At $9,500, Could This 2003 Jaguar S-Type R Turn You Into a Cat Lover?

Photo: Craigslist
Nice Price Or Crack PipeIs this used car a good deal? You decide!

The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Jag says he’s dumped ten-grand into its maintenance and repair with no corners cut in the work. Let’s see if this supercharged cat’s price cuts it any slack.

The SN95 Mustang seems to be the Jan Brady of Ford’s recent pony car models, meaning that it doesn’t get much respect or notice. Yesterday’s 1997 Mustang Cobra had some attention paid to it, with add-ons such as a supercharger and Saleen wing upping its power and personality.


Unfortunately the car’s Shinoda decals proved a less than popular addition. Intended to fete the designer of the late sixties and early seventies Boss 302 Mustang, those garishly over the top and down the sides decals more effectively recalled similar treatments from the seventies and eighties.

That all conspired to give the Mustang’s $13,250 present-day price a loss, falling in a 74 percent Crack Pipe vote.

With the Ford Motor Company whittling away products here in the U.S.—seemingly subscribing to the Isuzu business model of focusing on SUVs and light crossovers while abandoning the traditional sedan market—it’s easy to forget that the company once held sway over some of the most venerable “Car” companies in the world. During the Nineties, Ford had controlling interests in Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover (yes, I know they don’t make cars) and Volvo. At the time, Ford also maintained a vested interest in Mazda.

Those were halcyon days for both the Blue Oval, and car enthusiasts as Ford bundled the headquarters for their “Premier Automotive Group (PAG) in Irvine, California and that location served to foster one of the largest weekly Cars & Coffee events in the country.


That’s all gone now. Ford has divested in its extracurricular holdings, and Cars & Coffee has been banned from meeting in the parking lot of the former PAG headquarters, which now serves as the main offices of Taco Bell.


The detritus of Ford’s dalliance into global brand ownership is represented by today’s 2003 Jaguar S-Type R, a model developed under Ford’s parentage, and which shows a lot of familial resemblance under the skirts.

That’s the DEW platform, a RWD design that was shared on Ford’s side with the resurrected retro Thunderbird and the Lincoln LS. You still see T-birds rolling around with reasonable frequency, while the LS it seems has been relegated to the backs of milk cartons.


With its Eaton supercharged V8, the S-Type R is arguably the platform’s most expressive iteration. The DOHC mill managed to eke 390 horsepower out of its blown 4196-ccs. With its standard in the U.S. six-speed “J-gate” automatic, that offered up zero to sixty times of around five and a half seconds as well as a sound that could best be described as biblical.


In its ad, this ’03 R is said to be an uncommonly good edition of an already uncommon car. The seller claims to have put over $10,000 in maintenance and repairs into the car to keep it that way, and says that, in the application of those dollars, no corners were cut.


Now, when it comes to Jags and money spent you can usually expect one of two things—the money put into the car will keep it going without much trouble for the foreseeable future, or the car is a cursed money pit that will continue to swallow wallets whole until it gets dragged off to the junk yard.

Hopefully, this one is the former. Where did all that money go? Well, the ad lists a litany of work and updates so go read that and be impressed by what a 15-year old, 123,000 mile Jag can eat. It’s almost like having a real teenager in the house! All the A/C lines? The steering rack? Exhaust? Man, everything that could go wrong with this car seemingly already has, and has been fixed. That might make it a safe bet, as much like the house in The World According to Garp, it’s seemingly been pre-disastered.


The bodywork also looks to be in excellent and properly maintained shape. The ad notes that the car comes with Forgestar F14 aftermarket wheels. Those aren’t appalling, but if not your cup of tea, the ad notes that the car comes with the OEM spinners as well. Actually, the car is pictured with what looks to be three sets of wheels in the ad so what the new owner rolls out on might be a surprise.


You may not be a fan of the S-Type’s retro styling that sits atop its wheels. That recalls the earlier S-type of the sixties, to varying degrees of success. Jeremy Clarkson hated the looks so much he offered up a rare reproach of something British. That must have hurt. The interior’s a little better, although we don’t get much of a look at it, save for a single shot of the driver’s seat. The seller is much more interested in letting us see how he washes the car. Just a word of advice to other sellers, don’t do that.

The price is $9,500 and should you be in the market for one of these you will no doubt notice that prices and conditions are generally all over the board. This seems to be a model that people either love and minister with great care, or just shit on until they think it’s time for it to be someone else’s problem.


From the description in the ad, this car is obviously one of the former, but the question for you is whether that love and affection should continue. More importantly, is it worth $9,500 to do so?

You decide!


Philadelphia, PA Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

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About the author

Rob Emslie

Rob Emslie is a contributing writer for Jalopnik. He has too many cars, and not enough time to work on them all.