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Lincoln Town Car

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About Lincoln Town Car

The Lincoln Town Car was one of the most established automotive nameplates in America. Since it debuted as a trim level for the 1969-'71 Continental, the Town Car's purpose remained the same: to spoil as many as six occupants with spacious and luxurious accommodations no matter where in the car they were sitting. For years it was the epitome of what Americans expected from a luxury car.

As time passed by, those expectations began to change, and the Town Car did not evolve to meet them. Not only did Lincoln maintain the Town Car's palatial dimensions, massive trunk and soft ride, it also maintained the basic platform that had underpinned the car since the late 1970s. Its solid rear axle suspension and V8 engine, in particular, were relics of another time. Many of the latest safety, convenience and entertainment features were also not available.

Some will certainly view a used Town Car as a comfortable choice for luxury transportation. But for the most part, we think most shoppers will do better choosing another large luxury sedan that's more capable and advanced.

Most Recent Lincoln Town Car
The most recent Lincoln Town Car was produced from 2003-'11. Compared to the model that immediately preceded it, this final Town Car featured a strengthened frame, updated mechanicals, minor styling changes and a revised interior. But it still was heavily based on the previous car, with a body-on-frame chassis, rear-wheel drive and a solid rear axle.

Equipped with wide front and rear bench seats, the Lincoln Town Car was one of the few six-passenger cars around. Both standard- and long-wheelbase models were offered, each powered by a 4.6-liter V8 engine that produced 239 horsepower and 287 pound-feet of torque. Not only was acceleration pokey, but fuel economy was poor as well. Not helping matters was an old four-speed automatic that lacked the choice of gear ratios and fuel economy of the five- and six-speed automatics found on competitive sedans.

Changes during its lengthy model run were largely restricted to a reshuffling and renaming of trim names in its first few years. For instance, the top-of-the-line model was first named Cartier, then Ultimate and finally Signature Limited. From 2006 through 2011, however, the Town Car could primarily be had in standard-wheelbase Signature Limited and long-wheelbase Signature L trim levels. Feature highlights included dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, power-adjustable pedals, a premium sound system, a power-operated trunk and driver memory settings. The Town Car Signature L was essentially a limousine. Six inches longer than the standard car, the L featured a much roomier rear bench seat with separate audio and climate controls.

In editorial reviews, we appreciated the Town Car's abundant storage areas, soft ride quality, interior spaciousness and ability to swallow four sets of golf clubs in the huge trunk. And compared to the previous generation, it did benefit from a stronger frame, sharpened steering and upgraded brakes. But compared to other large luxury sedans of the time, the Town Car was let down by a weak engine, soggy handling, a dated interior design and a lack of modern features.

Previous Lincoln Town Car Models
The Lincoln Town Car produced from 1998-2002 lacked the more recent model's updates, but still offered the same roomy interior. It was offered in Executive, Signature and Cartier editions, and beginning in 2002, the latter two trim levels were available in long-wheelbase form. Between 1998 and 2000, the Town Car was powered by a 4.6-liter V8 that produced 205 hp. In 2001, hp was bumped up to 220 for Executive and Signature editions, while Cartier versions produced 235 hp.

Between 1990 and 1997, the Town Car was boxy, slab-sided and formal. However, its radiused edges, flush-mounted windows and lighting elements made it appear infinitely more modern and aerodynamic than the carriage-like pre-1990 models. In 1991, an overhead-cam 4.6-liter V8 was installed that, with 190 hp, was significantly more powerful than the 5.0-liter V8 in previous Town Cars. In 1994, hp rose once again to 210. Other notable developments for mid-1990s Town Car models included an optional Handling Package with firmer suspension and matched tires introduced for 1993, and a subtle but tasteful interior and exterior restyle for 1995.

Most editorial reviewers of the time noted the Town Car's strength as a serene reading room on wheels while lamenting its ponderous driving dynamics. However, there was universal acknowledgement that the Lincoln Town Car never has been for spirited drivers, but rather for those who grew up believing that big, comfortable, rear-wheel-drive American luxury cars were the ultimate reward for a job well done. And for them, this Town Car was a perfect fit.

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2015 Ford F-150 named Truck of Texas, Lincoln and Jeep also awarded at Truck Rodeo

Tue, 14 Oct 2014 09:28:00 EST

The Ford Motor Company has a lot of reasons to celebrate after winning eight categories in this year's Texas Auto Writers Association's annual Truck Rodeo. Most important among them, the Blue Oval's latest 2015 Ford F-150 earned the prestigious Truck of Texas award, ending the Ram 1500's two-year winning streak. The 2015 Lincoln MKC also grabbed the honor as the CUV of Texas, and Ford was named Truck Line of Texas.
FoMoCo even took trophies for best technology with its extensive use of aluminum on its latest F-Series and best commercial vehicle for the new Transit 250. It wasn't a total sweep, though, because the Jeep Grand Cherokee grabbed the title of the SUV of Texas for the fifth straight time.
This year's event put 60 auto writers in 75 pickups, SUVs and crossovers and challenged them to find the best in a plethora of categories. All of the winners are listed below, and scroll down to read the full announcements from the Texas Auto Writers Association and Ford.

Why Lincoln says it's loving Ellen and Conan MKC ad spoofs [w/videos]

Mon, 13 Oct 2014 14:14:00 EST

You would think that commercial being ridiculed across the Internet would be an advertising executive's worst nightmare, but that's not necessarily the case. At least not when it comes to Lincoln and its latest campaign to promote the new MKC.
The campaign features Matthew McConaughey channeling his characters from True Detective and The Lincoln Lawyer, and was quickly spoofed by both Conan O'Brien and Ellen DeGeneres. But instead of shaking their heads in dismay at the comedy talk-show hosts' take on their ad, Lincoln and its advertising firm Hudson Rouge welcome the free publicity.
"We're flattered. Just to get out into the public mind with parodies says you've achieved a certain amount of notoriety," Hudson Rouge CCO Jon Pearce told Automotive News. "It's hard to put a dollar amount on earned media. We couldn't ask for better."

Is Lincoln MKC cutting into Cadillac SRX sales?

Tue, 07 Oct 2014 15:44:00 EST

The two big American luxury brands of Cadillac and Lincoln are on surprisingly similar paths at the moment with both divisions hoping to redefine themselves and grow popularity. They're still early in the process with no clear winner yet, but things might actually be looking up for Lincoln's latest model, according to a monthly sales analysis from The Motley Fool. It seems, at least early on, that the new MKC crossover might be taking a bite out of the Cadillac SRX's growth.
The MKC launched just a few months ago and has been getting a big marketing push from a series of oft-mocked ads starring the smooth-talking Matthew McConaughey. The luxury CUV has been the popular, new kid on the block with growing sales since its introduction. While smaller than the SRX, the Lincoln starts at a lower price and offers better fuel economy.
Through June, the SRX performed well with sales up over 20 percent on average through June, according to The Motley Fool. However, July and August saw things plummet with year-over-year drops of 7 percent and 37 percent, respectively. It still far outsold the MKC in terms of actual units in a given month, but the Caddy's continued growth has appeared to stagnate.

NHTSA will investigate some Ford Fusion, Lincoln MKZ models for power steering issue

Tue, 07 Oct 2014 09:30:00 EST

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is opening an investigation into the 2010-2012 Ford Fusion, Fusion Hybrid and Lincoln MKZ, the 2012 MKZ Hybrid and 2011 Mercury Milan because the agency has hundreds of complaints of electric power steering failure in these models.
According to NHTSA's data, it has received 508 complaints of the power steering allegedly suddenly malfunctioning and resulting in increased effort to turn the wheel. In four incidents, these failures resulted in loss of control and crashes. According to the reports, in some cases a power steering warning message came on as the fault occurred, and other times the system restored itself by turning off and then restarting the vehicle. NHTSA said it has also received further field report data from Ford, but that information hasn't been publicly released yet.
For the moment, there isn't a recall for this failure on these models. NHTSA is just investigating them to "assess the scope, frequency and safety consequences of the alleged defect," and the agency says an estimated 938,000 vehicles could potentially be affected.

Ellen DeGeneres sends up Matthew McConaughey's Lincoln ad

Mon, 29 Sep 2014 12:43:00 EST

Lincoln had to have known that when it released its new ad campaign for the new MKC with Matthew McConaughey, it would open itself up to a bit of good old fashioned ridicule. The television commercial was, after all, good for a laugh or two. And true to their mission, talk show hosts haven't missed the opportunity to have a little fun at Lincoln's and McConaughey's expense.
Conan O'Brien was first to send up the television spot, but now Ellen DeGeneres has taken a stab at it too, superimposing herself in the back seat of the compact luxury crossover, downing some pot brownies and generally playing Costello to McConaughey's Abbott. It's worth a watch, if only to see Ellen getting down in her usual, offbeat style.

Ford recalling 850,000 cars and SUVs for airbag issues

Fri, 26 Sep 2014 11:01:00 EST

Ford has announced a major recall of 850,000 vehicles from model years 2013 and 2014 due to a problem with the "restraints control module."
According to Ford, a short circuit could develop in the module, causing the airbag warning light to illuminate. In more severe cases, dependent on where the short develops, the airbags and seatbelt pre-tensioners may not work in the event of an accident. The problems can be more wide-ranging than that, too, as systems that rely on information from the control module, such as the stability control can be affected.
With 850,000 vehicles affected, it's no surprise that some of Ford's volume leaders are covered. That includes the Fusion and Lincoln MKZ sedans, as well as the incredibly recall-prone Escape and the C-Max MPV.

2002 Lincoln Continental concept should've made production, headed for auction instead

Fri, 26 Sep 2014 09:30:00 EST

It seems like the retro design aesthetic in autos might be petering out, with even a former poster child like the Ford Mustang taking a step in a more modern direction. Sometimes those updates of old-school models really worked well, though. Just take a look above at the Lincoln Continental concept from 2002 that took the extruded shape of the 1960s version and updated it for the new millennium.
Now there's a chance for this gorgeous concept to take a spot in your garage, as RM Auctions is selling it as part of a 130-plus-car, no-reserve auction of the Sam Pack Collection on November 14 and 15, in Dallas, TX. Among the lots for sale are a number of Fords, including several recent concepts from the brand. "My collecting philosophy is simple: buy what I like, but always with an emphasis on quality," Pack said in the auction announcement.
The Continental concept absolutely nails the mix of modern and retro. Its perfectly crisp lines make the shape appear hewn from a single piece of metal, and there's just the slightest ornamentation with the angled, chrome slats in the grille and chrome strips over the wheel arches. It even retains the suicide doors from its inspiration.

Lincoln's first shipment of cars arrives in China

Mon, 15 Sep 2014 18:01:00 EST

It has been two years since Lincoln first announced its plans to expand into China, and the first models destined for sale in the giant automotive market just came off the boat in Shanghai on September 10. It's going to be a few weeks before Chinese buyers actually have the chance to get behind the wheel, though.
The first two models being offered to China are the MKZ and MKC, as seen arriving in these photos, and they are going to be sold at dealers that look more like hotels than traditional showrooms. The first four are opening in Beijing, Shanghai and Hangzhou in October, with a grand unveiling of the new brand to Chinese consumers later that month. By the end of the year, Lincoln wants to have eight dealers operating in seven cities. By 2016, the automaker wants to have a lineup of five models available in the People's Republic.
"This is the culmination of months of teamwork and collaboration both in North America and here in China," said Robert Parker, President of Lincoln China, in the company's release.

2015 Lincoln Navigator

Mon, 15 Sep 2014 11:57:00 EST

Typically, when I approach a new vehicle launch, it's with a degree of optimism. Nowadays, we just expect that every new vehicle will pose a legitimate challenge to segment leaders. Mid-cycle refreshes, meanwhile, have taken on a greater degree of importance, as customers' preferences for the freshest vehicles remains strong and automakers rush to keep the latest tech in their offerings.
Conversely, I admit to not being terribly optimistic hopping into the 2015 Lincoln Navigator. I was the first person from Autoblog to see the new model in the metal, way back in January ahead of its Chicago Auto Show debut, and my initial reaction was far from positive. But, as I'd been the one that initially tested the new Cadillac Escalade and had just finished a week in the long-wheelbase version of General Motors' most premium SUV, I was a natural candidate to head down to Louisville, KY - home of Navigator production - to sample the brand's latest.
Lincoln's attempt at freshening the old Navigator's bling-bling face is pretty typical of today's more thorough mid-cycle refreshes, with dramatically new front and rear clips. The addition of standard 20-inch wheels or optional 22s - in place of standard 18s and optional 20s - goes a long way towards modernizing the Navigator's staid exterior. The cabin, meanwhile, is home to finer leather, which covers most of the dash as well as the steering wheel and seats. Warm Ziricote wood would prove to be a particular highlight on the top-flight Reserve model that I drove (the only trim available for us to test).

Conan O'Brien takes McConaughey's Lincoln ad to its logical conclusion

Thu, 11 Sep 2014 14:58:00 EST

We all had to see this coming. Conan O'Brien has released a parody of Matthew McConaughey's new ads for the 2015 Lincoln MKC and remixed them with lines from one of his most critically acclaimed recent roles.
The now much darker commercial probably isn't how Lincoln would prefer the MKC to be marketed, but really in a few of the actual ads, McConaughey already seems moments away from breaking into a full Rustin Cohle from True Detective impression. The cadence and tone of his voice are just so close to that character, especially in the one where he's talking to the bull standing in the middle of the road. It very nearly verges on parody anyway; Conan is just turning all of this up to 11.
It's a little surprising that the writers didn't dig a little deeper into the McConaughey oeuvre for the parody. Maybe McConaughey could have taken the MKC for a party at the Moon Tower from Dazed and Confused. In any case, it's worth a quick watch, so check it out.