Pick of the Day: 1996 Lincoln Town Car for fleet work or personal luxury

Credit: Original article published by Classic Cars Journal.

Executive transportation is big business.  Special events, celebrity appearances, corporate travel and airport shuttles are a few of the duties for which Lincoln Town Cars have been called upon for decades. 

And for good reason. The Town Car’s robust 4.6-liter V8 was a proven powerplant, known to crest several hundred-thousand miles with routine maintenance.  After all, that same engine powered every Ford Crown Victoria from 1992 through 1997 in police fleets across the nation. 

The Pick of the Day is a low-mileage 1996 Lincoln Town Car Cartier Edition listed by a private seller in Lake Elsinore, California, on ClassicCars.com.  Finished in Pearl White over ivory leather, the car has accumulated only 82,000 miles over its nearly 25-year lifespan. 

Clearly, this car wasn’t used for fleet service, and the cosmetic condition suggests that it has been enthusiast-owned its entire life.

“I’m a collector of these Town Cars,” the seller’s ad states.  “My Cartier Town Car is in very good condition and everything works.” 

town car

Originality has been preserved, right down to the original radio head unit.  The windows, heater and air conditioning are functional, the seller says, and the car has new tires with good brakes. 

The digital gauge cluster with integrated compass, dual trip meters and fuel economy information was advanced for its time.  For 1996, the car was fitted with redesigned climate controls, and Cartier Editions such as this one had genuine wood trim on the dashboard and the door panels. 

The Town Car name came into existence initially as a trim level for the Continental, dating back to 1959.  But for the 1981 model year, the name took on its own role as the brand’s full-size luxury sedan.  Its second generation launched nine years later. 

The car’s $42,000 MSRP was a hefty price tag at the time.  For many Town Car buyers, that investment was offset by the car’s usability in corporate transport.  “Black car” luxury limo services in some metropolitan areas these days run upwards of $70 per hour or $4 per mile.    

The 1996 Town Car’s 281cid V8 was factory rated at 210 horsepower, a respectable number for its time although the car weighs in at almost exactly two tons, so performance took a back seat to comfort.  Power was sent to the rear wheels via a four-speed automatic transmission.  

With its maintenance sorted out and a seal of approval from someone who claims to have owned several Town Cars, this opportunity is compelling.

The seller’s ad concludes, “My price is firm.  You are paying for a well-maintained quality car that doesn’t need any money dumped into it.  This car is ready to drive and enjoy.”   

At an asking price of only $5,000, maybe you could forego the driving altogether and hire someone to do that for you.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day

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