Project Car Hell: Jaguar XK-E or Citroen SM?

After presenting our readers with the soul-wrenching choice between two V12 Jaguars in last Friday's PCH (which, by the way, had the '87 beating the '76 by a comfortable margin in your poll vote), you'd think we'd take a break from British steel for a while. But, see, that isn't how Hell works- in Hell, the only way to escape a British car is to take a French car instead. And to lure you into the flames, we've selected a pair of the most beautiful car designs ever to come from their respective nations (evil laughter).


When you're talking serious British sports cars, you'll put the Jag E-Type near the top of any list. It's just plain gorgeous, with pretty decent power and style to burn. You know you want one. And if you've got five grand burning a hole in your pocket, you can have this one! Yes, that's not a typo: a '67 XK-E 2+2 for just five Gs. Sure, the 2+2 was a bit less sporty than the two-seater, but it's slightly more practical and not quite as common. That sounds great, you say, but what's the catch? Must there always be a catch? we reply. Well, unfortunately, there might be one or two flaws with this Jag; the seller allows that there might be a bit of rust. The seller is a man or woman of very few words, so there's no mention of inconsequential matters such as mechanical condition, registration, interior, electrical stuff, etc... but it is "very restorable," so it should be just a few weekends before you're turning heads with your very own E-Type!

It's hard to find a prettier car than a 60s XK-E, but the Citroen SM certainly makes a strong case. In case you've forgotten, the SM already resides in the Jalopnik Fantasy Garage, which means this '72 SM is the very first car seen in both the PCH and the JFG! We're almost ashamed to tell you the price on this car, lest you think we've been alternating huffs of ether with shots of retsina all weekend long. OK, twist our arms: it's only $2950. That's right, you heard right. More than two grand cheaper than the Jag! This one needs some work, of course; other than the missing window glass, we're not sure what it needs, but it's safe to assume that the list is fairly long. The seller doesn't waste time getting into the minor details, such as who-cares crap like running condition or even when it last moved under its own power, but he or she wants us to know that "the motor is the 3.0 litre and worth my asking price" and "the five speed is very desirable." In fact, there's pretty much zero description of the car itself in the listing. Hmmm... do you suppose a '70 Eldorado engine/transaxle combo can be made to fit in this car?

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