1997 Ford Thunderbird 4.6 V8 from North America

Summary:

Very good car, but watch out for the front end

Faults:

I have replaced almost every part in the front end in 2014 before 120000 miles.

Alternator, starter, and battery recently after 140000 miles.

General Comments:

The Ford Thunderbird is without a doubt the best Ford vehicle I have ever owned. This car still keeps up and passes newer vehicles well, and the gas mileage is very good also for the V8 engine. Over 20 for sure.

The only big issue with this car was having to replace the front end parts; ended up being very expensive and took 3 trips to get it correct. I only paid for the 1st trip.

The best part about this car is the way it corners and handles; it is very agile feeling.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th May, 2016

29th May 2016, 02:30

What did you have to replace in the front end?

4th Jun 2016, 18:22

Struts, control arms, ball joints, tie rods, and the drag links. These issues were most likely caused by the age of the car.

The part that upset me was making repeated trips after getting the car back due to dealing with a horrible mechanic. I told him I just wanted the car to not have steering issues, make clunking noises, and drive straight; told them to fix whatever it takes and they obviously did not. The tie rods and drag links were fixed last because the car still made clunking noises while steering and it also wandered a little bit.

Luckily for me the car has been great since this fiasco, I guess it is common for the control arms and ball joints to wear out.

5th Jun 2016, 22:05

Ball joints on most Fords from that era were very common to be replaced. The original equipped are non-serviceable. At least Moog aftermarkets (the only replacement brand that are any good) have fittings so they can be greased and last a lot longer.

1997 Ford Thunderbird LX 4.6L V8 from North America

Summary:

I enjoyed the time I spent driving it

Faults:

Alternator, starter, ignition coils, oil and trans pan have been fixed over the time I have had the bird.

Needs suspension work in the front end.

General Comments:

I love this car so much and am sad to park it. For a Ford, this car has been a fun and fast one for the money. The V8 is very spunky along with the auto trans paired to it. The gas mileage is actually very good also. 18-27 MPG.

The V8 still starts right up and burns no oil, the trans shifts smooth, but the suspension is giving up. The rubber pieces are giving out on the suspension parts. I might fix it, but I might get a new car. Still love this and recommend buying one with low miles and service records. Oh and I just maintain it by changing the fluids on time. The trans and engine are built tough in this one.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th February, 2016

27th Feb 2016, 03:21

The '94-'97 Thunderbird is my favorite car of all time. I remember sitting on my grandfather's lap in 1997 when he brought his home, brand new. I loved the curvature of the dash and how everything was aimed ergonomically toward the driver. I graduate from college in 70 days, and I'm looking for jobs in usability testing and in human factors/ergonomics, all because I ever sat in a '97 Thunderbird. I've never found a car that quite sparks my interest like this style T-Bird.

28th Feb 2016, 06:08

Ford was on to something with this car. Not perfect, but close enough, where its charm would overwhelm its negatives. Good car.

1997 Ford Thunderbird LX 4.6 V8 from North America

Summary:

I have a new Cadillac, GMC, a Pontiac and the old Thunderbird. The T-Bird is my favorite.

Faults:

Intake manifold.

Struts.

Radiator.

Coil packs.

Brake calipers.

Throttle position sensor.

Alternator.

Power steering pump.

Oxygen sensors.

Power antenna.

Headlights.

General Comments:

This has got to be one of the best used cars I have ever owned. Purchased it 8 years ago with 93000 miles on it.

All of the items I have replaced are normal replacement items for a vehicle with this many miles.

I purchased the car to park at the airport, but fell in love with the comfort and handling, and started to use it as a daily driver.

The 4.6 V8 gives me 26 MPG on the highway, and the interior is comfortable and quiet.

I drive the car between cities, and still put over 3000 miles on it each month.

Ford made a mistake when they discontinued this line. With an independent rear suspension and rear wheel drive, it's a joy to handle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th February, 2013

12th Feb 2013, 16:25

How much did you have to pay to pick this one up? These can be astoundingly cheap sometimes, given how much car it is.