Lincoln Town Car Model Year Impressions
1990: Avoid. Has the old 302 engine and carryover tech from the boxbody style. No storage armrests in the Signature. Soft suspension still "floats" down the highway.
1991 - 1992 1/2: A good year in '91 but has the "bastard block" 4.6 which mates to the old style AOD transmission. Revised front suspension, firmer ride.
1992 mid-year and later: AVOID! The AODE transmission is a lemon and engine fires are a problem due to a defective wire harness. The car can catch fire just sitting in your driveway or garage! But the 1990 - 1992 Signature Series has the nicest seats of any 1990s Town Car IMO. Lots of interior details were "thrifted out" starting in 1993.
1993: This year has uglier woodgrain and cheaper seats. Same transmission and electrical problems as the 1992s. I would avoid these models.
1994: The only advantage to the 1994 is it's the only pre-1995 model with CFC-free air conditioning. Otherwise it is identical to the 1993. If you are determined to own one with the 1st generation interior, this is the year to get.
1995: The new organically styled "blobby" interior is ugly IMO and the seats are so-so, but lots of upgrades make this year a good choice. Steering wheel controls, in-dash compass, upgraded JBL sound system, and more advanced electronics such as the driver's door module and memory/heated seats. The new exterior looks really sharp. The engine/powertrain is improved and the new 4R70W transmission is a HUGE improvement over the AODE but all the kinks weren't worked out of it until 1998. But there is also bad news: The PCM is not fully OBDII compliant, so you can't use the new OBDII tools like a laptop or Palm Pilot to work on the engine. The ride is considerably firmer than earlier years but handling is also improved.
1996: The engine is fully OBDII-compliant in '96 and later models but this year got an awful plastic intake manifold which will need replacing. Many interior features and details were "thrifted out" of the car. There are some really nice designer colors for the interior though.
1997: Last year of this body style. Many remaining touches "thrifted out" of the car, the all-plastic molded door panels are even uglier. No lightbar in the rear except in special packages. no cargo net, etc. The steering is improved but not nearly as good as the 1998.
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