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1977 Mark Questions

Hi Bill,

1977 Mark V with 11,000 actual miles on it, drives great but when I'm slowing down (very slow) and turn, the engine dies on me. It doesn't happen when I slow and stop, it happens when I'm entering the turn, weather accelerating or still slow and it happens more to the Right than to the Left.

Second problem which happened only twice but scared me: while driving at night, all the lights went off (head lights and all panel lights) like it was manually switched off because I could hear the Vacuum units working. It happened just for about 2-4 seconds and went back to normal. No change on engine's RPM or other systems.

Needless to say that in my part of the world I can't get any assist.

Many thanks,

Ozer in Israel


Ozer -

Nice car. Mark Vs with 11000 miles on the odometer are becoming harder to find these days. I am having problems in trying to address your questions so I need to ask you some questions. When these issues arise, how long had you been driving the car for? When the engine shuts down how do you restart it and how long does it take to restart?

An engine can stall in this manner if it suddenly looses ignition or fuel and this must be determined somehow at the time of the stall. General testing for the fuel pump and ignition is shown in the shop manual. Loss of ignition could be due to a failing Duraspark ignition system. Loss of fuel could be a weak fuel pump or a plugging fuel filter etc. The fact that it occurs only during slow turns deepens the mystery and makes the issue very difficult to diagnose without a personal test drive.

The lighting problem could be due to a faulty headlamp switch connection or some other electrical connection. When the lights turn off as you describe are you using the "autolamp" feature or are you operating the headlamp switch manually? The Autolamp feature uses several electrical components that can be failing. Do you have the factory Shop Manuals for your Mark V?

An underhood visual inspection of the electrical components and the general condition of the wiring may turn up a problem. The car is 37 years old and could have suffered some rodent damage during storage. Let us know if you can offer us any further information.