Ford Authority

Veteran Tech Heartily Endorses Ford Panther Platform: Video

David Long, who goes by the online moniker Car Wizard, is a veteran mechanic who’s seen quite a few vehicles in his bays throughout the years, including quite a few from Ford. He’s taken the time to outline issues with the Ford F-150 pickups and isn’t shy about discussing the troubles of owning an aging vehicle based on his experiences with a Lincoln Continental. Now, he has made a video to talk about the Ford Panther platform, which he touts as being one of the best, most reliable buys for shoppers with a tight budget.

“This is, as far as the platform, the best car you can buy outside of a Toyota,” Long explains, referencing the Ford Panther platform vehicle in his bay.

While he’s specifically showing off a 2002 Mercury Grand Marquis, he notes that the Panther platform is also beneath the skin of the Ford Crown Victoria and Lincoln Town Car. He calls out the fact that law enforcement favored the platform for quite some time, thanks to the affordability of repairs, although they “hardly ever break down.”

Long pops the hood, pointing out the simple, easily serviceable design of the 4.6L V8 engine. Things like the alternator and water pump are relatively easy to get to. He says that if you’re mechanically inclined, the Ford Panther platform makes it simple to work on your own vehicle and perform repairs to keep it on the road. Inside, these vehicles are extremely comfortable and feel solid, ready to tackle daily commutes or long hauls.

Long acknowledges that the Ford Panther platform vehicles are often perceived as being “grandpa” cars, but he thinks that the dependability they offer trumps aesthetics.

“These are so comfortable,” Long says. “It’s bulletproof – and I mean, bulletproof.”

The Ford Panther platform was in production from 1978-2011, and won over many drivers during that time. It also served as a reliable taxi cab for many cabbies in New York City. Incredibly, two Ford Crown Victoria sedans are still in service in the city, although as Ford Authority recently reported, that may change soon, as they have aged out of the standards set by the Taxi and Limousine Commission.

Be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for more Crown Victoria news, Town Car news, Grand Marquis news and ongoing Ford news coverage.

Alexandra is a Colorado-based journalist with a passion for all things involving horsepower, be it automotive or equestrian.

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  1. Bob B.

    Clean examples are all gone, only Panthers I see around here are used up junk.

  2. Ford500guy

    Guess again, their not all in the junk yards as nice examples are still around. I just picked up a nice 1988 Mercury Grand Marquis LS with 64,000 miles for $1500.00. Keep looking there still many more to be found.

  3. James Verzani

    I drive a Lincoln Town car with over 400,000 miles for Luxor Limi in Tampa Bay . We had a few with over 200,000 miles no problems.

  4. Barry Spaar

    I have been a proponent of the Panther platforms for years. Ford should have spent money of updating these instead of shuttering production. My 1993 Crown Vic still runs strong and is comfortable to drive. I talked a friend into a Panther platform years ago when he needed to replace a smaller European car that was totaled in an accident and he loved it so much that he bought a second one. These cars can still be had for a reasonable price. Long live the Panther!!

  5. Bob

    I have a 01 Marquis just like the one in the pic with the same Performance/Handling package. I got mine in July from the original owner with 84K miles. All service was done at the dealer since new. I put a set of Thrush Turbo mufflers and a K&N air filter on it for a few more HP. Mine was ordered with the 3.55 rear end so it comes out of the hole pretty good for how heavy it is.

  6. Westly Martin

    I watched that video last week, that Marquis actually has the performance package on it. The wire wheels and dual exhaust are a dead giveaway. My folks used to own an 04′ Marauder, it was a bit harder to get parts for since it had the 4-valve ‘Cobra’ engine in it.


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