When a vehicle design continues for more than ten years, manufacturers must believe that they got it right. When a vehicle retails to a community service operating across an entire nation the size of the United States, it would not seem unreasonable to believe that the vehicle is popular because it’s good. About 80% of the police services across the United States adopted the Crown Victoria Interceptor as their preference for a police cruiser, which equates to around 400,000 vehicles.
This huge demand by police services for the Crown Victoria does appear in conflict with the significant number of deaths attributed to its tendency for fuel tank fires. Yet police services continue to express a fondness for the Crown Victoria because it lends itself to the work required of a police cruiser better than most.
So what does the Crown Victoria provide that has for so long attracted police services? Below is an outline of the significant features associated with the Crown Victoria thought as beneficial:
Police Specific Issue
• Body-on-Frame Construction.
• Rear-Wheel Drive.
• V-8 power as standard.
• A Government Five Star Front Crash Test Safety Rating.
• Tested in 75 mph Rear-End Crash.
• Optional Fire Suppression System.
• Optional Ballistic Door Panels.
• 5 Police Customization Kits.
• Option of Ford Vehicle Special Order (VSO).
• Standard 17” Wheels and Tyres.
• Standard Engine Hour Metre.
• 4.6 litreV-8
• 190-239 horsepower
• 4 speed Automatic Transmission
• Power Steering
• Transmission Oil Coolers
• Air Conditioning
• Engine Hour Metre
• 17” Wheels & Tyres
• Driver & Passenger Airbags.
• Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS).
• Brake/shift interlock
• Front & Rear Stabilizer Bars
• Door Beams — Side Impact.
• Emergency Interior Trunk Release.
• Conventional Spare Tyre ~
• AM/FM radio
• Optional - Side Impact Airbags
• Optional - Fire Suppression System.
• Optional - Ballistic Door Panels.
• Optional - Traction Control
Ford Crown Victoria Milestones
Introduced in 1991 as a four door saloon with a then new, 4.6 litre V-8 overhead cam engine that produced either 190 or 210 bhp with dual pipe exhaust system.
1995 Ford Crown Victoria: Revised exterior included: grille, tail lamps, bumper facias, trunk, colour coded body side mouldings. Revised interior included: new woodgrain dash, weather temperature gauge, fuel indicator, backlighting for door switches, extended front seat travel.
2000 Ford Crown Victoria: new safety features were installed that included an interior emergency trunk release, three rear child seat upper anchor points, un-buckled seat-belt warning chime.
2002 Ford Crown Victoria: The design is now ten years old. Base models receive power driver seats and heated mirrors.
2003 Ford Crown Victoria: handling is improved by revisions made to the underpinnings.
Buying A Used Ford Crown Victoria
Prices for the Ford Crown Victoria will vary greatly because of the length of time the Crown has been produced. Here’s a general idea of what you can expect to pay:
1992 Ford Crown Victoria in average condition $1,150 to 1,650
1996 Ford Crown Victoria in average condition $2,500 to 3,250
2002 Ford Crown Victoria in average condition $9,000 to 11,000
Recognising the fuel tank fire problems associated with the Crown Victoria. and the tragedies that have resulted to both, the public and police, the question of whether a used Crown Victoria would be a worthwhile investment might best be addressed by looking at the safety features that Ford has made available. The optional Fire Suppression System was made available in order to resolve this significant risk and, appears to have done so.
Therefore if you are interested in purchasing a Crown Victoria, do not feel inhibited over the fire risk issue, provided you ensure that you purchase an example with Fire Suppression System. If you do find an example with this feature, which should be fairly straightforward because many customers, including the police, would have opted for this option given the publicity this issue attracted.
A Ford Crown Victoria with the Fire Suppression System will be an attractive investment because all other vehicle features are well covered. The V-8 offers good performance, the ride and handling deal with bumps well and do not allow the car to wallow. Fuel economy could be better, but all the mechanics are well proven so reliability should not prove a problem.