The Ford Thunderbird for 1993 is limited to LX and Super Coupe models. For '93, the LX sports an exterior look similar to that of the sporty Super Coupe.The LX is marketed as a single-price entry at about $16,000.

A 3.8-liter, 140-horsepower V-6 is standard in the LX. A 5-liter, 200-h.p.,high-output V-8 with four-speed automatic transmission is optional at $1,086 for the engine/transmission package.

The car we tested came with the V-8, a powerful yet quiet unit, though at times it stumbled and wasn't as smooth as we'd expect in a V-8, especially onethat sets the buyer back an extra $1,086.

As is often the case with Fords, you feel some heaviness in the wheel, but the suspension is nimble enough so that you don't fight the weight in corners or turns or when trying to slink into that narrow parking spot.

A driver-side air bag is standard, but anti-lock brakes are a $695 option.

The interior is attractive, but though the front seat is roomy, the rear seat comes up short in headroom unless you like to slouch. The trunk is not deep.

Nice touches include automatic safety belts, an arrow in the instrument panel pointing out which side the fuel-filler door is on and a panic button onthe key fob. If you approach the car in a parking lot and spot someone tampering with the vehicle or a suspicious-looking character lurking nearby, you can press the panic button to set off the horn and flashing lights.

The base price is $15,797. By "single price," Ford means the LX offers at no extra charge a $738 option package consisting of automatic temperature control; rear-window defroster; dual, illuminated visor mirrors; power antenna; and cast aluminum wheels. Standard are such items as illuminated entry, power locks, power driver seat, speed control, tilt steering wheel and automatic transmission. With options made standard plus factory and dealer margin reductions, the LX price is down about $4,000 from '92.

Still, the sky is the limit on the sticker, depending on what other goodiesyou add. A power moonroof runs $776, power seats $305, leather seats $515 and a compact-disc player $491. Our test car topped $22,000 with those goodies anda slew more.