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TPH

F type UK headlamps - driving abroad

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I thought it would be useful to post my recent experience with Jaguar concerning the use on the continent of headlamps on a 2013 UK registered F Type convertible.

I recently purchased the car in the UK with the intent of importing it to Spain. Before purchase, I thoroughly checked the compatibility of the xenon headlamps and all Jaguar F type manuals since 2013 state the following:

“HEADLAMPS – DRIVING ABROAD

The headlamp beam pattern is suitable for driving on either side of the road. There is no need for any mechanical adjustment orc external decals.”

It was to my surprise that when trying to pass the Spanish MOT test that the car failed on the headlamp beam pattern. I contacted Jaguar who came back with the following statement:

“Driving abroad … would not refer to permanent homologation and registration of the vehicle in another market as there is no requirement to register a vehicle abroad to simply visit.”

What Jaguar seem not to realise is that there is a requirement for headlamps to conform to local conditions and I find it inexcusable that they include this text in their manuals as it is simply incorrect – if one uses these RHD headlamps on the continent, (i.e. driving on the right,) whether it be for one year, one week or one day, they will disturb oncoming drivers which is a clear infraction. I travel a great deal back and forth from Spain to the UK and based my purchase of the vehicle on the erroneous information in the manual. I've taken the step of writing this post to warn any UK based F type owners visiting the continent that they could be breaking the law using their UK headlamps in Spain, (and presumably in any other RHD country also,) having followed, as I did, Jaguar’s misleading information in their manuals.

At great expense, I have now changed the headlamps to LHD versions and the car has passed its MOT. What will happen when I next visit the UK with the car will have to be seen as I imagine a lot of drivers will be flashing me due to my misaligned headlamps .......

Thanks.

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