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Meet 2JAGZ: A Turbo Toyota-Swapped Jaguar That Combines Two Childhood Dream Cars

For Bryan Pontifes, a love of Jaguar cars began at an early age. The shape of the body, the classic luxury vibe — and that iconic hood ornament were all things that that left an impression on him as boy.

As he got older, a Jag became a dream car of sorts for him, and fortunately unlike most dream cars, these used Jaguars from the ‘80s and early ‘90s were never terribly expensive.

2JZ-Swapped Jaguar XJ-S

In fact, at one point Bryan’s dad had an XJ6 with plans to LS-swap it, but the project never materialized and the chassis was sent to the scrapper after an unfortunate spider infestation.

The Attainable Dream

That didn’t cool Bryan’s interest in Jaguars, however. And in 2014, he and his dad had the chance to try again when the opportunity came up to purchase the 1990 XJ-S you see here.

Jaguar XJ-S on Nitto NT555 G2 tires

The car was a unfinished project from Driftmotion, a Southern California shop that specializes in the Toyota Supra and the 2JZ engine. And as you could guess, this particular Jaguar had its V12 engine replaced with Toyota’s bulletrpoof 2JZ.

Jaguar XJ-S on Nitto NT555 G2

For Bryan, this could not have been a better combo. Along with Jaguars, the fourth generation Toyota Supra had been another one of his boyhood dream cars, and the opportunity to combine both of them into one machine could not be passed up.

Jaguar XJ-S on Nitto NT555 G2

It wasn’t until 2020 after he graduated school when Bryan finally had the chance to finally start wrenching on the Supra — not just with the goal of getting the car on the road but also putting his own touches on it.

Japan Meets England

After a year and a half of work and then an extended period in the body shop for paint and body work, the Toyota-powered Jag only recently emerged as the classy machine you see here.

Jaguar XJ-S Front View

Looking at the exterior of the X-JS, the vibe is subtle. The front bumper is a custom job, while the side skirts, rear bumper and wing are from longtime Jaguar specialist TWR.

Jaguar XJ-S Rear View

The stance is also dialed in with a set of Gaz adjustable coilovers. And yes, the hood ornament that Bryan loves so much is present and accounted for.

It’s really only the front-mount intercooler (and the distinct turbocharged inline-six sounds) that suggest this old Jaguar has the heart of a Toyota.

Jaguar XJ-S Front View

Originally sourced from a Japanese market Toyota Aristo, the current engine setup is pretty mild by 2JZ standards. A Driftmotion CT26 turbo setup and some other basic upgrades have output right around 395 horsepower which is a significant upgrade from what the XJ-S put out 35 years ago.

2JZ-Swapped Jaguar XJ-S

The 2JZ is mated to a GM TH400 automatic transmission with a custom adapter plate and an upgraded torque converter helps the Jag make the the most of the turbo power off the line.

Jaguar XJ-S Shifter

The Perfect Mix

Last but not least are the wheels and tires. Wheels can absolutely make or break a build like this, and the classic BBS RS mesh wheels used here are 100% in the “make” category.

BBS LM Wheels

At 18”x9 up front and 18”x10 in the rear, the polished BBS wheels perfectly fill the Jag’s fenders without leaning too far into the “stance” look, with a vibe that’s equal parts Euro luxury and tuner function.

Jaguar XJ-S on Nitto NT555 G2

When choosing a tire to pair with the wheels, Bryan went with the Nitto NT555 G2 — 235/40R18 up front and 265/35R18 in the rear. And those Nitto NT555 G2s are well-suited for weekend cruising or putting the Jag through its paces in the hills above LA.

Jaguar XJ-S on Mountain Road

Though it’s been a long process to get the car where it is today, Bryan says there’s still work to do, with a “version 2.0” of the XJ-S already taking shape in his mind. A single turbo conversion with a goal of 600 horsepower and some additional exterior upgrades are both part of the plan.

Jaguar XJ-S on Mountain Road

But for now, it’s hard to ask for much more. Not only does the car combine two of Bryan’s dream cars, it’s a car that manages to stand out from the crowd even in the automotive paradise that is SoCal. We look forward what comes next.

Jaguar XJ-S on Nitto NT555 G2

Hard Facts

Vehicle: 1990 Jaguar XJ-S
Owner: Bryan Pontifes
Engine: Toyota Aristo 2JZ-GTE swap, Driftmotion CT26 turbochargers, three-inch exhaust, Magnaflow muffler, custom wiring harness, Koyo radiator
Drivetrain: GM TH400 transmission, custom adapter plate, upgraded torque converter, mild shift kit, Summers Brothers Racing axles
Suspension: Gaz coilover suspension, Brembo brakes
Body: Custom front bumper, TWS side skirts, TWS rear bumper, TWS rear wing, Satorini Black respray
Wheels: BBS LM 18"x9 (front) 18"x10 (rear)
Tires: Nitto NT555 G2 235/40ZR18 (Front) & 265/35ZR18 (Rear)
Interior: Factory interior, Turbosmart EBoost boost controller
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