It was a sad week for all sorts of reasons, but one was the sudden death of US musical superstar Tom Petty at 66 years of age.
Petty was a big car enthusiast too, and his favourite was one of the last XJS models ever made. Introduced in 1975 as a successor to the iconic E-Type,the XJ-S (this was the official name until 1991) was originally offered as a coupe only. Powered by a massive 5.3-liter V-12, the car was gorgeous and on par with Lamborghini and Ferrari products performance-wise. A revised model was launched in 1981, with targa and convertible versions introduced in 1983 and 1988, respectively. An inline-six engine was added. The third-generation model changed the name from XJ-S to XJS and brought more modern styling cues, but the car remained recognizable on the outside. Production of the luxury two-door ended in 1996 when it was replaced by the XK8. That’s when Petty ordered his own.
And his choice had quite the interesting story, as described when he sold the car for charity in 2012.
“I have so many great memories associated with this car,” said Petty. “When I began dating Dana (his wife), I asked her what her favorite car was. So, I phoned the office and said I wanted a champagne convertible Jaguar XJS. The next day, they delivered it to my house and showed me how everything worked, and I took it for a drive down the Pacific Coast Highway. I was in heaven, as was Dana. This car has such an incredible design. My favorite car I ever owned. We sure are going to miss it.”
The convertible was auctioned off on eBay, and all proceeds went to Doctors Without Borders, a medical humanitarian organisation.
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