No, there’s no Mark III, V or VI to be found here, at least for now. Just as well. But I’ve been sitting on this Mark VII for almost a year, from the looks of the daffodils blooming (and they are, hereabouts). But the Mark VII was a different animal altogether. Quite the radical break, but then Ford had more than hit the end of the road with the ugly, boxy wallowing stuff they’d been pushing out the door for decades. Their near-brush with bankruptcy in 1980 resulted in a whole new regime and approach: headed by the pragmatic but car enthusiast Donald Petersen. But development money was tight, so the Town Car became immortal. But a relatively low-budget solution to the dead-end Mark VI was handy in the form of the new aero-Thunderbird.
The LSC version got quite the gushing write-ups in the buff books, and the moniker “hot rod Lincoln” stuck. Well, compared to the gushy wallowing dogs that Lincolns had been for all-too long, it shouldn’t have come as a surprise. If it didn’t have that damn fake tire hump in the trunk, I might have been seriously tempted after my time with an ’83 Turbo-Coupe Bird. Whatever; it’s a polarizing feature, and I know there are some not far from here who love it.
Its timing was good, because the German coupes were becoming insanely expensive. And as Ford figured out the benefits of modern port fuel injection, the power of the 5.0 V8 rose gradually, up to 225. Handling of the fairly stiff Fox-body was optimized, and although the seats were comfy, BMW owners were not going to feel welcome in this interior otherwise. But there’s no question about it, the transformation from the Mark VI to this VII was about as radical as it got. Of course association with the past Marks may have been an obstacle to some buyers. But it was a fairly decent seller, and helped see Lincoln and Ford out of its darkest years.