By on September 9, 2019

In the late Eighties, American auto manufacturers still sold large, traditional luxury sedans in decent numbers. Their aging sedan consumer base fondly remembered the vinyl and chrome of yesteryear and still relished brougham-style accoutrements.

Up for consideration today are three comfortable, luxury-oriented sedans from 1988. It’s hard to lose here.

(Read More…)

By on September 3, 2019

1974 Lincoln Continental Mark IV in Denver junkyard, LH front view - ©2019 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsBig, Detroit-made Malaise Era personal luxury coupes still keep showing up in the big self-service wrecking yards, more than 35 years after the last one rolled off the assembly line. Yes, the diminished-expectations Mark VI, the “What Oil Crisis?” Mark V, and the rococo Mark IV— examples of each of these will appear in your local U-Wrench yard from time to time.

Here’s a worn-out Mark IV from the year of Nixon’s resignation and Haile Selassie’s banishment from his throne in a lowly Beetle, now awaiting The Crusher in a Denver yard. (Read More…)

By on June 28, 2019

Davey G Johnson, Automotive Journalist Image: Davey's Public Facebook Page

Perhaps you’ve read about Davey G Johnson, the pioneer online car scribe that never lost his “voice” as he rose up journalism’s ranks.  He was a sounding board for my autoblogging career (at it were), a TTAC well wisher and a willing partner in the Mehta brother’s looney misadventures

And now, every time time I see the red lights on TTAC’s Yoast SEO plug-inI’m reminded how his SEO-unfriendly ledes weaved a story with seemingly no connection to the automobile covered, but he made it work before you had to click to see more. Nobody did it like Herr Johnson: making my last face-to-face with the legend even more bittersweet. 

Because the finale to our conversation is so suitably Davey…  (Read More…)

By on June 11, 2019

The end of the Seventies was a time of quiet reflection. A time where Americans pondered things like fuel prices, polyester suits, and what a large sedan should be. As the reality of automotive downsizing moved ever closer to realization, one or two of the large sedan dinosaurs had a last hurrah. Today’s Rare Ride is one such example.

It’s a 1979 Lincoln Town car; more specifically the extra-luxurious Williamsburg Edition.

(Read More…)

By on February 5, 2019

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series Delivery, Image: Sajeev Mehta

It happened: TTAC’s Ford GT arrived.

And the moment felt extra special because it isn’t a foreign exotic — it’s an American Supercar evoking a rich branding history buried deep within many of us. I reckon every GT delivery is loaded with Ford-centric stories involving family, friends and passersby.

(Read More…)

By on January 21, 2019

Image: Lincoln

“Exceptionally popular” is a descriptor that does not jibe well with “Lincoln Continental,” as sales of the division’s flagship sedan haven’t exactly fallen into the category of scorching. Introduced late in 2016 as a 2017 model year vehicle, sales of the Continental fell 3.8 percent, year over year, in December, and 27.1 percent for the entirety of 2018.

While the Continental suffers from a crossover-inflicted illness impacting all cars, one Continental variant has no trouble generating demand: the lengthened, limited-edition Coach Door Edition, which bowed late last year with a price tag of just over $110,000.

People clearly want to be seen exiting from rear doors that open the wrong way. (Read More…)

By on December 19, 2018

Plenty of digital ink and hurt fingers and bums occurred over the past few days, after Lincoln announced its limited run of Coach Door Edition Continentals (don’t call the doors by their common lexicon name).

But I’m here today to ask you whether any of it matters.

(Read More…)

By on December 17, 2018

Image: Lincoln

It’s true. You’ll soon be able to slap down a pile of hard-earned cash for a 2019 Lincoln Continental with suicide coach-style doors. Well, 80 of you will.

To mark the 80th anniversary of the Continental nameplate, Lincoln Motor Company went the extra mile for heritage devotees, revealing a limited-edition model that dispenses with front-hinged rear doors and adds half a foot of wheelbase to pull it off. You’ve never had a better look at the Continental’s B-pillar. (Read More…)

By on December 13, 2018

Image: Lincoln

So many of us want this to be more than just a sick tease that results in nothing new on the showroom floor. Would we buy it even if it wasn’t? That’s debatable.

Regardless, all we have now is the tease, plus plenty of clues. Posted Thursday afternoon to Lincoln Motor Company’s social media accounts, an image of suicide doors — a feature that graced Lincoln Continental sedans from 1961 to 1969 — has appeared, along with a cryptic message. (Read More…)

By on August 10, 2018

1988 Saturn SL2, Image: OPTTAC Commentator TitusL writes:

Hi Sajeev,

I always appreciate your sound advice and commentary on the TTAC website, which is the reason why I’m reaching out.

After 18 years of ownership, I’ve decided to part ways with my 1998 Saturn SL2. The car has been reliable and has been easy to do routine maintenance on as little things popped up over the years. I’ve maintained it well, and the paint, body, and interior looks better than some cars half its age. However, with most cars of its vintage I’m starting to see “senior car” problems rear their ugly heads, and in certain instances I’m having to consider buying 2nd & 3rd generation replacement parts — yes, I’m talking about you, catalytic converter! Add to that the fact that there has been infinitely many technological improvements over the past 20 yrs. Which even further validates my reason for wanting something a bit fresher.

As of current, I’ve been trying to “soft sell” the car on a Saturn enthusiast website, with no takers yet. I would consider selling it on a more opened car listing website but I’m conflicted about this option because: 1) it is a high mileage vehicle (208K) which would leave me exposed to getting low-balled by a few bottom feeders looking for a good deal. 2) I don’t want to sell it to someone who will beat the hell out of it, forcing it into an early grave and leaving it to potentially become an organ donor at a local pick-n-pull. I would be mortified if I saw my Satty featured in a segment of “Latest Junkyard Finds” on TTAC. (Read More…)

By on July 19, 2018

The other day, among the urbane, informed chatter happening in the TTAC Slack room, Adam Tonge suggested a little Buy/Drive/Burn trio to me. The year is 1999, and the subjects are full-size luxury sedans of the front-drive and comfort variety. Lincoln, Cadillac, and Chrysler are all represented, all wearing their conservative, double-breasted suits.

Come along, and select your turn of the century American luxury sedan.

(Read More…)

By on April 30, 2018

Image: Lincoln Motor Company

Man, how about that upcoming Lincoln Aviator? Pretty sharp-looking SUV, ain’t it? And then there’s the new Navigator. Kinda big, though, but the 2019 Nautilus should be just the ticket for the front-drive midsizer crowd.

Oh, right — we were talking about sedans. Lincoln loves ’em, apparently, and it’s not having any of this Ford’s-killing-all-the-cars talk. (Read More…)

By on April 18, 2018

Car dealership, Image: VadimGuzhva/Bigstock.comThis will be our third Sedan Showdown in a row. Kicking us off were some basic full-size models, and through the “Not nice enough!” complaints, the Charger took home the win. Giving the people what they want, we turned the budget up to $45,000 and presented some luxury full-size sedans instead. Again, FCA took home a win; the Chrysler 300 easily overpowered the base Lincoln Continental, and pipped the top-trim Buick LaCrosse.

All the while, this third commenter-sourced trio waited in the wings, ready to pounce. Smaller than our previous two sets of cars, Bumpy ii wants to see you squirm and set fires. You ready? This couple is.

(Read More…)

By on April 12, 2018

Last time on Buy/Drive/Burn, we took a look at full-size sedans of an American persuasion and non-luxury intent. The consensus was loud and clear on which vehicle of the trio to burn; the Taurus was the subject of a flame war. Citing the sedan’s outdated everything and bad packaging, most of you didn’t like it.

Some of you also complained that the three offerings were too basic, and lacking in content and luxury. Today we turn up the luxury dial and look at three full-size Americans which are a bit more aspirational.

Ready, comrades? This might be tough.

(Read More…)

By on March 26, 2018

The future of the slow-selling Lincoln Continental couldn’t be more hazy, but a new report claims the brand is preparing a last-ditch effort to revive interest in the flagship sedan. How does Lincoln plan to reverse a sales slide amid an industry addicted to crossovers?

Suicide doors.

Yes, the novel layout once favored by luxury American automakers — and returned to prominence with the iconic 1961-1969 Continentals — could make a comeback. (Read More…)

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