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There’s Only One Problem: 1963 Jaguar Mk. II At No Reserve!


Honestly, it’s unfortunate that this car is up for sale at all. Apparently an older gentleman had a dream of restoring a Jaguar Mk. II, acquired this car, removed the engine to have it rebuilt and the engine was stolen. He’s giving up on the project now and the car is for sale here on eBay at no reserve, with bidding starting at $200 (!) It’s located in Cincinatti, Ohio.


As you can see, there’s rust in both rocker panels (but not as bad as I’ve seen on a lot of Mark II’s!) and some on the floors as well. Apparently the crime happened about 25 years ago and the car has been stored in a barn ever since. We’re led to believe in the ad that this is the original paint, and what you see is what you get; i.e. there’s no previous repairs hiding under newer paint.


Now the chrome and stainless are said to be pretty decent, especially for a driver, and I don’t see anything in the pictures to have me feeling differently. Here’s my question to the Jaguar experts out there: how different is a Mark II 3.8 XK engine from a later one, say out of an early 1980’s XJ6? I know it’s the same basic design, but if one could get away with dropping in one of those (running but rusty XJ6s are all over here for about $1,000) I’m thinking you could have this running pretty inexpensively while you looked for an original engine.


As you can see, the interior is a mixed bag, with horrible seat coverings and non-existent door panels but ok wood and all gauges present. Now this is an expensive project to do correctly for sure! Thankfully, the manual transmission and overdrive are still present, making this one of the most desirable Mark II models.


Here’s that hole where the engine should go. I’m really wondering what it would take to get a later model engine to fit? Be sure and tell me if it’s possible; what I really want is an S-Type, but I shouldn’t be so picky, right?


  1. Bingo

    Thank you, Jamie, for door panels and not door “cards”. Ugg!!

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    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      I see that term a lot in the British car magazines. My Dad was a Brit, and he used “panels”, so it works for me :-)

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  2. CoventryCat

    A 4.2 would work, but an engine out of a $1000 special will have its own set of problems to deal with. This will need bags of money anyway so put a crate SBC in it. The Daimler versions had V8’s, so why not? I used to be a purist about things, not so much anymore…

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  3. Kent Pearson

    When Ford owned Jaguar, they must have changed everything so why no if you could get a custom exhaust to sound like a jag, all the better.

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  4. Glen

    I’ve never heard the term door “cards” before. I guess it’s an American term. (I’m Canadian). It’s a shame that he didn’t get to see his dream come true, because some jerk stole the engine.

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    • whippeteer

      I’m an American and I never heard of them being called “door cards” before coming to Barn Finds. Must be regional.

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  5. jake

    A 4.2 out of a later jag would work, but as said who knows what problems and you’d need carbs and other items to get it running!!! Door cards are from my experience with buying parts from england are an english term, kinda like asking a limey about pricing on a hodd-correct trem bonnet, lol..

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  6. Ken Nelson Member

    I have a nice ’64 3.8 in running condition, twin SUs with a complete extra intake & carbs, and 4 speed gearbox with overdrive available, bought with the crazy idea of dropping it in a Bristol 405 rolling shell I acquired, BUT the 3.8 won’t fit without a bunch of butchering – my mistake. I’m not that knowledgeable about Jags, but I have this engine running in my trailer, after overhauling the starter, changing the oil & filter and cleaning the carbs. It fires right up and my compression measurements were all around 140 psi, with no smoke at all straight out the exhaust manifold, and nothing but good engine noise – no rattles/clatters. Only issue is the engine is in San Jose Ca., but possibly could be strapped to a pallet after draining the oil. If the winner of this car is interested in my engine & gearbox, contact me offline at citbuff@gmail.com. I had dreams but bought too quickly without checking the car, as it was in the neighborhood and I hadn’t come across as nice a combination, especially with the overdrive. Oh well……

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  7. Zaphod

    Easy fix. i’ve got a couple of engines if anyone is going for this. I’ve also got 4 donor cars, axles, interiors and doors. pjhavas@gmail.com

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  8. Chris

    I would drop a small block Chevy in this and have fun with it.

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    • Dave Wright

      That is absolutely silly, it would take more work to install tha small block than just finding an orignal engine. Engines are not that expensive and you have lost 50% of the cars value with a Chevy in it. These cars rust badly and there are many rusted hulks around with decent running gears for completing this nice chassis.

      Like 0
  9. Doyler

    Definite JTR candidate. Sad story though

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  10. Howard A Member

    SMALL BLOCK CHEVY! oops, sorry, I’m yelling. Dave, by all means, do what you want. The SBC or any small block V-8 and modern trans. would just be the way to go. I’d want to drive this, not tinker on it (in the rain)(at night)(in the rain)

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    • Dave Wright

      A lot more work, probably a lot more money and 1/2 the value………..sounds like a great idea……

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  11. 68 custom

    My buddy had a later XJ-12 with the SBC swap and even that could not make the Jag a reliable cruiser. I say slap a SBC in there and get rid of as much lucas wiring/relays as possible. great looking cars, but in 63 I bet they looked kinda old fashioned…

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  12. Ric Parrish

    I had one with a Buick in it, while living in Iowa City. Lots of power, but no brakes. Also very rusted out headers, sounded like sh*t. Was fast but wouldn’t stop.

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  13. Peter

    The Daimler V8 was 2.5 litres with 3-speed Borg Warner auto gearbox (but sounded like a big V8). My understanding is that the 3.8 Jag engine can rev a bit better than the 4.2 as the bigger engine has a longer stroke on an already long stroke engine.

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  14. John

    My Dad had a RHD version of this car. It was even the same color. He had lots of issues with it but he still loved it. What I remember most was the wonderful smell of leather on the inside. I always wished I could have bought the car, but I was a kid, and the car went away in exchange for the most boring, but totally reliable Mercedes (180D). The Benz smelled like diesel fuel and plastic.

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  15. Mike Burnett

    Door cards is an English term and are so called because they were mostly made of compressed and waxed cardboard covered with leatherette or leather. Also, please do not refer to us as ‘limeys’ as it is nowadays considered an insult in England.

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  16. Little_Cars Alexander Member

    “Panels” are the steel skins on the outside IMHO. “Cards” are the upholstery on the inside cabin. Been ordering replacement door cards for interior restorations since the 1970s. Not a regional term at all. Who’s with me here?

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  17. Mark P

    I’ve always called them door panels here in the North East, only started hearing the term door cards when watching Wheeler Dealers. The tools used to remove the window cranks and latches are door panel removal tools.

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  18. bcavileer

    Door cards as long as i recall, panels are steel ie. Panel beaters for body men.
    And mostly compressed sawdust with glue.

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  19. Roadstir

    “Ran when parked”

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