1992 Lincoln Town Car

I got in to the 92 Lincoln, shifted into drive, and noticed transmission slippage. I checked the transmission fluid. The fluid did not smell burned but was under the add a pint line. I added fluid to the full line. The car is worse. As you shift into drive, then you have to race the engine to get the car to move forward. The car will go up the block but not with any speed. It seems as if it is not developing enough power to get the car to move forward. If I throw the car in reverse, it drives normal. Is it time to sell the car to the demolition derby?

You have to have a good transmission to use in the demo derby-at least reverse. You are burning up the clutches by driving it while it slips. In short order they will be shot if not already. It could be a pump or pressure issue but of course more likely is bad clutches which requires an overhaul. You need to get it to a trans shop for final diagnosis though. Not Scamco or other franchises but an Atra member.

I’m not a mechanic or trans expert and just from my experience and others may have better answers. One question would be if it does it in reverse too and in low and 2nd too?

Thanks an aweful lot!

I’d bring the car to a good local transmission shop for a diagnosis and an estimate. However, assuming you need the transmission to be replaced, I don’t think I’d put any money into a car of this age, unless it happens to be in unusually good condition with unusually low mileage, so be prepared to junk it at that point.

Could be just a clogged trans filter.

Unless the transmission has been rebuilt or replaced at one time it’s 25 years old. All of the large assortment of rubber seals and O-rings inside are also 25 years old. It’s possible due to sheer age and miles that the clutches are worn and various pressures are not what they should be.

If the car is clean and runs good my vote would be to replace the transmission if needed.

You can do a converter stall test yourself and that can determine whether the trans is on the way out or not.
Set the park brake and hold the foot brake.
Shift into LOW and rev the engine.
Note the RPMs at which the engine tries to stall.
Allow to idle a few minutes.
Repeat that process for SECOND.
Allow to idle…
Repeat in DRIVE.
Allow to idle.
Do NOT continually repeat this test or hold the throttle. Each test should be done quickly.

If the RPMs are going up to say 3000 or whatever before the engine bogs then the transmission is slipping and it’s time for a replacement.
You should feel the engine bog each time around 2000-2200 RPM at the most.

When my Ford C4 equipped truck developed this symptom, it was in the transmission shop a week later for a transmission rebuild. Auto transmissions fail b/c of internal fluid leaks and worn out clutches. Yes, auto’s have clutches too, just more of them. For a tranny as common as a Ford C4 there are kits the shops buy that have all the replaceable parts. All the shop has to do it remove the transmission, take it apart, replace all the replaceable parts, and put it all back together again. Of course the challenge is, this has to all be done in a very clean environment. But at least for me the cost of a tranny rebuild was within reason. And it returned the transmission operation to like-new.

Edit: Hey, Lincoln is a Ford product, right? Maybe it has a C4 too. Or a C6.

The transmission in that Lincoln should be an AODE which was the electronically controlled replacement for the AOD with the latter using a throttle cable control. My memory is hazy but I think 1992 was the first year for the AODE.

The AODE was followed by the 4R70W; the latter having a wide ratio gear set and larger bushing in the extension housing.

I have a slightly different view of things like this. Using pure logic with no feelings or emotions involved, it is obvious it is time to send that car to the salvage yard.

My view may be different. If that car fits your needs, all of them, and you like it, and can afford it, why not fix it up? The emphasis here is on “and you like it.”

People spend lots of money foolishly on things just because they like them. They do not apologize for it, nor should they. Life without having a good time isn’t much of a life.

if you can afford that transmission repair, and think it will give you additional service after the repair, AND YOU LIKE DRIVING IT, then go for it.

The negative is that old cars like that, after you do the obvious repair, sometimes develop even worse problems. We had a 70’s 8 or 9 passenger Pontiac wagon, one of the old behemoths.

I liked it, and it was a good car for a Scout leader. Carried a lot of boys and their camping stuff.

So, when the motor went bad, and I forget exactly what was wrong, that was a lot of years ago, I decided to give it a real rebuild by a master rebuilder. He rebuilt the motor very well.

But, soon after that, other things went wrong. The rubber door seals started leaking and before I realized it, the car was moldy. My wife could not stand it.

And, what seemed like steel soon turned out to be mostly rust.

I sold it to my “hippy” friend for $1 and he drove it for several more years. Ran out good, but it was still junk. He put planks where the bumpers were, and put duct tape over the rust holes, and sprayed the tape white to match.

Later, it stopped working. He let it sit until his step-son needed a car and got it running again. One day on the Interstate, it died, so the step-son hitched a ride and let the gendarmes have it.

I really don’t regret having that motor rebuilt. It was a decision and life has so many, many of them much more costly than that motor rebuild. And, I could afford it. it was only a minor setback in my financial program. The only reason I didn’t buy a new car was a life style decision.


In the US, that is. If I successfully get my 2002 Sienna with 216,000 miles on it, ‘mexicanized’ later this year, I expect to keep it running as long as parts can be obtained. And, in Mexico that tends to be a very long time.

Motor rebuilds. Transmission rebuilds. Uncrumple the ball the wreck makes of it. Upholstery renovation. When labor is cheap, you can do a lot to a car to keep it going.

The key is the Sienna has spent almost no time in the snow/salt zone.

Your Lincoln is the first year for the legendary “Panther” series of cars which includes the Grand Marq and Crown Vic…The transmissions in these cars, shared with the F-150 trucks, can be rebuilt about as cheaply as any because there are so many of them…So if the car is otherwise sound and rust-free, it might be worth having it repaired…If it has over 200K miles on it, it might be smarter to just let it go and find a newer, lower mileage Panther…

Demolition Derby!!!

Isn’t this a little backwards. Half the maneuvers in a demolition derby are avoiding getting hit by the other cars. This car hardly moves!!!

Kind of like going bear hunting with a BB gun.