Starter failed on my 2001 crown victoria, Dec' 2011. Car would produce one loud click (the pinion bearing coming out), but not turn over. After several attempts it would eventually turn over. Battery is six years old so it's not putting out as well as it use to... Pulled the starter out (3 bolts, what a PAIN.. hint: use a 1/4" socket wrench for the top bolt!) and tested with just battery, same problem. Had it tested at the auto parts store...
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The engine may overheat at idle when the AC is on. A new, upgraded fan motor and resistor assembly should be installed.