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Lincoln Town Car Maintenance & Repair



  • The service department informed that if any sealed parts are opened and no defects found I would be charged labor for the work even though I have an extended warranty. I expect to have a resolution of this whole situation within the next week and will be sharing the details when it is finally resolved. I again wish to thank all the people who have shared their interest, care and concerns to help me resolve this matter. Ford is willing to send me to another dealership to do a second opinion but it involves over one hundred miles of driving and so I am not eager to do this in that it might well mean I would have to travel that distance every time an issue came up. Tranny appears to be shifting fairly smoothly and may ask about torque converter as a last resort, thank you for making the suggestion.
  • My Town Car was lifted today to change the oil without turning off the Air Suspension in the trunk. My car is now sitting down in the back. I drove it for a while hoping the air suspension bags in the rear would re inflate but nothing yet. Any ideas.

  • do you have the "check air suspension" light on the dash?? If not,try turning it off and on a few times and see if it fills up.Otherwise it may be replacement time...
  • No light on in the dash. Let me try turning it off nd on a few times.

  • Thanks 99towncarexec,

    turning the switch on and off worked. It has refilled and the suspension is working fine.

  • Glad to hear it.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,305
    Good to know in case a 4 year old grandson flips the switch while playing in the trunk. ;)
  • Wanted to update the forum on the Jittery ride in the 2004 Lincoln Town Car. We have reached a point where the problem is unresovlable in that the dealership vehamently states that the ride is normal for this model and year. I have no air tight method that to challenge that finding. When I make a final disposition I will report it here in that I appreciated all the information I received from the members of this forum. Just wanted the members to know how much I appreciated the advice and assistance received so far and most importantly can say the ride and suspension on the 05 was substantially more smooth and desirable.
  • After trying to resolve ride quality issue in this most attractive car I have ever owned I sold it back to the dealership.
    Appearance is not everything and the failure to absorb bumps as the 05 Signature Limited did was an insurmountable issue. I had some options such as taking the car to another Ford service department or replacing shocks myself. I had an extended service contract on this vehicle, I was told that if items such as the transmission or other sealed parts of the car were opened and no problems found I would have to pay the labor for the work.
    What I did learn from this experience was that buying a car after a 30 minute test drive is a very bad idea. I had been lucky in that I did that with the 05 and owned it for six years with no problems of any kind. The biggest obstacle was that the dealership said that the ride quality was within the normal range for this vehicle. Prudence is always wise when buying any vehicle, I would welcome any comments that could help me be a more prudent buyer in the future. I am now waiting for a refund on the extend service warranty less the short time and cancellation fee.

    I wish to thank all those members of this forum that offered their assistance in trying to resolve this problem. Still think Lincoln Town Car is a great vehicle and think Ford made a mistake in discontinuing the model.
  • I'd go buy another town car. 30 minute test drive??That's one patient dealer!!Usually,10 minutes tops,rarely and I mean rarely, longer then 20.If there was any issue it would have popped up on that long of a drive.Now as for ride, if it wasn't the air suspension that went bad then perhaps it was just the way that car rides.Even with the air ride shot,LINCOLNS still ride well although they will bounce over a bump like the bobble heads people used to put in their cars.In the future,turn the air ride on and off a couple of times to see that it's working right and make sure the "check air suspension" light comes on too. Really no idea why the ride appeared bad in the town car with no warnings or anything.Good luck!
  • Thank you for your reply. I agree with most of what you say. The comparison was the 05 ride quality versus the 04. Agree that the ride quality was probably within the limits of normal on the 04 but the drive train was clearly not in as good shape as the 05 even though the 05 had ten thousand miles more on it. The dealership did agree to allow overnight use if I find another car that I like. I live in a small town and they have known me for many years so not that surprising that they would allow overnight usage before deciding. Ford has revived improved and brought back model names in the past and hope Town Car will be one of them, don't think it will be any time soon but still hoping. Thanks again for your interest and reply.
  • I used to be in the Limo Business in NYC thru the 80's and 90's using Town Cars and Grand Marquis'. Since then I've had a 91,94,99,2002,2005 and 2 2007's,one of which I still have.Leaks were an issue on a few of them and in the 91 ( I knew of the engine issues with that 1st year 4.6 but it was ok while I had it) it's air ride went shortly after I gave it to a kid around here.The 05 had a noisy sunroof issue.That was the only suspension problem in all the lincolns.They are all over the place out here and the nice thing is it doesn't matter if it's a 95 or 05,the ride quality is excellent anyway!I actually like that 90's style a little better then the current version but I like some features in the newer ones that the oder ones don't have.A classy car no matter what year!Good luck and hop you find another one out there!CARS.COM and AUTOTRADER have many,many Lincolns.
  • I just sold my 99 Town car with 140,000 miles. It was my first Town Car which had 99,000 on it when I bought it. I loved it and its great ride. The only reason I sold it was to get a newer one with lower mileage and possibly take advantage of a better resale value. I found an 03 with 64,000 actual miles that I bought from a 90 year old widow whose husband had just died 6 weeks earlier. She did not have a drivers license so couldn't use the car. I only did a short test ride (10 minutes) and did not get to a freeway. Car looked and felt like a new car. Bought the car and then felt this car did not have the ride quality of my 99. I stopped at a dealer to get there opinion as to whether something was changed in ride design between the 99 and the 03. He told me the only thing he could think of was the 03 has 17 inch tires to the 99s 16 inch. I'm not sure this is it, but I know I'm feeling bumps more and also some roughness coming through from the road itself or the drive train that I didn't feel from the 99. I'm wondering if the tires themselve's could be the problem. They only have around 6000 miles on them and are "Good Year Weatherhandler ES". I'm also wondering if it could be a difference in air pressure in the air bags of the 2 cars. I did have a bad rear shock that I found right after I bought the car. Installed new rear shocks which helped take care of that problem. Thanks
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,305
    Our 94 Sig has an underhood light, automatic trunk pull down, cornering lights, & the parking brake releases when you put in Drive. These are not even available on the 11 MKS so we are learning to do without. :D
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    High humidity will drastically "warm up" your cool air produced by the A/C, as much as 20 or degrees. On an aging system, what you experience isn't all that unusual. Best remedy would be to switch to recirculate to block out the wet outside air. Should help a lot.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Jittery ride sounds like the tires to me, and if the inflation doesn't seem to make a difference, the actual tires may. Some discount brands, particularly those made in China are not at all ride or road noise engineered, and can mess up the ride on luxury cars noticeably. Now, maybe you have Michelins on the car, in which case, I'm all wet. But it's worth a shot. If the tires are cheap ones, you may consider upgrading. May help a lot.
  • Howdy!

    The dealer was seriously uninformed. The entire panther front end was completely redesigned in 03.

    The standard 'recirculating ball steering, suspension being bolted to the frame with a stamped metal crossmember supporting the engine' (like your 99) was put to pasture.

    In its' place, a marvel really: a big cast aluminum rail runs from one front tire to the other, with the engine sitting on it, the control arms (upper forged, lower aluminum!) are bolted to this rail. The shock and spring setup was changed to a coilover unit (looks like a strut, but there's still an upper control arm/ball joint), and the old recirculating ball was changed to rack and pinion steering.

    Handles better, and it's a much more planted car (it's hardly the same car!), but much stiffer overall as you noticed. It is radically different. Some prefer it - I prefer the old front end.

    Just one example - this is similar to the lower control arm on the 99 -

    And this is the control arm on your 03.

    This is the new front end:

  • 99towncarexec99towncarexec Posts: 160
    edited October 2012
    Bart,thanks for the wealth of knoweledge man!I didn't know about those changes.I'm an old ex NYC limo driver from the 80's and 90's and I expect to be driving my couch when I get in a Lincoln!As well as expecting it to handle like the Titanic in rough seas.I love the old swaing front end but this newer handling stuff isn't to bad either.My 07 is slightly more responsive then my other ones were.Another thing I miss more is the old seats they had in the 90's versions.Much more comfortable then these new ones.
  • Thanks Bart for the great response. I knew there had to be something different about this 03 from my 99. The feeling I get from the drivetrain in this 03 I never had in my 99. (maybe poor motor mount isolation or exhaust isolation) I'm with you, I prefer the old style for smoothness. Your right though, the 03 does seem like a better handling car.

  • You're welcome guys, it's nice to be able to tell some folks who haven't heard it from me 100 times :D

    I went from a 97 MGM to a 85 TC and then to a 03 MGM in the last couple years (I've owned many panthers). The 03 LOOKS like the 97, but the 97 is closer to the 85.

    And even though it's still being fixed up I'd usually rather take the 85. Not to slam the 03 though, it's a great car, and I prefer it in bad weather. I can see why some would rather have the 03. Different strokes etc.

    Agreed on the engine feel/noise. Maybe the one piece front end has something to do with it. And for some reason the 03 has a lot of valvetrain noise too, more than the 97, and I already fixed the tensioner issue.

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