hmm, where should we begin...the P71 found in the VIN of a crown vic, means that it is a police package. All crown victoria's VIN number begin with 2FAFP, it is the next two numbers that will distinguish the models, such as 71 (police), 72-73 (normally attributed to the taxi's, limo's, etc), 74 (civilian models, LX Sport, HPP, etc).
The main difference between the P71 and the more common P74 models, is the heavy duty suspension, heavy duty cooling systems (transmission, oil), 140mph calibrated speedometer. Police models vary, because you can order cruise control, front bench seat, driver's power seat, carpet, etc.
I just purchased a 2000 CVPI two weeks ago:
I also have a 1997 Black Grand Marquis HPP, which basically has the same dash, minus the clock in the middle of the dash, whereas the CVPI has the trunk release button there. I personally believe my GM HPP is quicker than the CVPI, 0-60mph, but the CVPI definitely moves traffic out of the way...lol!
The ride is definitely harsher in the P71, as compared to the other models offered in the CV.
If you are going to purchase one, I would recommend the following: Try to find a federal agency's CV. I work for a government agency and can tell you that the cars are serviced regularly and we do not beat on them like the locals would. We normally respond after the local's have had their fill, so we look cooler rolling onto the scene, after their is a nice crowd....LOL.
A local/state P71 will have their cars running in idle for long periods of hours, may have been in multiple pursuits, but then again, you have watched COPS, I am sure, and you can see the different PD's driving their CV's. It would only take one pursuit to give the CV a good beating. Not that I am totally steering you away to only purchase a ex-Federal CV, the local/state CV's are serviced more regularly, but to me it is the peace of mind during the purchase.
Irregardless of my personal preference, keep in mind, the P71's are a work horse and will normally drive up to 300,000 miles without any major overhaul. Mine has 125,000+ and it sounds and drives like it only has 25,000 miles. Mine was an ex-Federal Agency's CV.
I have heard good things from a few dealers of the P71's. Two are on Ebay. " KCPoliceCars.com " and the other is " In-Pursuit ". THe 3rd dealer is here in NY, named, " PoliceCarsUnlimited.com ".
There are two P71's on Ebay right now from the two names mentioned above. I would have gone with the " In-Pursuit " CV, if I didnt stumble on the one I purchased two weeks ago. Good luck on your search and hope I didnt you confuse you too much.
FMS 345hp crate motor, Vortech S-Trim, AFR 165cc Heads, 1.6 Rockers, Cobra Upper/Lower intake, 38lb injectors, PRO-M 80mm MAF, MSD Ignition w/BTM, MSD Distributor, BBK Chrome Headers, 5 spd tranny w/Hurst shifter, 3.73 gears w/new posi & Moser 31 spline axles, Cross-Drilled rotors (front & rear), 2.5" exhaust w/X-Pipe & Magnaflows, 245/50/16's on 16x8 GTC Rims, 255lph fuel pump, T-Rex FMU