Paul Walton

Paul Walton

Paul Walton Paul Walton TWR-powered 6.0-litre V12 318bhp 1990 Jaguar XJ12 Series 3 2 months ago

Big block XJ

I read with interest the feature on the TWR-engined XJ12, since I ran a similar vehicle myself a few years ago. Mine wasn’t quite up to the standards of your feature car though, having been created by an acquaintance who dabbled in breaking Jaguars. He bought a heavily accident-damaged XJ-S as a donor for a presentable but non-runner XJ12 and had the workshop perform the swap without realising that the XJ-S in question was a JaguarSport car.

The resulting creation may have been something of a ‘bitsa’ but as Paul Walton remarks in your story, was hilariously quick. The slightly ‘shabby chic’ body and paint only added to the appeal when taking on BMWs and GTIs at the lights, but eventually its thirst got the better of me and I traded it for something more sensible. Naturally having read the feature, now I wish I still had it.

Paul Walton Paul Walton 2023 Jaguar F-PACE SVR Edition 1988 7 months ago

’88 desperation Whilst I must admit the recently announced F-PACE SVR Edition 1988 looks tremendous, I can’t help thinking Jaguar’s marketing people are going to run out of obscure anniversaries fairly soon. Personally I fancy a Cannonball edition to commemorate the 1979 coast-tocoast run in an XJ-S. Don’t laugh, it could happen.

Paul Walton Paul Walton 1966 Lotus Elan S3 SE FHC Jim Clark’s last road car 11 months ago

Then and now, the Lotus Elan could appear to be not a lot of car for the money. Well, until you drive one...

Motoring enthusiasts unable to get to Earls Court in October 1962 for the London Motor Show merely had to pop along to their local cinema to catch the highlights brought to them by Pathé News. A bit more effort required than reaching for your smartphone these days, but surely a more enriching experience. Following a brief sequence on the previous year’s Jaguar E-type, we cut to a lipstick red Lotus Elan, loaded with three cheerful-looking young ladies and rotating on a turntable.

In between innuendo-laden quips, our commentator finds space to talk about the car, ‘Much smaller, but very much in the high-performance class, the Lotus Elan is built on the foundation of racing success and with refinements every owner will appreciate.’ When the cameraman manages to tear his lens away from the young ladies, Sixties motoring enthusiast gets to marvel at what lies beneath those cheeky glassfibre curves. Painted, plated and polished to a level that foretold Seventies customisation trends, the Elan’s simple backbone chassis, independent suspension and twin-overhead camshaft engine certainly promised to live up to the hyperbole of being a product of motor sport-tuned minds.

Strangely for such a racing-focused manufacturer, its Elan wasn’t intended for competition use and it was the customers who provided the initial push onto track. When I say push, that wasn’t meant to be a cheap jibe on the Elan’s swiftly-earned reputation for not always functioning as intended. What racers professional and amateur, and wannabe racers on the road soon discovered, was a machine that reinvented what could be expected from a small sports car, not just in dynamic agility, but how it juggled the conflicting needs of the hotshoe driver with those of the owner who didn’t feel that a tiresome lack of comfort should be an essential price to pay. The hefty £1500 purchase price was steep enough.

All that was 60 years ago and we’re still going on about it. Time for an anniversary special package of features then.

Paul Walton Paul Walton 1998 Jaguar XJ8 Executive X308 1 year ago

I’m a subscriber to your magazine following purchasing a copy off the shelf at WH Smith. Have to say, I really like it. Good layout and drops the pretentious typical Jaguar magazine whereby anything not an XJ or made pre-Ford ownership is ‘not a Jaguar’. Your piece comparing the X300 and X308 XJRs was a pleasure to read, informative and is what convinced us to become subscribers to your magazine especially as we own both an X300 and an X308.

So I was excited when our (terminally grumpy) postman dropped the April 2022 issue through the door, highlighting eight affordable classics to use every day, and what should be mentioned? The very lovely X308, with a side dish of Jaguar S-TYPE (owned one and was hideously unreliable but absolutely loved it), lightly garnished with X-TYPE too. This is going to be a cracker I thought. But with an X308 literally dripping in mud from another week’s work travels, and an X300 that is dead in the water thanks to a bad security module. Reading will have to wait until Sunday morning coffee. C’est la vie.

So this morning I delved in to see what’s been written and what comes out on top. And thoroughly loved the writeups. A very honest depiction on all eight but with one glaring mistake, a mistake that appears on the X308 write up and was then carried over to the S-TYPE write up. And that is one of road tax. You say that the Road Fund License is a ‘crippling £600’ for the 2002 made cars on the X308 because of the CO2 rules brought in in 2001. Yes, these rules were brought in and the later 2001-2002 cars are subject to this however (here’s where it gets interesting), cars with a CO2 figureover 225g/km and made before 23rd ofMarch 2006 actually slip into band K whereby they are only subjected to a “minor hobbling” of £360 per year cost, not the full ‘cut off at the knees’ £600. This too applies to the S-TYPE where it’s only the later cars post 2006 that get the full wallop of the £600. Pre-2001 cars are cheaper again being £280 per year, costing the same as an XJ6 Series 3 or XJ-S. Please, please, please can we be aware of glaring mistakes like these especially in articles where we are trying to convince people that these are an everyday option. Also I think they should both gain a star for economy… Go on, you owe it to them. My X308 XJ8 is an everyday miler.

Taking me from Plymouth to my work (Kingsbridge, Dartmouth and Newton Abbott) every day, racking up 40,50 even 60 miles a day. Now I may hear some of your readership gasp in horror (at either the audacity to treat an XJ as a workhorse or the fact I am single-handedly killing the planet while funding yet another party at Number 10 just on fuel duty), but it has proved as therapy to me for both the drive to and drive back from a busy day. As someone who has suffered severe bouts of depression, I am definitely of the mindset that sometimes you have to live a little every day to truly live a life. Pulled from a barn in a last minute bid to help a bride get to her wedding after being let down by someone else and our own X300 letting us down (on Father’s Day of all days), it was a dubious start to a relationship but one that’s blossomed into Darcy becoming a full blown member of the Brickell/Walsh household. I’ve also included some pics of her at a car meet recently, because, well, why not.

Anyway, keep up the (mostly) spot onjob of writing for this wonderful marque.

Paul Walton Paul Walton 2000 Rolls-Royce Corniche V 1 year ago

Corniche reinvention

The process of replacing any automotive design that’s achieved ‘legend in its own lifetime’ status during a lengthy career is fraught with danger. When the car in question is as upmarket and prestigious as a Rolls-Royce, however, the stakes are even higher. How will fans of the long-running original react to its successor? In the case of the 2000-model Corniche, the risk was reduced by the fact that five years had passed since the previous generation had met its demise. Time is a healer, as the saying goes, and the gap between the old and new Corniche was an advantage. What made the Corniche V (as it’s now generally referred to) particularly interesting, however, was its role as the last new Rolls-Royce from the marque’s historic Crewe headquarters. That it was also the only Rolls-Royce launched during Volkswagen’s brief custodianship of the marque adds a further touch of historical significance. The Corniche V was, of course, short-lived. And with fewer than 400 examples built in total, it was a rare sight even when new. But it can still be deemed a success, bringing a classic name back to life for one final fling. In this issue of Rolls-Royce & Bentley Driver, we get to experience what is surely one of today’s finest survivors, so check out the full story that starts on page 10. Meanwhile, don’t forget we’re offering some great subscription deals right now, not only saving you money but also guaranteeing direct delivery of every issue of your favourite magazine. Wherever you live in the world, all you need to do is visit to see the latest offers in your particular region. Oh, and if you’ve missed any copies over the last year or two, you can use the same link to order back issues – again available worldwide, with free postage for anyone in the UK. Enjoy!

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