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Lincoln Town Car transmission

hi my name is michael i have a 1991 lincoln towncar with approx 150,000 miles on it. my problem is when you put the gear shifter in overdrive it will rev up to a high rpm and wont pull. but if you put it in drive it will shift to 3rd but no overdrive iam open for any help thanks michael


  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    What happens when you press in the button at the end of the directional lever? If that button is stuck or disconnected, it could be why Overdrive is not functioning.

    Check the transmission oil level & top off as needed.
  • this car does not have a button on the gear shifter. it has 1,d,and drive with a circle. in drive it will shift twice and when i put it in overdrive nothing it goes to high rpm and wont pull. ive check for a vacume hose on the transmission and it has none. ive changed the trans fluid and filter. i'm thinking that the overdrive is burned out
  • Hi, I'm Rick and I am having a problem with the shifting in my TC. When I take off, it shifts fine from 1st to 2nd, 2nd to 3rd feels delayed, like it may be slipping and then into OD is fine. Could this be solved by just a simple tranny service? I just bought it 2 months ago and have had a host of relatively minor problems to fix. The guy who had it before me was 90 and only had put 5000 miles on it since 2000, so I'm sure I'm going to have some problems due to not being driven enough. It was garage kept. This car just turned 100K.
  • I have a 99 Lincoln towncar,,,it is bumping between 30 and 50 mph...feels like a coil is bad..but no service engine light..could this be transmission ? or torque converter..
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    If "bumping" means "shuddering", it could be your transmission and converter need their oil changed - including the filter. If you're going to keep the car a long time switch to Mercon V, semi synthetic as it lasts a lot longer than the conventional tranny oil.
  • hi,,thx for the has 150,000 miles..just changed oil in tranny and fuel filter
  • tgd1tgd1 Posts: 5
    We have a 1991 TC with 120,000 miles. Former owner is our landlady who took very good care of this car.

    Yesterday I was driving on the hiway after a weekend of putting close to 400 miles on the car over the course of 3 days. While I was in traffic the check engine light came on and went off 3 times. After the traffic lightened up I was going about 40 mph and tried to excel but the car did not respond and I lost speed. I pulled to the side of the road and stopped the engine. Upon restarting the engine, it did drive and I continued on a lesser road for a while but when I came to a red light, I had to practically stand on the brake to get the car to slow down as the engine was racing like mad. I put the car in neutral and kept my foot on the brake but the engine continued to race. I don't know if this is important, but I did use Speed Control earlier in the day. We ended up calling a tow truck to get us home.

    This morning it was fine - although I only drive one mile to work and that is obviously not a good determinator as to whether the issue will pop up again.

    Someone suggested that it could be a hole in a hose.

    Anybody else have any experience or information on this type of problem?
    We checked the transmission fluid and it seemed fine. I am probably 2 months behind in having my oil and fluid changes which I will now do this weekend.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    At 120,000 miles, the Mass Air Sensor should have been either carefully cleaned or replaced. Inquire of the Landlady if she had it done.

    If coolant level is too low, the "check engine" light will come on, but that is only one of many possibilities.

    You lead in: "Re: tranny slipping ", but your verbiage didn't mention a slipping tranny so while inquiring of when the MAS was replaced ask about when the transmission oil was replaced.

    Some people sell a car when it needs considerable maintenance and some folk accomplish the needed maintenance so as to sell the car. ;)
  • tgd1tgd1 Posts: 5
    Thanks for the info. We are going to bring it to the mechanic tomorrow and I'll ask him to check the MAS as well as replacing all the fluids.
  • I had the same thing happen on my 1999 Town Car. It IS a real surprise when the Speed Control takes over and causes you to "Stand on The Brakes" in order to slow down!
    The cause for the "shutdown" and "speed-up" is a "protection mechanism" that is built into the engine (electronically) to prevet against overheating (in my case, because of a blown thermostat gasket) or low oil. This IS mentioned in the owner's manual which I FINALLY read! You know, it's like asking directions: Men don't do it, that is, until ALL ELSE fails!

    When someone told you it may be a bad hose, they were correct!

    After you fix the cause, you will enjoy many more miles from this fantastic vehicle!


  • tgd1tgd1 Posts: 5
    Thank you both so much for the feed back. We brought the car to the mechanic today and at first he was trying to tell us that we needed a new transmission but with the info we got here, we were able to give him "our" theory about what the problem might be and he said "oh yeah, you could be right" and he fixed the problem along with a few other cosmetic issues, did a fluid and filter change all for just over $100.

    Now - we are looking at a new sound system as ours doesn't work. Any advice on this?

    L & B
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    Re: Sound system..........

    Most common fault is a blown fuse which may have some other minor functions connected to it. Do you have any other minor outages such as lights someplace?
    If so, you may just need a new fuse in the box under the drivers side of the dash.
  • I own a 1988 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series Sedan with 156,000 miles
    on it for a long time since I had it from 2004 until now the car would drive
    pretty smooth but the overdrive would always shift or change hard
    now it is shiftting but only when u reach over 40 u can not rush it or try to pass
    some one because it will hestiate and then later change ,
    would a filter and fluid /strainer change suffice for this car or am I looking at a transmission over haul , the car is in such pristine condition I want it to drive like it did in 1988 and especially being that this march will mark its 20 yr old birthday

    open for the effective economical solution
    email me hglaw@ureach .com
    Daryl In NC Lincoln town car lover
  • rhtransrhtrans Posts: 84
    If you have a Rwd... most likely its time for an overhaul. Those units are deceptable to governor pressure loss through the valve body plugs and governor housing from normal wear and tear. They are notorious for firm o/d shifts due to the torque converter having a dampner in it that provides a form of lock up instead of an on/off clutch controlled by a computer like most vehcles, so it's locked when it shifts to 3rd which does does affect the 4th gear shift feel some especially it has alot of miles. But Anyway..there is a throttle valve cable that runs from the top of your engine to the transmission that affects shift time and feel. If it's out of adjustment...just a little to can cause late hesitating 4th gear shifts also. I'd definitely check that first especially if someone has been working on or around the top of the engine. It only takes a little bit to be out of adjustment. If you loosen it to much it can damage the transmission in time..k
  • thanks so much for your informative reply , I do have rear wheel drive with 58,897 miles showing , 5 . 0 liter V8 , I will definitely have the infromation you supplied to me when going to the repair shop once again thanks so much

  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    rhtrans knows what he is talking about.

    Due to only having 59,000 miles on the car...........

    My only suggestion is to suspect you have the original transmission oil in the tranny and suggest it and the filter be replaced as well as making other adjustments.
  • barenbaren Posts: 1
    I like to do my own repair. Recently I recieved a recall notice. Where can I find out what parts I need to change for fire prevention due to faughty cruise switch?
    When looking on Lincoln websites all I get is the run-around.Help! :mad:
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    Just had the cruise switch installed on our 94 Sig. Done by the dealer in 20 minutes and NO charge. Free!

    So, why do it yourself? :confuse:
  • maxx512maxx512 Posts: 3
    Car has about 142000 miles, owned 1 mo. pd. $200. Great car but on trip 150 miles from home the car decides not to shift above 2nd gear. Fluid is kinda burnt looking but no particles notes in fluid.
    Any luck of maybe a fluid and filter change would help? And maybe another something to look for or is an overhaul in order for it? Also what is the trans. name so I could look for a rebuild kit. I have done rebuilds in past on C-4 and C-6 but many years back and my son is wanting to get his hands dirty and cut!! So this might be an opportunity for him to learn a little auto mech.
    Thanks for any help from a very informative forum!!
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