CC Capsule: The Elusive Signature Series Touring Sedan

Panther Day continues with yet more 1998-02 Townie goodness! Remember the Touring Sedan? I won’t blame you if you don’t, for they were not a hot seller. But, with their improved handling and de-chromed trim, they were about as close as a Lincoln got to a Marauder.


The Touring Sedan debuted with the newly de-squared 1998 Town Car. It likely was intended to compete with the 1994-98 Cadillac DeVille Concours and 2000-up DTS. As such, it featured color-keyed side moldings in lieu of chrome, 16″ Chrome-Tech alloy wheels, black bird’s eye maple trim inside, and perforated leather seating.

Touring Sedans also got a blacked-out grille, but the real goodies included dual exhaust (shared with the Cartier and Limo Package Executive Series models), revised springs, monotube shock absorbers, and 30mm front/15mm rear sway bars. A 3.55 axle ratio was also included (Executives, Signatures and Cartiers made do with a 3.08:1 ratio).

I actually considered a Touring Sedan to replace my much-loved ’91 Volvo 940SE back in 2004. The Ford dealer in Moline had one in gunmetal gray with light gray leather. I drove it and it was quite nice. True, it did have the ticky-tacky chrome wheel arch and rocker panel trim (as does our featured Medium Charcoal Green example here), but at least it didn’t have the fake convertible top, vinyl landau top or chrome luggage rack that many of these cars sported–like a malignant growth.

Ultimately, I decided against it, and bought a ’99 Volvo S70 instead. But with my recently-acquired Cartier, I guess the decision was just deferred!