Overview & Reviews
Large V8-powered sedans made a comeback in the 21st century, but the Ford Crown Victoria was one of the very few full-size, rear-drive sedans that never left. The "Crown Vic" moniker goes back several decades to when Ford adopted the name for a high-line trim level on the full-size LTD sedan, as baby boomers and their elders no doubt recall. The LTD name was dropped in 1992.
The Crown Vic's model run continued uninterrupted until 2007, the last year it was available for consumer purchase. However, it is still produced for fleet use by law enforcement and other agencies.
Unlike its more modern competition, the throwback Ford Crown Victoria uses stout but heavy body-on-frame construction and a solid rear axle. The ride and handling envelope suffered somewhat as a result, but it is a durable and cost-effective approach -- which, no doubt, is why it's so popular with cab companies, police departments and fleet operators.
For the car's most recent redesign in 2003, Ford fitted it with an all-new frame, a redesigned front suspension and rack-and-pinion steering, all of which improved the big Vic's crash performance and handling dynamics. But, equipped like a Police Interceptor or not, it still couldn't match the agility and overall refinement of its American and Japanese peers, which feature modern unibody designs with fully independent suspensions.
Most Recent Ford Crown Victoria
Last produced for civilian use for the 2007 model year, the Ford Crown Victoria was a full-size, six-passenger sedan available in base and LX trim levels. The LX model had a few extra upscale features and also allowed access to a couple optional packages such as the premium handling and performance package (previously known as the LX Sport trim level).
Despite its 2-ton curb weight, the Crown Victoria was reasonably quick thanks to a 4.6-liter V8 engine with 224 horsepower and 272 pound-feet of torque; LX models equipped with the upgraded performance package were a bit swifter, with 239 horses and 287 lb-ft of torque. A four-speed automatic was the only transmission available, although Crown Vics equipped with the sport package also had an upgraded torque converter and shorter rear-axle gearing that made for quicker initial acceleration off the line.
Inside, the dated design and budget materials quality were immediately apparent. The vehicle's strengths were reflected in its solid value for the money and the roomy, comfortable accommodations for five or six. This included a huge 21-cubic-foot trunk that could easily swallow a week's worth of luggage for four adults or a family.
In reviews, we found that the Ford Crown Victoria delivered a forgiving ride quality. Handling was acceptable but sloppy, and there was just no getting around this big sedan's decades-old design, substantial weight and large dimensions. If you're looking for nothing more than a simple family cruiser or roomy commuter, a used, well-kept Crown Vic will perform admirably. But if you want a full-size V8 sedan that also feels nimble and refined, we believe you'll be happier with this Ford's more modern competition, such as a Chrysler 300.
Past Ford Crown Victoria Models
Though it's received a variety of updates in the past 15 years, the most recent Crown Victoria is still basically the same car as it was back in 1992, the time of the last major redesign.
The most recent body style dates back to 1998, though in 2003 it received an all-new chassis under that now-familiar body shell. The suspension design was largely the same, but it featured many updates and incorporated more responsive rack-and-pinion steering for the first time. Antilock brakes were made standard that year, and front side airbags were available on both the LX and LX Sport.
The Crown Victoria was dramatically restyled for 1998 by adopting the formal roof line previously used exclusively on its Mercury Grand Marquis twin. Powertrains were revised to deliver more power, and the rear suspension was tweaked to improve handling. There were only detail changes until 2001 when adjustable pedals were first offered, and the engine was tweaked yet again to boost output to 220 hp on the base and LX models and a dual-exhaust-enabled 235 hp on the LX Sport.
Following the end of the previous model's long run, the '92 Ford Crown Victoria debuted with a restyled body and a new-generation, overhead-cam 4.6-liter V8 rated at 190 or 210 hp that we found much smoother and more powerful than the ancient overhead-valve V8s it replaced. Minor improvements carried through to 1995, when a new grille, lighting, bumpers, trunk lid and modified dash arrived. After that, not much changed until the next big update three years later.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 334.00
Great car! - 2004 Ford Crown Victoria
By rjsutton - December 29 - 2:00 am
Wonderul piece of machinery, winderful styling, nice interior and comfortable. Very good on the road and handles very easy. I have used the traction control and it works great. The performance of this car is outstanding, it meets or exceeds my expectations in all areas.
1997 Crown Vic 141k Miles - 1997 Ford Crown Victoria
By plymouthfury58 - December 6 - 12:44 am
I bought this car 3 months ago for $1400 from an exchange student. The lack of maintenance from the previous owner caused the radiator to fail, the transmission to slip and the engine to overheat. Hit a curb at 50 mph going down a hill, no damage from either at all. Drove to the shop just fine. Cost $450 to do all of the neglected maintenance at one. No permanent damage. A true testament to its durability. The intake manifold needed replacement. Last owner took care of that. Even when in disrepair, it ran smoothly and beautifully. Steering is tricky and jittery but not too bad. Fuel efficiency is not fantastic but can be improved and is an even tradeoff for the safety and durability.
Best car ever - 1997 Ford Crown Victoria
By Coinneach - November 30 - 4:13 am
Note the amount of miles I drive: in any other car, this much seat time would be intolerable. Ive owned several Crown Vics: theyre comfortable, reliable, and safer than anything else in the full-size class (ask me about the time I was rear-ended at extremely high speed during a blizzard). You can drive them like an old man if you wish, or you can put your foot down and fling them around with abandon. Ive brought 3 very large friends along on road trips, and none of them had a single complaint about the car.
Simply Amazed! - 2005 Ford Crown Victoria
By collegestudent21 - November 10 - 8:56 am
I was definitely not planning on buying a crown victoria, my previous car, died a week before I was suppose to start college, i had a 2000 Toyota Camry, only had 98,000 miles and the car died. I got my 05 crown victoria from my grandmother, she bought a new 08 grand marqauis. Ive had the car for a year and a half. The reliability has been great so far, it had 18,000 miles when I got it, it has 47,000 miles as of today, has not had any problems os far. The ride is extremely smooth, car has amazing power, i catch myself speeding alot. The seats are extremely comfortable, and lastly the gas mileage is amazing, on two different trips, i got an average of 28 MPG, I was shocked.
2005 Crown Victoria Sport - 2005 Ford Crown Victoria
By Tom - November 1 - 7:40 pm
Just bought this car and love it. The LX Sport gives a fantastic ride, great handling, and plenty of power. LX Sport comes with 17 inch wheels. This car moves! If you are looking for a sedan bigger than any GM car this is it. Rides so smooth and the handling package is great. Plenty of interior room and a huge trunk. This car is so under marketed by Ford!
thank you - 2004 Ford Crown Victoria
By jim bob 101 - October 16 - 10:00 am
the crown victoria is the best car Iv ever driven.thanks for such great car.I love the crown victoria, it is my favorite car in the world, i would pick it over any other car even super cars.
Good basics, but needs some work - 2000 Ford Crown Victoria
By CVPI2000 - October 13 - 4:13 am
I bought a 2000 Police Interceptor based on its safety and cooling capacity. Its a blast to drive, but some things need work. I bought an aftermarket console for between the seats for $50 on eBay- great investment.
Exellent, solid car. - 2002 Ford Crown Victoria
By Ford Fan - October 9 - 10:00 am
The CV is a wonderful car on the highway, the ride is smooth, solid and with the optional handling package, firm enough for decent handling. The 5 passenger sport appearance pkg (LX Sport for 2002) makes for a much sportier apperance. For those of us who think that a column mounted shifter is to stodgy, the floor shifter is a nice option.
One of the Best Crown Victorias - 1997 Ford Crown Victoria
By Henry C. - September 30 - 10:00 am
I bought my Vic a year ago and have loved every minute of it. It is the Last year of that body style and it has the New Crown Voctoria Interior design. Lovin it! It gets up and goes without hesitation and brakes on a dime.
my dearest rose - 1996 Ford Crown Victoria
By adam roler - September 27 - 10:00 am
my 1996 crown victoria is by far the best car ive ever had. it is comfortable, reliable, and powerful enough to do whatever i need. i may be biased towards big cars, but my crown vic is one great cruiser!