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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Mon Jun 27, 2011 11:52 pm

Here is the story of my modded daily driver 1998 Crown Victoria.

I originally found the car on Vehix.com in January 2010 at a small dealer in Stafford, VA. I wasn't really looking for a police package car, but with 31,000 miles on the odometer, I couldn't pass it up. So, after a 4 hour drive and seeing how well it was cared for I left the dealer with the keys in hand.

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Getting it home turned into an impromptu adventure. Coming over I-68 at night, it had begun to snow. By the time I got back to Morgantown, there was about 2 inches on the ground. Amazingly, I didn't get stuck!

The only bad cosmetic problem on the car was a section of the driver's front fender where the clearcoat was peeling.

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After having that taken care of in July 2010 along with restoring the headlights and a good buffing/wax, the car's cosmetic work was basically done.

I have always been into cars and hot rods, and I have always wanted to modify something, so I started researching mods that I could do to the car that wouldn't sacrifice fuel mileage or reliability (my commute is about 350 miles a week during the school year). I soon found out about the Mercury Marauder airbox/ mass airflow sensor and custom tune combination. That is the proven mild bolt-on for the Crown Victoria that would give a decent performance improvement. Coupled with a larger 70mm throttle body and ported intake plenum, the car really woke up.

Assembling the new plenum and throttle body:
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Finally, in May of this year, I decided to round out the car with a good set of mufflers. I decided on 18'' case Magnaflows since they won't rust away or drone on the interstate. It isn't loud unless you step on it, but it has a nice deep tone at idle. When I started, the 4.6 V8 made 215 hp and 275 lb.-ft. of torque. Now, the best estimate is about 240 hp and 295 lb.-ft. torque. While it isn't the fastest thing on the street, it is a lot of fun to drive and it is something different.
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91foxbody
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:46 am

sounds like a fun build, don't know too many cars like this being modded. keep us posted
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Blacked Out
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:36 am

Very cool. I was always impressed how the old/current cop cars could accelerate as fast as they do when crossing the median. Nothing like having some speed and luxury at the same time imo.
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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 2:13 pm

91foxbody wrote:
sounds like a fun build, don't know too many cars like this being modded. keep us posted

Yeah, there aren't too many around. There is a guy that I hang out with on a regular basis near Pittsburgh that hot rodded a 2004 Crown Vic. His could wipe the floor with mine. That these cars aren't mainstream in the hot rodding world is half the fun of building one. The aftermarket for these is in its infancy and there are only 2 guys that sell a decent number of parts for them. If you want to build more than a mild daily driver, you have to really do your research to find out what works and what doesn't. You can't build a 10 second Crown Victoria from a catalog. Here is a picture from one of our meets:

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ScottHofferPhotography wrote:
Very cool. I was always impressed how the old/current cop cars could accelerate as fast as they do when crossing the median. Nothing like having some speed and luxury at the same time imo.

These things are pretty quick for their size. But, it is up to the agency that orders the car as to how much luxury is included. I don't have cruise control and it didn't even have so much as a tape deck or center console when I got it. The first couple of months I had it I had to prop myself up by the transmission tunnel when I went around turns, haha. I really like the bare-bones feel of it. It's the same way the first muscle cars were. Stripped down, no frills full size cars.

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Blacked Out
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 2:30 pm

cool pictures man.
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:17 pm

sweet build! if I had your car i would make it look exactly like an undercover cop car and all murdered out!


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91foxbody
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:36 pm

Gixxer wrote:
sweet build! if I had your car i would make it look exactly like an undercover cop car and all murdered out!

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] i'd be the person to drive behind people and watch them check their rear view mirror lol
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:48 pm

looks like a good build... planning more power ?
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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:57 pm

Gixxer wrote:
sweet build! if I had your car i would make it look exactly like an undercover cop car and all murdered out!

Thank you! It's too nice to murder it out, lol. It does have two small antennas on the trunk lid. I am planning on having them removed once I save up enough money and get some maintenance items out of the way.

91foxbody wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] i'd be the person to drive behind people and watch them check their rear view mirror lol

That gets old pretty quickly, actually. Before I put my parts guy's sticker in the rear quarter window, some people were afraid to pass me on the interstate. On a busy interstate, it's no fun when someone causes a traffic jam right behind you with impatient people weaving around like a bunch of crazies.

wvtrap wrote:
looks like a good build... planning more power ?

Thanks! Right now I'm not planning more power. I've already done the best bang-for-the-buck mods. If I were to place an order for it right now, I would work on the suspension. With some thicker sway bars and stronger rear control arms, the driver would be the limiting factor through the turns instead of the car! [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

Once I'm out of school, have a job, and can afford a second car, I would love to really build this thing.
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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Bigger Rear Sway Bar   Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:04 pm

This is my first suspension mod and I'm pretty proud of it, lol. Since my car is a Police Package car, it has a 29.5mm front sway bar an an annoyingly small 17mm bar in the rear. The only aftermarket option for these cars is from Addco. They make a 31mm front and 25mm rear, but the kit sells for $350. And I just put new bushings and endlinks on the front and didn't want to waste that effort.

You can also find bigger bars in the Ford catalog. Ford put a 21mm rear sway bar in the 2003 Mercury Marauder and gave one to the Grand Marquis and Crown Victoria with the Handling and Performance Package (HPP option). Luckily, those parts will work with earlier cars like mine, so I decided to go that route. It's also a fairly cheap upgrade for $51 shipped online. [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

I put the 21mm bar on last night and had a late night blast down River Road and what a difference it made! Instead of rolling and wallowing through corners, the rear swings back and forth with the steering input. Too awesome!

The Marauder bar is at the top:

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All installed:

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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:15 pm

Wow. I just realized I don't have any engine pictures or a nice list of what I've done to this thing on here, lol.

Engine stock:

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After mods:

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Complete mod list:

Mercury Marauder Airbox, 80mm Mass Airflow Sensor, 2004 Police Interceptor Intake Tube, 70mm Throttle Body, ADTR.NET Ported Plenum, BlueOvalChips.com Custom Tune, Marauder 21mm Rear Sway Bar, Magnaflow Mufflers, and a Jeep Ultimate Center Console.
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91foxbody
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Dec 13, 2011 6:50 pm

lookin good man, i bet that new bar is a big difference
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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Dec 13, 2011 8:59 pm

Thanks. It is amazing what a difference 4mm made.
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:04 pm

That's what she said [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:08 pm

tkromer wrote:
That's what she said [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

Ahh. I should have seen that comment coming, lol.
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:13 pm

Alex98CVPI wrote:
tkromer wrote:
That's what she said [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

Ahh. I should have seen that comment coming, lol.

Rofl
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Dec 21, 2011 5:53 pm

Some beauty shots from this year:

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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Dec 21, 2011 6:16 pm

Looks good! You MUST clean the underside of your hood if you're gonna show off the engine bay....
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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:13 pm

I really tried scrubbing it before shows, but I couldn't get it spotless. I'll give it another shot next year, but I'm probably going to leave the hood down.
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:23 pm

I use Adam's All Purpose Cleaner, seems to work every time, but if you keep it clean it's easy, if you let it get bad it's a project.
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:43 pm

Thanks for the tip! I'll keep an eye out for that cleaner and give it a shot when spring comes around.
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:19 pm

I've got another suspension mod waiting in the wings. The factory rear control arms are made of stamped steel and effectivley do almost nothing short of hold the rear axle to the frame of the car.

One of two people who supply parts for the Panther platform contacted Heinous Motorsports and had billet aluminum rear control arms made. These things are awesome! From what I've heard, they just make everything better. Acceleration, braking, cornering, just cruising down the highway...I can't wait to get these on!

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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:21 pm

Those look pretty nice. I need to get a set for my car. LCAs tend to help tremendously.


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Alex98CVPI
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:41 pm

Dave, your Mustang would be awesome with some suspension work!
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PostSubject: Re: Alex's Daily Driver Crown Victoria    Sun Feb 19, 2012 2:52 pm

Kaleb stopped by on Friday and helped me get the rear control arms installed. In the push to get the car on the road, I forgot to get a picture of them installed, but I will get one when I take the wheels off to make sure the bolts have stayed properly torqued.

Here's a comparison between the stock stamped parts and the Henious milled aluminum ones:

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