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The Ford Crown Victoria was a lot of things: tough as nails, practical, great at getting everyone around you to drop down to five MPH below the speed limit. But was it fast?

The Crown Vic didn’t rank well in today’s Answers of the Day, but reader CobraJoe is here with a defense of the car I cannot help but love:

Don’t hate until you’ve driven one. Slow? Sure, it was never a performance car. Overweight? Not really, they’re only a little bit heavier than any other full sized car. Turd? Hell no.

They aren’t performance cars, but you can get them to slide in the right conditions, the PI and HPP versions handle quite well for a massive car at that price point, and they’re more than reliable and near impossible to damage. (Cop brakes do make a difference, 4 wheel discs when the Mustang still had rear drums. Cop shocks make a difference, the base Vic rides like a holdover from the 70s, the stiffer springs and shocks on the PI make it actually fun to hustle around a corner. And Cop engine? The only changes were to make it more long lasting (silicone hoses, extra coolers, etc)).

And yes, greasy cop wannabes do purchase them for unsavory purposes (one of the biggest annoyances on the CV forums), I can vouch that the ex-cop looks are more annoying than beneficial. Even my all-white older CVPI model in a town that excusively uses black and whites would slow people down, and pulling in behind someone who is going the speed you want to immediately have them slow down to exactly the speed limit is very annoying.

TLDR: Don’t judge till you drive one, they’re absolutely in the camp of “slow car fast”, but in a different way than the Miata.

“Don’t hate until you’ve driven one.” Solid advice for nearly every car. Congrats on the COTD win, CobraJoe! Keep that Crown Vic party going.


Contact the author at patrick@jalopnik.com.