1996 Ford Thunderbird LX 4.6L V-8 from North America


Affordable performance in a good looking skin with a touch of luxury


Intake manifold blew at 70K miles (covered by a general recall).

Also needed an oil pan and gasket replacement ($500).

Driver's side window needs a new track ($100).

Stock CD player malfunctioned early on -- refused to eject a CD, replaced the entire stereo system.

General Comments:

I was very pleased with the car until just recently. Seems like once it passed 70K miles, everything started to go wrong. Intake manifold was covered by a recall, but it still cost me $300 for diagnosis at another repair shop (before I knew of the recall -- thank goodness I checked it out!) towing, and rental car expenses. And, I guess living in a colder climate, a rusting oil pan is not uncommon, but not cheap to fix!

Seats, interior very comfortable. Love the sunroof/moon roof. Handles well for such a large, heavy car. V-8 motor performs great, and delivers OK mileage in the city (17-20), better on the highway (25-30). Of course, that depends widely on driving habits.

Hopefully, the problems have passed, and I can get back to ENJOYING my car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 8th September, 2001

1996 Ford Thunderbird LX 4.7L V8 from North America


Somewhere between a sedan and a sports car


Intake manifold replaced under recall.

Decorative light on trunk lid cost $200 to replace a burnt out light bulb.

Shifter brake interlock cost $550 to replace.

Lot's of pinging when I get on it, even after a dealer tune-up.

Shock absorber gone after 60K miles.

Brakes replaced at 80K miles.

Transmission seal for drive shaft gone at 80K miles.

Overall, pretty reliable, but when it breaks the fix ain't cheap.

General Comments:

The model with sports handling option is pretty fun to drive, but the standard suspension wanders all over the road.

V8 has plenty of pep.

Cabin is comfortable for 260 pounds on 6'0" frame, but not really big enough for a 280 pound 6'4" friend. Interior will seem huge for petite people.

Air conditioning not quite up to Arizona summers.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 7th September, 2001

1996 Ford Thunderbird LX 4.6 Liter V8 from North America


It's a nice sleek car for the money


Cracked manifold (recalled).

Brakes at needed at 82,000 miles.

Door hinges needed to be replaced on the driver's side.

General Comments:

This car is really comfortable when on long or short trips.

The V8 engine makes the car with a fast pickup, but also bad on gas.

This car is a good summer car, however not good in the snow because of the rear wheel drive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th May, 2001

26th Jul 2008, 12:33

I own a 1996 Ford Thunderbird LX V8. I am wondering about this recall you mentioned. When was this? I bought mine second hand in 2003. Thanks.

1996 Ford Thunderbird LX 4.6 liter V8 from North America


A fast, fun and good looking


Cracked manifold (recall).

Brakes squealing.

Battery/voltage gauge moves up and down repeatedly while the car is stopped and running. Still don't know what that is.

Hinges on the door needed to be replaced (recall).

Cooling system needs to be replaced (recall).

General Comments:

This car is fast and sporty looking, however it is not too good in the snow or rain because it is rear wheel drive.

Good summer car.

Sun roof is a plus.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th April, 2001

1996 Ford Thunderbird LX 3.8 V6 from North America


Fair bargain, should never been pulled from the Ford lineup


No problems with engine until Ford recalled it for a gasket replacement, then the engine blew up but Ford replaced it.

It has always and still does make a growling noise while moving and turning the steering wheel in either direction. Can anyone help on this problem as the Ford dealer has no clue.

Paint really sucks too.

General Comments:

Overall it has been a good car. Wife likes it and it is unusual for her to like anything but her mother!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th January, 2001

2nd Mar 2003, 11:33

I love it. Please give your wife a pat as you go by. I've had a '92 T-bird that I bought used with 40,000 miles. I drove the living daylights out of the car and then gave it to my son. Very few problems - all minor. He is still driving it with about 160,000 miles logged. The rocker panels are rusting out and in order to replace them, the mechanic would have to weld new metal into the unibody. Very expensive for a college student. He doesn't look down there that much anyway. It is one of the best riding cars I've owned.