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Thread: 95 Lincoln Town Car

  1. #1
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    95 Lincoln Town Car

    I just got offered what looks like a screaming deal on one. Body sound, interior clean, shows a little wear, good rubber. Apparently needs a crank position sensor to make it run. This is a 4.6 liter OHC V8. I don't know diddly squat about them. Looks like it would make a darn fine driver if the engine could be made to run.

    Anyone here got some knowledge?
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    I have driven thousands of miles in 1990s Lincoln Town Cars in livery use. I liked driving them and they seemed to stand up under abuse by many drivers. They each covered 60K to 75K miles per year and were kept about three years.

    I never had to work on one and never knew of one that failed on the road. Any idea of the miles on the car in question? Bob A., that used to frequent here, would know more about them mechanically. In another three years it will be considered an antique (at least here).

    If the "screaming deal" is under $500, I would consider it.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
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    Five hundred is the asking price, they may well deal. Car is Arizona, but may not have come from there. But not rusty anywhere.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    President Member t walgamuth's Avatar
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    They are very well built cars. My paper carrier has one that is pretty old but still purring along.
    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

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    President Member ddub's Avatar
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    A friend of ours has two of them, has driven nothing else for close to 20 years and loves them. No serious problems.
    Don Wilson, Centralia, WA

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    These cars have a long history of longevity. The one thing about those V8's is that all the vacuum lines must..and I repeat..must be tight. No leaks at all or they just won't run. This includes the PCV valve cover boot which is notorious for leaking. No vacuum no go. Engine might fire but will not run well at all. Check all lines before going into electrical. Ask me how I know.

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    In the early 90's the 4.6L engine, design became the standard for FMC, and lasted for decades. After the mid 90's most police cars, taxis and full sized limousines used this basic engine. When the Mustang/Lightning, performance engine is included it pretty much served all of Ford's product lines. It is not unusual to see these in service vehicles with over half a million miles on them.

    I like the rear wheel drive Ford product, and drive one daily. There is much more to like then just the engine. For me it's a combination of looks, comfort, reliability and price. It seemed to me that during the 90's when all the other domestic car companies lost their way, and switched to FWD cars, Ford was the only one left producing a car that I wanted to drive.

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    One caution, I believe that these have the air suspension. The bladders take the place of the car's springs. They are great when working properly, but with 23 years under the car's belt, either they have been replaced, or they will be needing replacement. Find out about the car's history and what service work has been done. Gord it wouldn't be an issue for me, and it sure shouldn't for you.

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    Throughout the '90's that was the only car we ever rented while at the SEMA Show because it was still RWD. Even off-roading in Death Valley and the Mohave Desert didn't kill it. We ascertained that the "S" speed rating tires killed our computer limiter at 112 MPH whereas the Ranger's Bronco (who was in pursuit through the desert) topped out at much less. It is absolutely amazing what capability rental cars have.
    Bill

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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzzard View Post
    It is absolutely amazing what capability rental cars have.
    Bill
    Buz, you hit it right on the head. P.J. O'Roarke touched on this some time back with the debate, what handles better, FWD, RWD or AWD? Frankly, doesn't matter cause rental cars always handle better. They handle rougher roads, deeper sand and snow as well as the salt at Bonneville (just make sure to wash the salt off before turning in). They will slide better and do far better bootlegger turns too. They jump better than a Meyers Manx. I have it under authority that they slide down armco railings better as well.

    Ya, here's to rental cars!

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    Rented one back in the day for a trip from Nebraska to Maine and back, we had no problems with the Lincoln on the trip.
    \"I\'m getting nowhere as fast as I can\"
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    President Member Jeff_H's Avatar
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    Gord, just happened to watch a video on youtube about the "10 best" used cars under $3000 (or was it $5000? or $1500...). Any rate, the Crown Victoria was on this list. Mostly same mechanicals as that town car. One thing mentioned was if the car was earlier than 2001 to check out the front of the plastic intake manifold for leaks. The later cars went to a combo aluminum/plastic one and there was a upgrade or recall for the older cars if they started leaking.

    My late dad had a '97 grand marquis from about 2002 to 2007. I think the only problem he had was a bad idle solenoid at one point and the battery died suddenly when he and mom were on a trip. Traded on a 2004 grand marquis in 2007. My Mom still has it but no longer drives so it does not get used much.

    Jeff in ND

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    President Member WinM1895's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hallabutt View Post
    One caution, I believe that these have the air suspension. The bladders take the place of the car's springs. They are great when working properly, but with 23 years under the car's belt, either they have been replaced, or they will be needing replacement.

    Find out about the car's history and what service work has been done. Gord it wouldn't be an issue for me, and it sure shouldn't for you.
    Get the VIN, take it to a Ford dealer, have them run an Oasis Report. The entire service history will be known.

    Town Car/Crown Victoria/Grand Marquis are basically the same. These are 'Panther' platform cars (body on frame construction), were running on test stands in 1976.

    LTD (name changed to Crown Victoria in 1983) and Grand Marquis introduced in 1979, Town Car in 1980.

    Questions? I have the Ford/Lincoln/Mercury passenger car parts catalog for these cars.

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    True what Jeff said about the intake manifold. I have two mid 90's Thunderbirds, and a Lincoln Mark VIII, all of which are daily drivers. Replaced the intake on one of them and monitor the others. The part is available, and it takes about an hour, maybe a little more, to change.

    I always think about the Crown Vic's when I start looking for my rwd Fords, but always seem to find a decent TBird typ, in better shape, and for less money, then the later CV. Never driven a CV in the snow, but I hope that it's better then the TBird type. I would think that with posi, independent rear, and traction control, that TB's would be better then they are in the snow. Luckily we don't have much snow here, but when it does snow I just get out the old Jeep Cherokee.

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    Kind of funny take on the Lincolns, but here goes.
    On one our many SEMA adventures, we had rented a BRAND NEW Town car in LA and headed east across the Mohave Desert, the most direct route to Vegas of course. I don't know if it was the same incident as noted above regarding the Ranger, but in retrospect I think not. Anyhow if you have ever experienced the desert roads they go up then down which is doable at 40 MPH however, if you ramp that up to warp speed the undercarriage hits on about every third or fourth wash dip as the air suspension loads and unloads. Once into Vegas we sought out a Lincoln dealer and I went in to make an appointment seeing as the car could no longer be shut off without being unable to restart. It was kind of a pill as you had to turn the wheels into a berm if you got out to take a picture or whatever. The service advisor politely asked me why I wanted all the shift linkage replaced on a brand new car and I replied "because it isn't there!". The humor doesn't stop there as on the way to the hotel I started to laugh somewhat uncontrollably and my pal asked me what was so funny. I said I must be the only lunatic in America paying $59.95 (the going Licoln rate) to rent a Mercury Topaz, which at the time was only $19.95 and was the replacement unit at the dealership. Oh yeah, fun when were younger.
    Bill

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    Speedster Member avanti-hawk's Avatar
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    The Town Cars only had rear axle Air Bag suspension. Continental had all 4 corner air bags. Easy fix if they are bad. Go to junkyard, get steel coils and hardware from Crown Vic or Grand Marquis

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    Or get some of the readily available bladders and enjoy the ride the way it was intended. I drive TBirds with springs, and a Mark VIII with air suspension, and there really is a difference. The bladders are no harder to replace. then replacing them with springs.

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    Well, I wound up getting this car, and it was a mistake for sure. The engine is kaput. Left bank, 1,2,3,4, 40, 75, 65, 45 psi compression. Right bank, 5,6,7,8, 0,0,0, 10 psi. Pulled off the RH cam cover, timing mark on cam appears to be where it is supposed to be when the crank is at TDC mark. Hooked air compressor to right bank cylinders: 5,6,8 have air blowing past intake valve; #7 has huge leak into crankcase, so hole in piston. I did rotate the engine to ensure the valves were both closed on each cylinder under leakdown check.

    I don't think it's worth my while to put an engine in it, unless I can get an engine for almost nothing. I will probably part it out. Anybody need anything?
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    President Member r1lark's Avatar
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    What do the wheels look like? A lot of people use Crown Vic wheels on Studes, and the Town Car is basically the same platform, right? Will they fit a Stude and look decent?

    Let me be clear, I don't need them.......and they are too far from North Carolina to ship. Just wondering if they might work and look decent on a Stude.
    Paul
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    Quote Originally Posted by gordr View Post
    I just got offered what looks like a screaming deal on one. Body sound, interior clean, shows a little wear, good rubber. Apparently needs a crank position sensor to make it run. This is a 4.6 liter OHC V8. I don't know diddly squat about them. Looks like it would make a darn fine driver if the engine could be made to run.

    Anyone here got some knowledge?
    Sorry that it worked out like that. Anyone that has bought and sold a lot of cars comes out on the short end of the stick sometimes. I know that this does not make it any better.

    Who stated that it only needs a crank position sensor? You may have recourse there and be able to get the deal reversed.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
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    Well, I bought it as a non-runner. It may well have thrown a code for that, too. I will tell the seller what I found; if he wants to adjust the deal, fine. If not, well, it's caveat emptor. Poking around the PHX Craigslist, it looks like parting it out might come close to breaking me even.

    Paul, the wheels spoked aluminum, many thin spokes, with good tires. Should try them on the Lark, which is parked right behind the Lincoln, right now.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    I would load your Suburban with all the rust-free body panels and haul them back to Alberta. List them on Kijiji as there would be a better market for them here. https://www.kijiji.ca/b-alberta/1995...0l9003?dc=true

    Craig

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    I may be wrong, but the subframe that the front suspension is mounted to should be the same as a Crown Vic and those are popular with the truck modifiers as they bolt straight on F series trucks from the 60's on up with only a few brackets added to the F series frame.

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    President Member WinM1895's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spokejr View Post
    I may be wrong, but the subframe that the front suspension is mounted to should be the same as a Crown Vic and those are popular with the truck modifiers as they bolt straight on F series trucks from the 60's on up with only a few brackets added to the F series frame.
    Panther platform: 1979/82 LTD (name changed in 1983 to Crown Victoria); 1979/2010 Mercury Grand Marquis; 1980/2011 Lincoln Town Car; 1983/2012 Crown Victoria.

    1979/2002's have worm and roller P/S; 2003/12's have rack & pinion P/S

    The last years of the Crown Vic's were sold as fleet vehicles, cop cars and taxi-cabs.

    The front suspension/steering is a popular swap for 1961 and later F Series (F100/350) trucks.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by gordr View Post
    Well, I wound up getting this car, and it was a mistake for sure. The engine is kaput. Left bank, 1,2,3,4, 40, 75, 65, 45 psi compression. Right bank, 5,6,7,8, 0,0,0, 10 psi. Pulled off the RH cam cover, timing mark on cam appears to be where it is supposed to be when the crank is at TDC mark. Hooked air compressor to right bank cylinders: 5,6,8 have air blowing past intake valve; #7 has huge leak into crankcase, so hole in piston. I did rotate the engine to ensure the valves were both closed on each cylinder under leakdown check.

    I don't think it's worth my while to put an engine in it, unless I can get an engine for almost nothing. I will probably part it out. Anybody need anything?
    My girlfriend had a 98 Explorer 4.0 liter V6 which is the same architecture as the 4.6L. V8 as I understand it She had a similar problem as what your are experiencing. It turns out that there are two timing chain tensioners one on each cylinder bank. One at the front of the engine and one at the back. These have to be serviced at the specified interval otherwise they cause internal damage. In her case it just wasn't cost effective to have a mechanic pull the engine and do the repairs.It was a real shame because she always took very good care of the vehicle and we weren't aware of the tensioners needing servicing.

  26. #26
    President Member junior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8E45E View Post
    I would load your Suburban with all the rust-free body panels and haul them back to Alberta. List them on Kijiji as there would be a better market for them here. https://www.kijiji.ca/b-alberta/1995...0l9003?dc=true

    Craig
    Hey Gord, Craig may be onto something, but hell bring the whole car up to Alberta. The modern-day lowrider kids like those towncars, and if it's rust free and has a good interior they may eat it up for a price where you can make a profit...maybe even find a Donk builder as they like those big body on frame cars too, although I'm not sure what the Donk following is in AB. cheers, junior

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  27. #27
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    I don't know if the car is importable to Canada, but I expect it is, since more than 15 years old. But it would have to come up on a future trip, since my trailer is at home. The wheels on this car are the same as depicted near the bottom of the Kijiji page on your link. I think I will put it up on Craigslist here, and see what happens. I don't want to waste too much time here parting it out.

    It occurs to me that the multiport injection on this engine might be transplantable to a Studebaker block. The heads are made with their port faces perfectly horizontal, and the aluminum manifold just plops down on top of them. A pair of wedge-shaped adaptors could be made to bolt to Stude V8 heads to mimic that setup. Provided that the relative dimensions permit. I won't let this car go to the scrapper without having picked its bones clean for what I might want, if parts sales prove hopeless.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

  28. #28
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    It is on the wrong side of the country for you, but I just noticed an interesting current auction. It is the Sachem auction under www.AARauction.com
    It includes two lots, each lot consisting of a rebuilt Ford 4.6 litre V8. They are both long blocks still sealed in their "crates"/boxes. One is a '92-'94 and the other is a '95.
    The current bid on each is $70.
    Gary L.
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    SDC member since 1968
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  29. #29
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    Here it is:
    https://phoenix.craigslist.org/evl/p...495369830.html

    Don't know if this would work but it is also on Craigslist

    https://phoenix.craigslist.org/wvl/p...408744158.html

    Bob Miles
    Tucson AZ

  30. #30
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    Yeah, that first ad is me. I have had a grand total of 2 calls so far.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by gordr View Post
    Yeah, that first ad is me. I have had a grand total of 2 calls so far.
    You only need one - the right one. Good luck!
    Perhaps if it was listed as a complete titled car only needing an engine, rather than a car for parts, you might do better.
    Last edited by studegary; 02-15-2018 at 01:17 PM. Reason: grammatical
    Gary L.
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  32. #32
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    That's a good thought, Gary. I could easily run another ad under "cars for sale by owner". Just change up the text a little. If somebody were sitting on a good 4.6 engine, this car could be a good fit.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

  33. #33
    Golden Hawk Member
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    The 4.6 litre "crate" engines that I mentioned in post 28 sold. The rebuilt '92-'94 sold for $850 and the rebuilt '95 sold for $750. There was also a core 4.6 engine that sold for $25.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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