I would trade it as it's old. Anyone buying a Lincoln I know gets a new one every 5 years. Or a new Cadillac. My parents switched to the Cadillac lately. Great handling, ride and performance.
Original poster here:
Wow, I didn't know I'd create such a debate! To the group of folks above, in no particular order:
Yes I did buy it because I liked it, and to impress. When I bought it, I worked on Wall Street, but not making that much money, so I bought used, thinking it would be the same reliability as the Town Car. However I was wrong, and having a long distance relationship (I live in NY and my girl lives in MA, rear wheel drive isn't an option unless I don't want to go see her for 3-4 months a year, and also my best friend & his wife, who I frequently visit live in upstate NY; again, not cool in winter with RWD, or I'd bought a Town Car since I see all these cabs in NYC with 300K+ on them).
I'm now a motorman, don't roll with the same crowd or need to impress, and am looking for a Honda Accord/Toyota Camry, since I hear all these people getting 200K+ on basic maintenance, including many of my friends. I mainly wrote that review to save people from making the same mistake I did, that is buying to impress, or thinking it's going to be like a FWD Town Car.
I DO love driving it, just drove it to New Bedford, MA last week, now I was gonna drive it upstate to see my friend, and today I became the proud owner of a low rider, as the air springs totally took a dump, as my mechanic put it, and he's pricing me a conversion kit (any recommendations?).
My mother who suffers from depression LOVES riding in it, one of the few things which makes her happy, which is another reason I kept it so long... yes I know I have a Accord budget (not Civic, thank God, way too small), and yes these cars are for RICH people, who can trade em in every 3-5 years, not caring when all these unnecessary bells & whistles break, since they will be long rid of it by then, and as far as the gas, it just adds insult to injury. Lesson learned, I'm MIDDLE CLASS, and probably always will be, so I'm going to eventually replace the RICH FOLKS car, with a MIDDLE CLASS folks car.
I wrote a whole book of a response, but forgot you. Sorry. I don't think I'm being ripped off, as it was more than 1 mechanic who quoted this.
Most things on this car are labor intensive, since you need to get under the car to do most things, including the belt. I always used to do my own belts/hoses/fluids. The problem is on this thing I can't REACH most of the stuff, or would have to take out other things to do so, which I don't have the time for... I put a radiator in each of my last 2 cars (85 Celebrity, replaced radiator in 98, 93 Cougar, replaced radiator in 04) 2-3 hours of my labor for each. Now the instructions for a 2000 Conti are "raise vehicle on a hoist" etc. Translation: if it ever needs a radiator, I will have to pay someone to do it.
The main problem here, is as someone else mentioned, this car is basically a fancy Taurus, so they shoehorned a V-8 32V engine in it, leaving no room for me to even pull out the freaking AIR FILTER, that my girlfriend or my 68 year old MOTHER could do on most other cars.
Odd as it sounds, I'm sick of making mechanics rich, and if I had the dough for a 2013 Lincoln new, I wouldn't still own this car. I barely have the money for the 09-10 Accord I'm gonna replace it with, and unlike most of the schmucks in America, I only buy what I can pay for in CA$H.
My parents bought new Lincolns, as they like luxury, great ride and comfort. Or Cadillacs prior. If you have a tight beer budget and champagne taste, maybe it's finally time to be realistic. I am not faulting anyone. I see a lot of reviews on here, and wonder how many buy used Lexus, Acuras, Lincolns etc at 10 years old and do not properly maintain them after. Not everyone can afford Xenon 300.00 headlights, 1000.00 set of tires, 2000.00 suspension repairs and the like.
My friend bought a used Range Rover cheap, old actually, and first complained over the fuel consumption, then the massive repairs. So it's parked.
Actually, image and ego can cost you as well as the stress. The last thing I would want to buy is a car to impress a woman. In the end they see through it, and I believe in splitting the expense some of the time at least! If image is the goal, better yourself, and then you can buy a new one.
Sorry to hear about your problems with your car.
My advice? Buy a Town car. The V-8 is much more reliable, as is the rear wheel drive panther platform. This is a very well built car. The Continental however does not share that feature.
I am in my 20's and middle class, not a rich man by any means, but I work hard and just finished school a few years ago. I drive a mint condition 80's Crown Victoria, white with blue inside, absolutely love the car and would not trade it for anything. I feel like the king of the world driving it, get a lot of compliments on it, and it has never broken down or needed one single repair, as it was well maintained by the previous owner.
A brand new Accord is kind of a waste of money for a boring, overpriced and overrated car. Honda quality has gone downhill in recent years, Hyundai or Ford is a much better value if shopping for a new 2012.
Personally however I would try get a low mileage, recent model used Town Car, as it seems like you enjoy this type of car greatly, as would I as well. You can easily get used to the rear wheel drive in winter time; it just takes a bit more caution, that's all.
Anyways, best of luck, hope you get a nice new ride!
I really don't think the Continental has been an "image" car for a long time. Maybe in the mid nineties when the last generation debuted, but it was still mainly senior citizens that bought them by then. For the most part, unless you are trying to impress members of the bridge club or others at the senior center, a Lincoln is not going to cut it in this day and age.
I am 27 and drive what I like, I have had 4 Buicks in a row, and while some of them have been in the luxury price range, I highly doubt that they impress most people. I could care less though, I buy them because they are reliable, comfortable, and attractive in my eyes.