00 each for them. They were all original running cars, except the parts car. One of them was a silver with white top and red interior. I remember the buyer was a shop teacher in Canada who drove all the way down to south Fla. to buy and pick it up. I believe he also bought the parts car too and towed both of them back. I often wonder where those cars are today. They bring 60k to 90k today. Beautiful cars. I would love to have the Jag hood ornament off this listed one. It’s probably the only thing left on the car that has value……..

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  16. john C

    Dead cat ‘strut’ !!!

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  17. Ron Engel

    Jaguars have always be expensive! Why would you put a car like that to pasture? Now it would be a great Resto-Mod! Blower out of the hood ? Never liked Jaguars anyway,but what a shame!

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