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Our Man in LA - JagUar XKR Daily Driver

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

Nicholas Frankl’s daily driver.

I bought the Jaguar XKR in August 2004. It had 27,000 miles and was located only 1.5 miles from my house at Sports Trend Auto on Ventura Blvd.

I had Galpin Jaguar do the once over and with a clean bill of health saved myself over $30,000 on list. XK’s are one of the best second hand buys – just ask Mr Rettie – who is also a proud owner!

I just wanted to enjoy the LA weather and have space for more than 2 people, yes it’s a 2+2 and ‘economical’ in the rear but you can squeeze a few friends in for short journeys which comes in surprisingly useful.

With 370bhp on tap the car is fairly quick anyway – but I’ve spent a year putting together a performance package through various sources.

It started with new 20in wheels. Victor at CEC on Santa Monica Blvd imported a beautiful set of Antera 349’s from Italy and Peter at Pirelli supplied the considerable rubber, 245/35front and 275/30 rear.

BORLA supplied their beautiful stainless steel exhaust (good for about 12bhp at the rear wheels) and K&N came in with a new air filter.

I then spent ten months trying to find other quality suppliers. Finally I discovered Chris at LA based Jaguar XP in Van Nuys. As well as supplying everything 30% off retail, they also manufacture performance parts and supply upgrades for the supercharger pulley (an increase of 13-15bhp and 1.5lbs of additional boost) and a high performance air intake system which is particularly effective above 4,500 revs and provides another 12bhp.

Jaguar XP has a veritable Aladdin’s cave of interior and exterior bits too, so I also installed a mate black front grill, which looks very mean, aluminum instrument rings, bezel and gear knob, the front rotors were warped a little and were also replaced.

The end result?

The timeless classy shape has a more muscular look, the engine has an extra 50bhp (420bhp now and able to see off most exotica) and the car will stay fresh until the new XKR arrives in 2007, and which I hear is awesome.

Basically, for a Brit, it’s a brilliant LA daily driver.

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