If you own an older Jaguar sedan, you can travel down a variety of roads with it. You can hold on to it and do your best to maintain it and keep it going as times rolls on. You can hand it down to a sibling or one of your children to use. You can sell it privately or trade it in toward the purchase of a newer vehicle. The crew at Car Throttle is going down a road in a Jaguar X-Type no one’s ever traveled. It’s full of grease and questions and frustration, but will lead to an off-roader that’s more Land Rover than Jag: Project Mud-Type.
Car Throttle had to get a donor car first, though. Host Alex Kersten found a metallic green X-Type with a 2.5-liter gas V6, five-speed manual gearbox, and all-wheel drive. The years that have passed since the one-owner X-Type was new haven’t taken too heavy a toll on the baby Jag. Its paint looks decent, the leather and faux wood has gone more or less unscathed, and the engine still runs smoothly, even after covering 183,000 thousand miles. Not bad for $697.
Take a good long look at the X-Type in the above video, because it’s not going to be this way for long. Kersten plans on converting the Jag into a rock-crawling, muck-slinging monster. Kiss that posh and polished interior goodbye because it’s probably going to be ripped out to save weight. As Kersten puts it, he’s going to transform the X-Type from “road wafter to off-road weapon.” How? By lifting it, throwing on new wheels and knobby tires, installing a snorkel, bolting in a louder exhaust (perhaps one with side pipes), attaching a bull bar, and putting in a winch and other trail-ready parts. Why? A better question is “Why not?” There are thousands of Jaguars in the world, but none like what Kersten and his crew have in mind.
Kersten takes the X-Type down another road that most owners of the compact sedan have never taken it down. Literally. He points its quad headlights down a rutted, muddy path and adds gas. His X-Type does have all-wheel drive, after all. It sends 40 percent of the V6’s 180 lb-ft of torque to the front wheels and the remaining 60 percent to those in the back.
It doesn’t take long for Kersten to get bogged down and stuck. He doesn’t seem concerned and decides to try powering out of Mother Nature’s filthy clutches. He gets nowhere fast. All he succeeds in doing is generating a ton of smoke and making the ABS failure light turn on.
Over the course of five more segments, Kersten will show the progression of Project Mud-Type. He and the gang at Car Throttle have their work cut out for them. They have to get a lift custom made and rip out the old exhaust and replace it with a straight-pipe setup. Installing the right off-road tires and roof rack is also on the list. Kersten and his team have to give the X-Type the differential it’ll need to handle the rigors of its second life, too. Then it’ll be time to find out if all of their mods worked.