We occasionally write a short article about our processes, experiences and other topics, so please take a look and click 'More...' to read the full article.

Our Approach to Diagnostics

With nearly 30 years experience on Jaguar diagnostics we have developed a structured and methodical approach to diagnostic testing. We are committed to properly diagnosing and repairing your Jaguar in a timely and cost effective way.

The three questions we always get asked first of all are: what is wrong, how much will it cost and how long will it take. Unfortunately these are the answers that we are unable to give at the start. We will discuss with you the approach that we would like to take with your particular problem, this will be based on the information you provide and also try to establish a budget that you are comfortable with for the diagnostic assessment. A realistic time/budget is usually between 1-2 hours. Depending on the complexity of the problem, it may take considerably less time or we may need more time. After the initial agreed time we may have a solution for you or if not then our initial assessment will have helped us to formulate a clearer plan as to how to proceed. Unfortunately a lot of problems are intermittent and sometimes the problem may not reveal itself during the course of our testing. For us to identify the cause of a problem the symptoms need to be present during testing. This may lead to multiple appointments or keeping your Jaguar in the workshop for an extended period of time. Jaguars have complex layers of technology and sometimes multiple layers of testing and/or repairs may be required to solve the issues.

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The Orange Light of Horrors

Switching on the ignition of your Jaguar brings about a dazzling display of glowing lights as the car's computers spring into life. There'll be symbols providing the status of Oil Pressure, Battery, ABS Brakes, Airbag, Traction/Stability Control, Handbrake, Seatbelt and the amber Check Engine light (or engine management light).

Unfortunately, the sudden appearance of this orange light can give any driver a horrible sinking feeling. To make matters worse, a glance through the relevant section of the car’s handbook generally says something reassuring along the lines of 'Drive Straight to the Nearest Dealer' The reason for this reaction could be, that unlike a simple coolant or battery light, which you might assume means that the engine needs water or the battery is going flat, the engine management light is a bit of a mystery and brings fear that it may lead to major expense. What it actually indicates is that your car's engine management computer (ECU) has detected a fault with one of the numerous pieces of information it gathers about the engine from an array of sensors and modules. If ANY of these detects a fault, the outcome for the driver is the same, i.e. the same engine management light illuminates.

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Cost of Diagnostics

One of the most controversial and confrontational subjects in the motor trade is the charge for diagnostics. Should a customer pay for the time the technician takes diagnosing what is wrong with their vehicle or only for the repairs that are actually made? Surely these days a technician just has to plug the diagnostic machine in and it will tell them what is wrong?

Everyone, from customers to journalists have a strong opinion on this topic. But what's often not heard is a garage owners point of view on the subject, so here goes...

At Nene Jag Specialists - 'We sell service, knowledge & experience' because service, knowledge & experience are not tangible items, it often doesn't appear to have intrinsic value. But anyone who has experienced bad service knows how crucial good service can be.

Sometimes it's difficult for a customer to understand the value of our technician's time. At a supermarket a joint of beef, a loaf of bread, a pint of milk has a tangible value that's reflected in the price. You pay money and you get to take it home. But service/knowledge/experience isn't something you can take home, it isn't something you can hold in your hands. What if you were to see a consultant privately & you were unable to get a diagnosis the first time you saw them? Or you required further treatment to get well again? After the appointment, you would never refuse to pay their consultation fee because you didn't get the results you were looking for immediately or because you needed additional treatment. We pay experts for their time, training, and the skills they have acquired—no quick, immediate results are guaranteed.

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Earning Trust

One of the things I love about my job is that each day is different. Even though we only do the one make of car, each day brings new challenges, different customers and a selection of models. With Clive busy working on whatever Jaguars are in the workshop, my job in the office is to keep him supplied with the correct parts and the correct information.

Its my job in reception to answer the calls, deal with the customers, produce the job cards for the workshop, provide estimates and order any parts required. As well as doing the accounts, marketing and any other admin. It's a busy role. It is also my job to put customers minds at rest and assure a potential new customer that we are the right garage for them. Unfortunately, they may have had a bad experience at another garage and part of my role is to earn their trust.

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The cheaper meat curry is probably not going to contain succulent juicy lamb. The cheaper tomato ketchup never quite tastes the same as a more well-known brand, the cheaper washing up liquid never lasts as long because we need to use twice as much for it to be to be effective.

It can be so tempting to save money that we may sometimes overlook the provenance of what we buy because the price is attractive to us. Just as we might hope that the cheaper 'meat' curry might be full of tender meat, we understandably have similar hopes and expectations of other products and services. A sausage only actually must contain 32% pork to be classed as a pork sausage. Things are not always what they may appear to be at first sight.

So, what about all the services for your car that are advertised for £59/£79/£99? Yes an oil and filter change is classed as a service and your service record can be updated.

Why would you pay £2 for tomato ketchup when you can buy a bottle for 50p?

Why would you get your Jaguar serviced at a Jaguar Specialist when you can get your service book updated and an oil and filter change carried out at a 'far smaller cost'?

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Behind Every Good Man There is a Woman

I'm Julia, Clive's wife (or better half perhaps?!). We have been married now for 33 years and have three beautiful grown up 'little' girls. When I left school, I studied for a childcare qualification. I then worked for social services with families and under-fives for about 8 years. After that I worked in the Homeless Shelter in Peterborough. Both jobs were very demanding, hard work but extremely rewarding and I loved them.

I was very involved in helping Clive to set up and run Nene Jag Specialists in 1993 and then in 1995 I took the plunge and had a total change of career to work with him full time in the business. This was a massive step as I knew nothing about business and even less about cars. So, the last 27 years have been a steep learning curve and I now know a little bit more about cars and a little bit more about business.

My role involves greeting customers, answering the phone, dealing with queries, pricing, ordering parts, invoicing, accounts, social media and marketing. The most important part of my job is to discuss a customer's Jaguar with them, understand what work they need, to explain what work may be required and answer any queries they may have.

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