26th Jan 2012, 13:33
If you know nothing about cars, then you should not try to purchase a 33 year old car that you are unsure of. Because even if it were in pristine shape, stuff is gonna break. And not too many people know how to work on these old cars, it's becoming a lost art.
You find a good tech who still knows carburetors, distributors, and points systems (I'm well aware these use electronic ignition systems, so be quiet), then I'll show you a dying breed.
My recommendation to you is to let it go, or buy it and start learning, but be prepared to spend some $$$$. I daily drive a 1978 Lincoln Mark V 460, it gets expensive, and I don't mean in gas, but I do it because I love my car, and I am a professional automotive diagnostic technician. My money just goes into the parts I require.
Best of luck, you just have to figure out what it's worth to YOU.
27th Jan 2012, 00:07
If the car has never been winter driven and is in mint condition, $2500-3000 would be a fair price to pay. If you have a hard time building up cash, a classic Lincoln is probably not the best investment.
27th Jan 2012, 17:10
Hey, this is a reply to the person who is thinking about buying the Lincoln.
If you really feel that this car is the one, go for it. You only live once. But make sure the car is worth it.
Myself personally I would offer the deal $800 cash. It is the middle of the winter, not many people are buying toys of any kinds. This is not a super collectible car either; even the 2 door coupes of that era don't sell for very much. When compared to let's say a 79 Camaro, 79 Monte Carlo, or 79 F-150 or 79 Chevy pickup, which in very condition will go for $5k-$10k, a mint condition 79 Thunderbird coupe or Lincoln Town Car will go for $1k to $2k. Very good for the buyer, as you can get these cars at a great price if you are into them.
I would buy it if it is safety certified, after taking a good test drive and making sure everything runs well. Make a checklist, and check all items like turn signals, lights, everything outside the car. Check all features like wipers, power windows, AC, heat, locks, mirrors, seat belts, rear view mirror, etc. Check inside upholstery for tears, damage, odor, carpet stains. Run the car at idle, see if it idles smooth and check for engine noises, loose belts, etc. Check oil levels, color of oil, coolant levels, transmission fluid level and color.
Check shocks and suspension, tires, brakes (test while driving).
* Very important * check underneath for frame rust, panel rust, or rusted out exhaust and manifold.
If the car has a few problems or things that are wrong, you can bring that up before making your offer. I would start at $800, say that is all you can offer. They would maybe take it, or you could negotiate up to $1000. If they say no, just come back in a few days, it will still be there, and maybe they will take it.
These are such great cars to drive, the last V-8 rear wheel drive luxury land yachts. I have had a few classic cars over the years and they are a lot of fun. Just make sure you have enough to cover the cost of the car, and some more money put aside for oil change, tuneup, plugs, tires, little things it may need, as most likely this is a senior citizens car that has been sitting for a while or rarely driven. Most likely an estate sale or an unwanted inheritance traded in.
The best thing to do is fill the tank with premium gasoline and add a bottle of carburetor cleaner formula. Best cheap tuneup, and it will clean out the engine and carburetor.
Good luck, and let us know how it goes!
8th Jan 2013, 19:11
You probably have a bad sending unit in the gas tank. It's a very easy replacement, but I would recommend you have a shop do it unless you know for sure that you can drain the gas without any chance of igniting the fuel.
You can find the sending units online. Figure the better part of $200 for OEM, but I found mine for under $100, but it's aftermarket (for me, who cares. Nobody goes under there to check for a part number!).
When I bought my Mark, the gas tank gauge didn't work at all. Now, it's perfect. From what I understand, it's a very common problem with the Mark V's.
18th Dec 2013, 20:01
Hello, I had the same problem. It wouldn't turn over, and I tried to boost it as well, and got the same outcome. I tested to see if I was getting power from the key to the solenoid, which I was, then I tested the cable from the solenoid to the starter and got nothing. I then replaced the solenoid and it started like a dream. I hope this helps.
2nd Jul 2014, 01:18
To the guy with 146,000 miles on his Mark 5 Lincoln, look on eBay right now and you'll see one for sale, with only 27,000 original miles on it. So they are out there with lower mileage; you just have to do a little digging.
Awesome cars... at any mileage.
3rd Aug 2014, 22:07
I have a 1979 MK V that was stored for the winter. It used to start fine, but occasionally it would seem to drag at the starter when warm. But now it won't start at all. So I changed the solenoid, but still nothing. Would it be a faulty starter? Can anyone answer this?
6th Aug 2014, 14:21
Sometimes heat soak does this to starters, if only when the car is hot. I wrapped my starter with heat shield wrap from Autozone. Worth a shot for under 20.00.
15th Aug 2014, 16:49
I don't want to be that guy, but with this kind of stuff, if you don't know how to do anything yourself, you shouldn't really mess with it. Buy at your own risk...
17th Aug 2014, 23:48
There are YouTube videos on many models that need maintenance. No need to shy away unless it's transmissions or engines. Even then, buy right and pay and have it done. Buying old cars for nice weekend drivers is fun.
8th Jan 2015, 17:47
I am looking for a replacement gas sending unit for a 1978 Lincoln Mark V. I need one with 3 prongs, which I assume is the miles to empty feature.
Can't seem to find one, any suggestions?
4th May 2015, 01:47
Try Lincoln Land for a sending unit. I have 79 Continental Sedan Collectors Series. Also a 74 Mark. The 74 was my first car at 17; I'm 52 now. It's still like new.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but these are really pieces of rolling art. Sculptures on wheels.
16th May 2015, 03:36
Hi, I've been trying to start my dad's 1979 Lincoln Continental Cartier Edition that's been stored in the garage for many years. It has only 16,000 original kilometres on it (about 10,000 miles). It cranks but doesn't start. I found that no gas is going into the carburetor, no matter how much I pump the gas pedal. The tank has gas. Can someone tell me if it's a bad fuel pump that could likely be the cause? If so, where would it be located? Thanks in advance!
17th May 2015, 03:47
Yep, probably a bad pump and lines. The pump is in the rear of the car if I recall correctly.
17th May 2015, 20:51
Considering it's a mechanical pump driven off the camshaft, it's unlikely to be in the rear of the car. The location of the pump can be found by following the fuel line off the carburetor down to the side of the engine.
If the fuel filter has not already been replaced, that should be done before replacing the pump. The filter may be clogged with old gasoline deposits if the car has been sitting for a long time.
20th Jul 2015, 20:31
We have a 79 Mark V that refuses to start. The engine turns over, but just won't start. It has a new carburetor, new battery, & new ignition coil. Fuel goes into the carburetor just fine when turning over. Any suggestions on what the problem is? Thanks.
23rd Jul 2015, 12:21
Does it have spark? If you take out a spark plug and lay it on the engine block, does it spark when you crank it? The coil might have been hooked up incorrectly; maybe the positive and negative are reversed, or the coil wire isn't seated properly. The distributor cap might have been jostled, etc.
24th Jul 2015, 03:05
Ignition column interlock fully in park?
Battery cable clamps brushed, tightened and clean, and a good clean cable ground?
24th Jul 2015, 13:36
Uh, if any of those were at fault, the engine would not "turn over".
Instead, check for spark as suggested in the preceding comment.
25th Jul 2015, 00:28
It shuts down. I would check the list. Poor grounds and heat can also shut down vehicles.