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1994 Ford Thunderbird Coupe

2dr Coupe Super

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  • $22,440 original MSRP
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Printable Version

1994 Ford Thunderbird Coupe

Printable Version

1994 Ford Thunderbird Coupe

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1994 Ford Thunderbird

Source: New Car Test Drive

Overview

The contemporary car is spawned by platform committees made up of representatives from every discipline styling, engineering, manufacturing, purchasing, materials handling, pricing, marketing, distribution and so on. This process makes a lot of sense considering the complexities involved in bringing a new car to market.

To elicit interest in their new products, platform committees often increase the number of features offered while keeping the car competitively priced. In this area, the Ford Thunderbird platform committee has hit a home run with its 1994 product line-and they've done particularly well with the Thunderbird LX coupe.

Our test car was just loaded with options - a 205-hp V8, a power moonroof, anti-lock brakes (ABS), traction assist, remote keyless entry, a premium sound system with a power antenna and temperature control. These features bumped the sticker price up to $20,550.

This amount compares favorably with the Thunderbird LX's competition. The Pontiac Grand Prix SE we tested-with no moonroof and the base 160-hp V6 engine-had a sticker price of $19,436. Put a moonroof and the optional 205-hp V6 in the Grand Prix and the price leaps ahead of the Thunderbird's. Meanwhile, the top-of-the-line Toyota Camry SE Coupe, with leather interior, moonroof and 188-hp V6, comes in at almost $27,000.

Walkaround

Ford stylists have done an excellent job on the '94 LX coupe. They have retained the distinctive Thunderbird appearance yet have taken it to the next generation. The styling is more aerodynamic-front and rear fascia treatments and curved door lines give it the crouching, low-hood, air-piercing look now popular in sporty cars.

Our Thunderbird was nice finished in Deep Emerald Green Metallic, with a green cloth interior. The cast aluminum wheels, part of an optional preferred equipment package, underscored the car's sporty presence. We liked the look and thought it compared favorably with the Camry, while presenting a cleaner, more contemporary profile than the Grand Prix.

Interior Features

Gauges, controls and switches on the Thunderbird LX are conveniently placed, easy to operate and well-lighted. We liked the positioning of the gearshift lever in the console (our vehicle was equipped with the four-speed electronic-shift automatic transmission)-it twisted toward the driver for firm, positive control. However, we didn't care for the small, dish-like storage area or the cupholder that prohibited comfortable use of the armrest.

Ford redesigned much of the Thunderbird's interior for 1994, incorporating standard dual air bags. Other occupant safety features the Thunderbird boasts include energy-absorbing visors and door trim panels designed for impact protection.

The front bucket seats in our test vehicle included a six-way adjustable seat for the driver. We found the seats were very comfortable and supportive-among the best we've ever experienced. The driver's seat however, lacked adjustable lumbar support. And all the seats seemed a little bit too narrow, which may present a comfort problem for wider-hipped people. Headroom in was good - but remember, this is a sport coupe, and tall people could have clearance problems in all entries in this vehicle class.

Another thing: Ford claims this car will seat five. OK, perhaps five people could sit together comfortably on short trips-but based on our testdrive experience, we think cramming three passengers in the rear seat for anything longer than an across-town jaunt would constitute unjust punishment. And adding to their discomfort would be lack of rear-seat legroom, which is limited when the front seats are all the way back.

We found the interior to be quiet and comfortable-perfect for listening to the premium sound system that included an AM/FM stereo receiver, a cassette player and a power antenna. While Ford's vaunted JBL sound system is not available on the Thunderbird LX, this one nevertheless sounded great.

Driving Impressions

As mentioned above, our Thunderbird LX was well-equipped for running gear. It had the optional 205hp V8, a four-speed, electronic-shift automatic transmission, ABS and traction control. These all came together well to make the LX a fun-to-drive vehicle. Although this was a quiet-riding coupe (like all good Fords), the V8 roared to assert its power when we stepped on the accelerator.

The transmission did its job quietly and unobtrusively. Shift points seemed to be right where they should be under all conditions.

The electronic traction control on the Thunderbird LX teams with the ABS to provide braking to whichever drive wheel happens to slip. Although we didn't have snowy road conditions to really challenge us, we did have wet, slippery pavement, and our test-drive vehicle didn't experience any control problems.

Street, road and highway performance are this Thunderbird's bread and butter. Whether you do a lot of distance driving or just use your car to commute, we think you'll find the LX a joy to drive. It handles well, it's comfortable to ride in, and it seems to live by the "best surprise is no surprise" rule-meaning that unlike some cars, the Thunderbird LX does exactly what you expect it to do, exactly when you expect it to do it.

If you're looking for even more power, you may want to check out the Thunderbird Super Coupe with its techy, supercharged and intercooled V6 engine that pumps out a sincere 230 hp.

Summary

We think the Thunderbird LX is the best buy among sport coupes. It offers appealing features, such as a V8 engine and a moonroof, while keeping the sticker price close to the $20,000 mark.

In order to find a comparable bargain, you'd have to dial back to the basic Toyota Camry LE Coupe and add the necessary options. But even with the Camry LE, you'd still have a 188-hp V6 competing with the Thunderbird LXs 205-hp V8-and the Camry LE doesn't boast ABS or traction assist.

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Printable Version

1994 Ford Thunderbird Coupe

Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Std
Active Suspension System Std

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std

Road Visibility

Fog Lamps Std
Electrochromic Rearview Mirror Opt
Intermittent Wipers Std

Security

Alarm Opt
Printable Version

1994 Ford Thunderbird Coupe

Ford Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

Manufacturer's 7 years / 100,000 miles Powertrain Limited Warranty from original in-service date. 12-month/12,000-mile Comprehensive Limited Warranty. See dealer for details.. See dealer for details. Rental Reimbursement $30/day.
Age/Mileage Eligibility 6 model years or newer / less than 80,000 miles
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection 172
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance Yes
Special Financing Yes
Transferrable Warranty Yes
Warranty Deductible $100

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

1994 Ford Thunderbird Coupe

Data on this page may have come in part, or entirely, from one or more of the following providers.

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