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Unleaded or Premium

Karl Jones

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Hi All

Just bought a S Type 3.0 ltr on a 2000 plate. just wondering which fuel would be the best to use. Unleaded or Premium unleaded. I cant ask the owner as he died, the reason I bought the car, his widow doesn't know.

Didn't want to put extra wear on the engine. Also what are the benefits of using the good stuff?



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Welcome to the club, Karl and Mike.


In my diesel s type I have used supermarket fuel half of the time, but I use the good stuff with an tankful of the very good stuff occasionally.  I notice the difference.


The 3.0 litre petrol engine is a very good motor, and sometimes appreciates the single malt, as it were.





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Thanks for the advice.

Could only get her taxed today, as I was waiting for my insurance certificate. so I've just took her for a run out and OMG.

What a drive. I forgot what's it like to drive a Jaguar. Its got so much more then most cars and some.

Anyway I'm off to polish her again.


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It'll run perfectly fine on the cheaper 92 RON unleaded. Engines after around 1988/ 1990 were designed to run on it after the removal of leaded fuel from the forecourts. The 97 RON will give you a marginally smoother response and a slight improvement in acceleration and economy, but it's a negligible amount.

As Peter says, you'll notice the difference, but you'll probably question if the difference is worth the extra money, especially as the 92 RON is what your engine is designed to run on. It's the minimum requirement it's designed to run on, but designed to run on it nonetheless.

It's really a personal preference thing. Try both and see which you prefer. You'll do no harm to your engine using either. The diesels are a little more fussy but that's because diesel is a dirty burning fuel and produces a lot of soot. Petrol is clean burning

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Hi Karl


There’s not much science behind what I can tell you but I hope my experience might be helpful.

Our family live in north Scotland, almost exactly 450 miles from our home. In recent years we’ve visited them about forty times. Creatures of habit, our route, driving style and refreshment stops are reasonably similar each time.

Out of curiosity I tried to assess whether the two petrol types made any difference and recorded the details of several round-trips, alternating the normal fuel with, what I call, the high octane stuff. Despite the extra cost of the premium fuel, indications were that the car consumed almost a gallon less over the 900 miles.

That excercise was in a Volvo S60 2.5T but, equally unscientifically, I sense that our S Type also prefers to sip the Premier Cru. 

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Being a high performance engine, it would appreciate Premium unleaded fuel, as it will be slightly more economical on it and produce sightly more power. It would run on Regular unleaded fine and it wouldn't cause any issues at all. To be honest the choise is yours. Personally, I run my 3.0l v6 SE on Premium, but its up to you.



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I run mine on Shell standard unleaded, I've tried running it to almost empty and then running it on Nitro +, personally I couldn't tell any difference and it was no better on fuel, but that was on a 4.2, maybe the V6's make better use of it.


One more small point, Jaguar engines of our era weren't really a performance engine. They're quite powerful but that's because they're big.


For instance the V6 is about 80 hp/ litre whereas a type R Honda from 10 years ago was 100 and revved to 8000 rpm

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Mike (Northants) makes a good point, my own 4.2 is amongst the least ‘sporty’ cars I’ve owned.


That said, here in North Wales we can enjoy some outstanding drives where the V8 really comes into its own, effortlessly prowling up mountain passes, graciously purring through rolling woodlands, and cossetting passenengers along a glittering coastline.


Yesterday was like that. With a few tasty indulgences en route for us, when we stopped at the petrol station, I thought it only fair for the big cat to get the cream!

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  • 8 years later...
  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/30/2022 at 8:34 PM, 10504mal said:

Can I use E5 petrol in my S type 3.0ltr V6 Jaguar on a 2002 plate?

You shouldn't have any problem using it, after all it's higher octane than E10 which has been forced on us by environmentalists and your fuel consumption should drop (and economy increase) due to the higher octane number.

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