1976 Jaguar XJ12 C
Rare Series II
1976 Jaguar XJ12C Coupe
- 5.3L/285HP V12
- Bosch Fuel Injection
- TH700R4 Transmission
- 4 Speed with Overdrive
10,426 Coupes were produced, 2,262 were V-12's
Only 1,269 Left Hand Drive V-12 Coupes were produced
Around 26 are estimated to have survived in the U.S., perhaps 290 world wide
(Please note: If you happen to be viewing this 1976 Jaguar XJ12 C on a website other than our Garage Kept Motors site, it's possible that you've only seen some of our many photographs of the car due to third-party website limitations. To be sure you access all the more than 140 photographs, as well as a short start-up and walk-around video, please go to our main website: Garage Kept Motors.)
“A very rare car in this form combining grace, space, and pace….” – Classic Driver website, July 2021
The Classic Driver website went on to tell the story of the development of the XJ 12 C: “The XJ series of motorcars became the mainstay of Jaguar cars post 1968 and, in fact, was the last motorcar to have any input by Sir William Lyons, the company's founder. After the series 1 and 2, a relatively short run of two door XJ coupés with a pillarless hardtop body called the XJ-C were built between 1975 and 1978. Whilst the car was actually launched at the London Motor Show in October 1973, it soon became clear that it was not ready for production, and the economic troubles unfolding in the western world at the time reduced further any sense of urgency about producing and selling the cars. They finally started to emerge from Jaguar show-rooms some two years later and were priced higher than the four-door car becoming immediately relatively exclusive. The profile of these sought-after touring cars was so attractive, with windows down, that today they are often hard to find in good condition.”
Offered here is a beautifully maintained 1976 Jaguar XJ12 C in white over black. The car was rare even when new (of 10,426 coupes built, just 2,262 were powered by the V12), and its pristine condition speaks volumes about the meticulous attention the car has received over the years. Showing 58,542 miles on its odometer, or roughly just 1,300 miles per-year on average since new, this Jag has been treated from day-one like the very special automobile it is.
The exterior white paint shows few age-related flaws, but excellent gloss across every body panel. There is no impact-damage to the sheet metal. The coupe's gracefully sloped roofline is emphasized with a factory-original black vinyl covering, free of imperfections. Characteristically tasteful Jaguar brightwork has been properly cared for through the years with only the barest minimum of age-related, light patina on some surfaces. The bespoke front grille and trim surrounding the four individual headlights (as well as the beautifully curved surrounding bodywork) is perfect. The “leaping cat” hood ornament, fender badges, and the “V12” badge atop the grille are correctly in place. “Black-accented bumpers fore and aft (with its sweeping wraparound design) are undamaged. In the same way, the rear badging—“Jaguar Fuel Injection” on the left, and the large “XJ12 C” model-identification on the right—are pristine, as are the escutcheons atop the rear deck. The ever-so-gracefully-curved body side trim is free of any signs of door impact, probably as reliable an indicator as any of committed-owner care. Cabin glass and all lighting lenses are clear. Factory chrome 15-inch wheels (with cat-logo center caps) are mounted with thin-stripe whitewall radial tires. The matching spare is mounted in the well-kept "boot."
The care bestowed on the interior surfaces is equally impressive. Burled wood trim—a Jaguar-factory art form—on the doors, dashboard, and console has been beautifully maintained free of damage or sun-fading. Vertically pleated, black leather upholstery is free of any damage or surface deterioration, with only the driver's lower seat cushion showing slight looseness. The brushed-metal factory-installed, Lecarrera® steering wheel (note the way the flathead screws are all perfectly aligned to its circumference) with its Jaguar-logo center and brass-riveted wood rim frames a full array of original Smiths® gauges with warning lights in the center. The center stack (top to bottom) includes air-conditioning vents, an added Magellan® digital map, factory analog clock, and a Kenwood® audio head unit mounted in the factory-radio location. The console hosts the shifter for the TH700R4 4-speed automatic transmission (with overdrive), and several toggle-switch controls. Cabin floors are carpeted in black, and the rear parcel shelf features stereo speakers.
Opening the front-hinged hood reveals the mechanically stunning, Bosch® fuel-injected, 5.7-liter 12-cylinder engine (notably free of any of the plastic cladding so routinely in place on present-day engines). When new, the engine produced 285 horsepower. The surfaces here are all properly clean but thankfully not overly “detailed” with spray-on shine products. All components are properly mounted, and all hoses and wiring are correctly routed. In a typically understated way, the “Jaguar” identification appears on only one of the two valve covers. Viewed from below, the car's chassis is clean, complete, and free of any damage. The properly-routed, full-length dual exhaust system and the independent rear suspension are visual focal points.
The car's factory identification and build tags remain mounted.
While the more than 140 high-definition photographs and the short walk-around-and-startup video available on the GarageKeptMotors website showcase this '76 80012 C in detail from every angle, including from below, we expect and encourage in-person inspections at our Grand Rapids, Michigan showroom. Please call to arrange an appointment in advance as our showroom is not open to the public. And feel free to get in touch anytime by phone or email if you have questions.
The “big Jags” of this era are exceptional automobiles, beautifully styled, powerful, and luxurious. Those with 12-cylinder engines, even more so. And coupes, with just 26 of this type believed still in existence in the U.S, are as rare as perfect sunny days in London. Taken altogether, that makes this XJ12 C in its exceptional condition, a truly special opportunity for the classic-British automobile enthusiast, one of whom is no doubt reading this right now.