6th Jul 2018, 02:52

Power windows:

If you are having regulator problems, this is a nuisance because ALL the aftermarket brands are garbage. Nobody has the courage to make the plastic pieces that break out of metal. You're lucky to get 2 years out of an aftermarket.

Transmission shudder:

Drain all 14 quarts of fluid out of the pan and torque converter and replace it with Mercon 5 fluid and a small bottle of Motorcraft "friction modifier". This should be done every 40-50 thousand miles.

Air suspension:

Replace the air bags with a spring conversion kit. Easy to do if you are mechanically inclined. The air bags, like tires, are made of rubber and don't last forever.

Engine surges:

Either an IAC valve or TPS sensor. Clean the mass air flow.


The horn itself under the hood usually is what goes bad.

Automatic dimming mirrors "burnt":

You're on your own, I never heard of that.

Sounds to me like the age caught up with the car before the mileage could.

I own a '96 and with 235,000 miles and in the past 11 years of ownership it's had repairs here and there, including the air suspension and window regulators like yours... 7 driver window regulators that is.

6th Jul 2018, 23:05

Also the suspension components are very weak on them (ball joints, control arm bushings, all fail pretty early in the car's life).

The interior plastics are very shoddy and flimsy too.

The 90s were the last nice traditionally styled Town Cars and they did run very smooth when in good condition, but as the 2000s came around the quality got even worse.

I sure do miss the Townies though. Nothing today still rides as well as Town Cars, and nothing today either comes close to the interior size and comfort of the 94-96 Cadillac Fleetwoods.

At the same time, the 70s Lincolns was the ultimate era in true living room comfort on wheels and in styling.

9th Jul 2018, 16:19

Reply to Jul 6 02:19. Comparing your 78 Continental and your Cadillac, are there huge differences in ride isolation from bumps and potholes, road noise and engine quietness, steering feel and braking?

10th Jul 2018, 17:51

The differences are not huge.

10th Jul 2018, 21:02

My 78 Lincoln definitely rides better, is smoother and softer than my 94 Fleetwood.

The seats in my Lincoln are cloth and are very plush, while the Caddy had leather seats and were actually pretty firm compared to the older Cads of the past I’ve been in.

The Caddy always rode a bit harsher too, but not terribly harsh.

The 90s era Cads and Lincolns are tuned for more handling than total comfort.

Go drive a 70s Lincoln and Cad and you’ll know exactly what I mean.

As far as quietness goes, and even the quality of materials and solidarity of each vehicle, the 78 Lincoln is by far the best of em.

Everything just feels better put together on the Lincoln besides for the dash, which is pretty cheap feeling.

Looking under both cars, the Lincoln’s frame and drivetrain is much beefier and truck like vs the Caddy Fleetwood; this includes the body mount bushings, and bracing which looks much more sturdy under the Lincoln. This is one of the major reasons why the car rides so smooth and cloud 9 like.

At the same time, this is an unfair comparison as the 90s Fleetwood is much smaller than say a 70s Cadillac Fleetwood. But I used to own a 70s Caddy Deville back in the day, and the 78 Lincoln still rides better than the Cad did from what I remember. Too many squeaks and rattles in the 72 Cad, while the Lincoln is silent.

11th Jul 2018, 15:24

My nod goes to the 1988 Lincoln Town Car. Some of the mid 60s and early 70s Cadillacs were certainly very nice, and these were based on brand new at the time. I would like to have my dad's 62 Lincoln convertible though back today.

12th Jul 2018, 07:55

Cadillac's last truly golden era or even year was probably the 65 or 68 model year in terms of overall quality, high engine performance, styling, size, influence in the industry, and being highly regarded and desirable.

Because by the 70s, Cadillac's quality went downhill in many aspects, while Lincoln kept its quality up pretty much until 1977 or 79.

70s Cads are not bad cars per se; they are wonderful drivers, but going from a 75 Cadillac Deville to a 65 Deville, the quality of materials and detail of everything you see and touch is much much better in the 65.

12th Jul 2018, 20:51

Opinions vary.

I like both makes and personally feel that Cadillac was the better car in the 70s. Compared to Lincoln, sales were better and reliability was a little better. The Cadillac 472, 500, and 425 engine family was rock solid. The 400 and 460 used in Lincoln were nice too, but they were obviously Ford engines used in other makes. Cadillac engines were exclusive to Cadillacs. What's not to like about 70s interior?

Those were my favorites for both brands. Can't beat sitting in a quiet den on a comfortable couch. That's the way I see it. I'm sure others would disagree, especially anybody who wasn't around during that era.

12th Jul 2018, 21:20

We are talking about an almost 22 year old car here. Regardless of brand, it's to be expected that things are going to break, wear out, or fail when something gets to be that old.

13th Jul 2018, 03:01

Thanks for the great information. There's a 76 Town Coupe and a 79 Continental Town Car for sale near me and I shall check them out.

13th Jul 2018, 17:59

You can have a car that’s only a couple years old that can follow that reasoning with neglect, hard usage with numerous potholes etc. Best to look at every used car very carefully. And pray for the cream puff. I have run across nice cars exactly like this from seniors going from costly assisted living or present at senior centers. Low mileage cars only being sold due to age, reflexes, vision or health concerns. Some right in your backyard vs internet quests.

15th Jul 2018, 03:14

Interesting comment on the Cadillac 368-500 engines.

Generally speaking, these are solid engines, but I've seen a few run into trouble when the oil pump became worn; during an oil change the oil pump would lose its prime, and not be able to generate oil pressure upon startup. The workaround was to take the oil pump cover off, and pack the gears in Vaseline or some other grease to get the pump that prime. Otherwise, the engine could not produce oil pressure when you restated it, and if you did not shut it off, it would self-destruct. Some folks do not look at oil lights after an oil change ;)

15th Jul 2018, 11:44

I had a used black 70 Fleetwood mint Limousine that I bought to have fun with. I drove it quite a bit with family and friends on trips. It was very well maintained. It’s been years now since I had it. My recollection was how swift it was for its size. And wondering how it burned up so much high octane fuel. Seemed to use so much you wondered if there was a hole in the fuel tank. There wasn’t. I think there were some added engine mods being a government car. Comfortable, divider window, trunk portholes, stereo override, and lots of room. The air conditioning would freeze you best one I ever had in any car. A Cadillac Fleetwood from that time period was a very solid, well built automobile. Wish I kept that one and several other rare ones I let slip away. It really limited my parking space at home was the main reason I sold it, plus I flipped at double what I paid as the other factor. Nice memory with that Cadillac. I saw ones similar in a Original Doors end of concert video with Jim Morrison inside, and also in one of the Dirty Harry sequels. Was cool to see one like it again. Not an everyday sight.