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Ford Crown Victoria and Mercury Grand Marquis



  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    I was unaware GM went so far in fixing the problem, but it's good they're doing it. Ford has tried at least twice to redesign the plastic manifold, this last time by replacing the section that failed 99.9% of the time with an aluminum tube. It remains to be seen whether this will make the new manifolds as reliable as the '95 and earlier, or if some section of the manifold only marginally stronger will start rupturing. All I know is when manifolds were made of metal, it was almost unheard of for one to fail of its own volition. That one should expect an imminent intake failure on post-'95 model year cars says Ford needs to follow GM's example. It's time for the plastic manifold designers to admit defeat, draw up plans for a metal manifold, and move on.
  • dbc123dbc123 Posts: 105
    Several engines have used resin intake manifolds successfully (Jaguar AJ V8 and Chrysler 4.7 OHC V8 come immediately to mind). Ford's problem stems from the fact that a coolant crossover pipe is intergrated into the manifold. The other mentioned engines do not have coolant flowing thru the intake manifold and they've had no problems. Fords latest (aluminum crossover) versions seem to have cured the problem. They are used on all 02 forward CV/TC/GM,s. Ford has lost a lot of consumer confidence on this issue. What is particularly gauling is the fact that these things have been failing since late 96 and it took them 6 years to come up with a solution; all the while building more engines that were destined to strand their owners.
  • melmomelmo Posts: 11
    I have a 2000 GM/HPP. I have engine braking (seems like all the time). And, no I'm not driving with the OD locked out. I also have lousy gas mileage even with an egg between me and the accelerator! Question, Does the transmission on this car really allow the car to coast i.e., same as running in neutral. If not why not? Who needs engine braking? Any kind of braking reduces gas mileage. As someone pointed out earlier brake repair is less expensive than transmission fixes. So OK, if I'm stuck with the factory set up re. this tyranny, is it possible to get a chip that would at least reduce the speed at which the gears are told to change???
  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    Torque convertors have what is called a lockup speed. Below a certain RPM, the Torque converter does not engage, and it is like sitting on the clutch on a manual. Once you hit that RPM, your TC engages, and your car moves.
    That being said, what, exactly are we calling bad gas mileage? Remember it's a big, heavy, unaerodynamic V-8 powered barge. If you've bought this car after having gotten used to something like a Corolla, there will be a big drop in gas mileage. Finally, are you sure it's engine braking? When my car felt like it was braking all the time, it wasn't the engine doing it, it was a seized calpier on the front of the car.
    As far as engine braking goes, there's always going to be a little bit of it under any condition. Where it really comes in handy though, is coming down mountains. My physics teacher told me energy cannot be created or destroyed, only converted to one form or another. Your brakes don't magically make all your car's kinetic energy into nothing, they convert it to heat through friction. Your brake disks are, in effect, heat sinks that absorb all that heat and radiate it off into the air. The problem is that when they absorb too much heat, they have trouble absorbing much more, and all that kenetic energy has just lost its escape path, your brakes "fade" and your car doesn't stop until the rotors cool down. By downshifting the engine, the engine revs to a higher speed, and all of the moving parts create friction dragging the engine speed, and with it the car's speed, back down. Thus the engine and the radiator absorb a lot of heat that would otherwise go into the brakes, keeping your brakes cooler longer, delaying the onset of brake fade.
  • melmomelmo Posts: 11
    Thanks for the reply. Poor gas mileage defined as 15/19, and I don't horse my car. Is something sticking? I doubt it. Example: At the top of a specific grade, I'm doing 40 mph, in top gear, no-touch on the accelerator while going down the hill. Speed at bottom 45 mph. Now, duplicating that experiment except placing the transmission in neutral at the top of that same grade yields a speed at the bottom of 55 mph. That's a increase of 22%. Now, I don't know if the increase is linear relative to mpg, but I'm sure the speed reduction is costing me money. And, I believe gasoline will not be getting any less expensive any time soon. Re. braking, coming down hills etc. There is always the gear selecter on the column.

    Ps. My '93 town car showed hardly any change in speed duplicating the above.
  • The 4r70w does not coast like having the car in neutral. Neither does any other mainstream automatic transmission that I know of. When the torque convertor is locked up, you will notice considerably more engine braking than if the convertor is unlocked, but if the car is in gear and decelerating, there is always some.

    The reason you notice the engine braking more on the HPP GM than on your Town Car is because you have a different rear end ratio in the HPP. Your TC is probably a 2.73, while HPP's get 3.27's. This means your engine will turn a bit faster at a given speed in the same gear than in the TC.

    The deeper gears are much better for acceleration, but they do cost a little on gas mileage. However, you bought a Grand Marquis; you shouldn't expect it to get 30 mpg.
  • A dealer near me has several 2003 Crown Vic LX sports on "sale" for $24,500, not including ttl. Good deal? The rapid depriciation of CVs make me hesitant. Also, I've seen some Merc Marauders with a few thousand miles on them advertised for $25-26k. The 300 hp would be nice. The new MMs I see at $29-33k seem to just sit on the lot. Ford's fetish for high sticker prices, big "rebates" and dealer mark downs just doesn't inspire confidence.
  • peeetepeeete Posts: 136
    where are these sports located? It looks like they are selling at invoive or below before the rebate, whcih is about the best I have found. Its true they depreciate like stones, but the dealer isnt going to cover that for you unfortunately. I feel the same way as you however. I may just wait and order an 04 once the rebate kicks in. Its only $500 now, way too low. They need to clear away old stock first.
  • melmomelmo Posts: 11
    Just as a quick background, I've been driving for over 55 years. Cars, trucks (inc. 10 ton tractor with a 40' lowboy behind, and D-8 Cat). Now, that doesn't say this makes one wise but there is something to be said for experience. Many of the cars I've driven had a standard transmission. I do not recall ever down shifting any of these cars in order to get them stopped. The only exception was my 100-6 Austin Healey, because it was "cool" to do that. Now it seems the automatic transmission designers think otherwise i.e., they design their products to downshift for you "automatically" and there is nothing you can do about it short of manually shifting to neutral every time you release the gas. Engine breaking costs gasoline. If for no other reason than to recover the speed lost from the downshift. Why? Are these people in league with the refiners? Do they own stock in Exxon/Mobile? I believe this is simply a holdover from the '80s who-cares-about gas-prices thinking. It would seem to me thatwith $2.00/gal gas that ain't going south any time soon, it's about time for that to change. Bring back the automatics that stayed in overdrive e.g., neutral, until overridden by either acceleration or the full stop. You want engine braking move the gear selector. I want mpg. I use the break pedal to stop.
  • cfocfocfocfo Posts: 147
    What's the verdict on the best Car Wax to use ?

    Looking for something effective, but easy and affordable to get, ie Walmart.

    (Since I keep my cars 10 years, but only wax them the first 2 years, I haven't a clue which wax is good these days)
  • dbc123dbc123 Posts: 105
    All automatic transmissions downshift as speed is reduced. Few soon enough to provide noticable engine braking. The Ford 4R70w and AOD-E used in these cars generally shifts 4-3 at 32-38 mph with closed throttle. They stay in "overdrive" as long as possible to improve EPA economy numbers. Overdrive is not "neutral".
  • cfocfocfocfo Posts: 147
    Well, in the hour since my post above, I have found and been reading Waxing "info" on Edmunds. Kudos to Edmunds again !

    Apparently my gap in waxing knowledge is more considerable than imagined. Found out I now need to:

    Wash with Dawn
    Clay ...... Huh ?

    Repeat process in 3 weeks

    Product Choices - way TOO many !

    Here is one link ......
    jcmoya "Store Bought Waxes Part II (No Zaino Posts)" Feb 23, 2000 12:26am
  • melmomelmo Posts: 11
    My point remains. Engine braking, who needs it?
  • Truckers are really the only ones who still NEED engine braking. Now that almost all new cars have adequate brakes, use of the engine to slow the car isn't often needed. However, engine braking is a characteristic of the spark-ignition engine, so unless you completely de-couple the engine from the drivetrain when coasting, you are going to have some.

    You can do this by putting the transmission in neutral when coasting, but unless you feel like spending large money on a tranny rebuild, I would not recommend it, since the transmission needs to be in gear to have full lubrication.

    If you are that concerned about mileage, why did you by a full-size car, especially with HPP?!
  • Not to mention that in almost every state coasting in neutral is illegal. How the heck they would ever catch you has always been one of my favorite riddles!
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Any difference between '03 and '04 models?

    The only thing I see at my dealer. they replaced the yellow rear signal to red colored. No idea why. In my opinion, the yellow signals are more visible, and therefor safer on the road. No idea why Ford picked this change.

    Not a big deal, however.
  • So the 04's will be different than the 03's?

    I hate it when change is only for change's sake!
  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    Didn't they just make some major suspension, frame, and steering changes in '03? What more should they be doing to the '04's? It's not like the Crown Vic hasn't been given a major upgrade since 1979 (despite what detractors would have you beleive. Put my '82 up against an '04 and the differences become staggering).

    As far as the tail-lights go, I prefer the solid-red myself. I don't have any trouble seeing them during the day, and at night (I do a lot of night driving), the red turn signals are easier on the eyes than the amber. If it were up to me, all taillights would be of the solid red variety.
  • For Grand Marquis, essentially, it is the same car as the '03.5 (that is, no more separate digital clock, locking fuel door). There's now the option for coated safety glass for the windows, so that some idiot cannot take a crowbar to break into your car by shattering the windows. I was surprised that the '04 GM Ultimates are being offered with handling package. Unfortunately, there will be no longer a place to put your sunglasses, half the overhead console has been eliminated from all GM's, that middle dome light is also gone, ?maybe to accomodate moonroof option.
  • 03 Marked the year of a small cosmetic re-design and some under carriage changes,such as rack and pinion steering and a different process to make the frame in Dearborn.

    04 is virtually the same car,now with some different colour choices.
    In 05 will still be the same visually with some changes that you cannot see with the finished car will have 108 metres less wire in it,as well as different styled seatbelts.

    Cheers guys!

  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    Do you work at the Ontario plant that produces the CV/GM?

    I hope that by 2006, the 4.6L V8 in the CV/GM will get the 3 valve per cylinder design of the 5.4L used in the F-150. I think that Automotive News said that the CV/GM may get a modest styling update for 2006 also.
  • If you bust the dealer's chops really hard, you should be able to get one of those '03 LX Sports for about $22.5k with rebates. Go there the last day of October and they'll jump through hoops and bark like dogs to sell one to you. <g> I got mine the last day of July for a net of $23.5k.

    My dealer got a new '04 LX Sport in and I was looking at it while picking up my '03 from service.

    I see that the heated outside rearview mirrors are no longer standard, but are instead optional. On the Sports, at least, they've gone to a body-colored "B" pillar between the front and rear doors. The silver monochrome one I looked at was beautiful.

    I didn't notice the change in taillights, but have heard the same elsewhere. The all-red taillamps have been standard on the Police Interceptor model since that taillamp design was introduced. I don't know which I actually prefer.

    I love my 2003 LX Sport. I'm only averaging about 17.5 MPG per tankful presently (@2k miles), but I take the blame for that. It's too much fun... :)

  • vidtechvidtech Posts: 212
    my 97 grand marquis transmission is beginning to shudder slightly between gears 3 and 4.the car has 70k miles.i have heard from previous posts that changing ALL of the transmission fluid and replacing it with MERCON-V may solve this problem.i have also heard that MERCON-V may cause the clutch packs to fall apart.I would appreciate any comments or suggestions.
  • I just read the posts above re. overdrive. I recall owning a 1958 Ford with a straight 6 and manuel shift on the tree. In order to get into o/d range you had to let up on the gas pedal briefly after the car was moving above 32 mph. You could hear a click in the transmission when it shifted into o/d This was a free-wheeling gear and it felt like you were in neutral when it coasted.

     Anyone else remember this set -up? I know that I got over 30 mpg and it was a full size car.

     Geo K
  • evolkevolk Posts: 9
    In changing out my halogen bulbs yesterday, I noticed I have not just condensation, but standing water in the lenses. Are they double-payned? How do I remove?

    Its a 97 Crown Vic.

  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    is not so safe. You can't see it from a distance too far. But Ford decided to change all their cars to red turn signal lamps. and so they did to the re-designed Freestar. The rear turn signal light at night is almost invisible (same as Chryslers minivans). The old Windstar was very good, it was visible from at least 1/2 mile away! Also Toyota decided to change from yellow to red on the new Sienna, but Honda's Odyssey was changed from red to yellow. If you want to go with the red lamps, copy the... Cadillac DeVille. They're great!

    Interesting is that the front lamps always stays yellow. You'll not find a car with a red turn signal lamp in front - why?
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Because Federal Law in the United States forbids red lights on the fronts of vehicles other than emergency vehicles. That's why!
  • dmersdmers Posts: 23

    We had the same problem on our 94 Merc GM, that is, condensation on the inside of the front headlight lense. Our Ford/Merc dealer drilled a small hole at the bottom of each lense housing to allow moisture to drain out and dry out. The air tight condition inside the housing would not let moisture escape. I don't know if this is the correct way to fix it, but it was low cost and worked trouble free for 5-6 years before we traded it in for our 2000 GM.

    Good Luck.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    That seems like the best overall solution, but you wonder how it is all that water gets in there.....
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