Lincoln Continental Mark IV coupe: power – 212 hp

Lincoln Continental Mark 4 coupe: power – 212 hp. Made in 1974. Moscow transport museum

The Continental Mark IV is a personal luxury car that was marketed by the Lincoln division of Ford Motor Company from the 1972 to 1976 model years. The third generation of the Mark series, the Mark IV grew in size over its Continental Mark III predecessor. As with the previous generation, the Mark IV saw little direct competition in the American marketplace, competing nearly exclusively against the Cadillac Eldorado (redesigned for 1971).

As with the Mark III, the Mark IV shared its chassis with the Ford Thunderbird, with the Mark IV receiving its own bodywork below the windows. Hidden headlights made their return, along with a radiator-style grille, and a Continental spare tire trunklid. For 1976, the Designer Series option package was introduced; in what would become a tradition for the Mark series (and later Lincoln), the option consisted of specially coordinated exterior and interior trims developed between Lincoln and contemporary fashion designers.

Ford assembled the Continental Mark IV at its Wixom Assembly Plant (Wixom, Michigan) facility alongside the Ford Thunderbird and the Lincoln Continental. For 1977, the Mark IV underwent a substantial revision, becoming the Continental Mark V.

All Mark IVs were equipped with the 460 cu in (7.5 L)-4V Ford 385 series V8 (with two valves per cylinder, “4V” is in reference to the four-venturi Autolite carburetor).

Rated at 365 hp SAE gross (272 kW) in the Mark III, the 460 was carried over to the Mark IV. For 1972, rated output underwent a numeric decrease to 212 hp (158 kW) SAE net. In order to comply with changing EPA emissions regulations, Ford was required to decrease the compression ratio of the engine. The same year, American auto manufacturers adopted SAE net horsepower as its standard of measuring engine output, to better reflect real-world engine performance (as installed in vehicles). All examples of the Mark IV were equipped with a Ford C6 three-speed automatic transmission.

A feature retained from the Mark III was the “Sure-track” brakes. Both front seats were power adjustable.

Performance was not quite competitive with contemporary premium personal luxury cars. However, no other “personal luxury” models were six-passenger vehicles, except the Cadillac Eldorado.

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